A New Javascript Runtime Fresh Out Of The Oven

A sizable portion of the Hackaday audience groans and runs their eyes when some new-fangled Javascript thing comes out. So what makes Bun different? Bun is a runtime (like Node or Deno)t that offers a performant all-in-one approach. Much to the Spice Girl’s delight, it is written in Zig. It offers bundling, transpiling, module resolution, and a fantastic foreign-function interface.

Node.js and Deno run on the V8 Javascript engine and provide the Node-API to access different features, such as filesystems, that don’t apply to web browsers. However, vast amounts of tooling have built up around Node.js and NPM (node package manager). Many Javascript projects have a bundling and transpiling step that takes the source and packages it together in a more standard format. Typescript needs to be packaged into javascript, and modules need to be resolved. Continue reading “A New Javascript Runtime Fresh Out Of The Oven”

Need A New Programming Language? Try Zig

Maybe you’ve heard of it, maybe you haven’t. Zig is a new programming language that seems to be growing in popularity. Let’s do a quick dive into what it is, why it’s unique, and what sort of things you would use it for. (Ed Note: Other than “for great justice“, naturally.)

What Is It?

You’ve likely heard of Rust as it has made significant inroads in critical low-level infrastructures such as operating systems and embedded microcontrollers. As a gross oversimplification, it offers memory safety and many traditional runtime checks pushed to compile time. It has been the darling of many posts here at Hackaday as it offers some unique advantages. With Rust on the rise, it makes sense that there might be some space for some new players. Languages like Julia, Go, Swift, and even Racket are all relative newcomers vying for the highly coveted mindshare of software engineers everywhere.

So let’s talk Zig. In a broad sense, Zig is really trying to provide some of the safety of Rust with the simplicity and ease of C. It touts a few core features such as:

  • No hidden control flow
  • No hidden memory allocations
  • No preprocessor, no macros
  • First-class support for optional standard library
  • Interoperable by design
  • Adjustable Runtime Safety
  • Compile-time code-execution

Continue reading “Need A New Programming Language? Try Zig”