Standardization and specification of the language began in November 1996 when Netscape delivered it to Ecma International (European Computer Manufacturers Association). Since then it has gone through many iterations and disputes, among others between Netscape and Microsoft, which severely affected early editions.
The latest standard is known as ECMAScript 2016, which is the 7th edition. It was finalized in June 2016. However, it was in the previous edition, ECMAScript 2015 (also known as ES6, ES6 Harmony, or ECMAScript 6), where the real breakthroughs came. With this edition came new syntax for writing more complex applications, such as classes and modules.
Unfortunately, browsers have not yet caught up in the support for these new standards, and a compiler must be used. (React prefers Babel.)
A full documentation of the new features and examples of how they are implemented can be found at http://es6-features.org/.
In those two videos we learn about
- Default Parameter Values
- Template Strings
- Block Scoping (const and let)
- Arrow functions
Some of these are very simple and will make sense right away, others may look a little alien, but as we progress you will see them more often and you will get used to them eventually 😉