Tuesday, September 8th, 2009

Prototype 1.6.1; Speed up, clean up, and team up

Category: JavaScript, Prototype

<p>Congratulations to Andrew Dupont and Tobie Langel (new official co-lead of Prototype-core) on the new 1.6.1 release:

  • Full compatibility with new browsers. This version of Prototype fully supports versions 1.0 and higher of Google Chrome, and Internet Explorer 8 in both compatibility mode and super-standards mode.

  • Element metadata storage. Easily associate JavaScript key/value pairs with a DOM element. See the blog post that started it off.

  • New mouse events. Internet Explorer’s proprietary “mouseenter” and “mouseleave” events are now available in all browsers.

  • Improved performance and housekeeping. The frequently used Function#bind, String#escapeHTML, and Element#down methods are faster, and Prototype is better at cleaning up after itself.

  • Built with Sprockets. You can now include the Prototype source code repository in your application and use Sprockets for dependency management and distribution.

  • Inline documentation with PDoc. Our API documentation is now stored in the source code with PDoc so it’s easy to send patches or view documentation for a specific version.

See the RC2 blog post, RC3 blog post, and CHANGELOG for more details.

Some nice fixes here. Really excited to see the new Prototype 2.0 work though and how the team reboots Prototype.

Posted by Dion Almaer at 8:43 am
14 Comments

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3.2 rating from 6 votes

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Great work from the Prototype-team! :)

Comment by lennyhorstink — September 8, 2009

Tobie and Andrew taking the lead seems like just a formality, everyone who follows Prototype knows they were basically leading the project anyways.

I’m excited to hear about Prototype 2. I hope there will be more open discussion about that and some sort of roadmap so we know what to expect. For the last year or so I’m used to hearing “that’s planned for a next release” without things moving forward most of the time. With 1.6.1 out of the way let’s hope those days are behind us and the project can pick up speed again.

Comment by Jadet — September 8, 2009

The next milestone seems to be 1.7, but I’m also very excited about this new release !
https://prototype.lighthouseapp.com/projects/8886-prototype/milestones/current

Comment by fabienmenager — September 8, 2009

I’m happy to hear about Prototype progress, but I have to admit I finally gave in and switched to jQuery. Mostly it has to do with the type of work I’ve been doing, but jQuery’s more concise syntax (shorter method names, fewer methods to do the same thing) generally suits my work better lately. That said, I think out of the box Prototype provides better tools for full application development than jQuery does. But for quick in-page interactions, jQuery can’t be beat.

This isn’t meant to start a holy war, I’m just explaining why I’m less excited about Prototype progress than I would have been a few months ago.

Comment by eyelidlessness — September 8, 2009

Why do they keep developing it?

It’s like inventing the wheel again, just making 10 times
the effort. YUI mootols and jQuery are more than
enough for 99% of the cases, so why won’t these
guys just join an existing group and contribute their knowledge there?

Comment by vsync — September 8, 2009

This is awesome. One of the originals is still going. It’s good to see another MAJOR competitor to help fight the jQuery (a.k.a. the new Internet Explorer) scourge (it’s the only programming system in our modern world to make obfuscated Perl look readable.)

The new features, though, aren’t a big deal to me. Prototype’s Element object is worth the size of Prototype. It’s hard to believe that people actually use that $(‘.asdf’).html(‘this is stupid’) crap in jQuery. Long live DOM-builing without needing a plugin!

Comment by quantum00 — September 8, 2009

@vsync

ridiculous comment. many developers have used prototype extensively in existing projects since it was around long before jQuery. your line of logic makes the case that jQuery was ‘inventing the wheel again’ and that resig should’ve contributed to prototype instead of wasting the effort.

Comment by thnkfstr — September 8, 2009

“Why do they keep developing it?”

Because tons and tons of developers use their library (it’s hard to find statistics, but I think they still have a larger market share than any other single library)?

“YUI mootols and jQuery are more than enough for 99% of the cases, so why won’t these guys just join an existing group and contribute their knowledge there?”

Why should the Prototype devs abandon their users and demand users either use a dead library or rewrite anything written to the Prototype API? For that matter, what possible harm is done by having another choice in libraries?

Comment by eyelidlessness — September 8, 2009

excellent news,

after all those legions of prototype’ers moved into jQuery’s bandwagon, it’s good to see there’s life in the ole girl yet.

great work!

Comment by indiehead — September 9, 2009

[quote]
YUI mootols and jQuery are more than enough for 99% of the cases, so why won’t these guys just join an existing group and contribute their knowledge there?
[/quote]

That’s funny question… I’d like to make another question: why don’t those guys from jQuery, motools, YUI join the Prototype team or contribute with ideas instead of the other way around ?… the reason, Prototype was here before them, I’d say much before…

Anyway, good to know there is progress in Prototype

Comment by auspex — September 9, 2009

Good release, terrible docs.

One of the strong points I used to always tell people about Prototype was its excellent API docs. Now it’s terribly hard to find what you’re looking for.

Anyone know of a mirror of the old docs?

Comment by vvtim — September 9, 2009

They reverted to the old docs :
http://www.prototypejs.org/api
I think they are working on the new ones to be better and more useable.

Comment by fabienmenager — September 9, 2009

The new doc is now available.

http://api.prototypejs.org/

Comment by Les — September 10, 2009

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