Friday, November 20, 2009

Open Source Closure

Google has recently open-sourced it's javascript tools called Closure. It is this suite of tools that Google uses in every web application that it hosts. They claim to have made it available for download so that developers of other web applications have an opportunity to make the web faster as a whole. That sounds a bit to me like "hey, if you drop the javascript toolkit you are currently using and use ours, your application will be faster. yay!"

I don't necessarily buy it if that is the case. Sure, Google has nice, well-performing web applications that would certainly impress your customers if you could offer something similar. But this market is already flooded with good quality javasctipt toolkits. jQuery is tough to compete with for most intents and purposes.

One area that Closure has an advantage in is the fact that it is shipped with a javascript compiler, an area relatively unexplored. At most, the javascript of many application might be slightly compressed before it is served up to clients.

If you aren't already heavily invested in another javascript toolkit, closure may be worth looking at. If that, or any other kit for that matter, is the one you choose, stick with it. Don't mix and match javascript toolkits. You'll just be asking for trouble.