Oracle Proposes Nashorn, A New JavaScript Engine for OpenJDK

By Monday, November 26, 2012 0 , , Permalink 0

Nashorn will be headed by Jim Laskey, multi-language Lead at Oracle and the project will be sponsored by HotSpot group. The project proposes implementation of JavaScript such that it can run standalone JavaScript applications via the JSR 223 APIs. Nashorn’s design will enable it to take advantage of some of the newer technologies like MethodHandles and InvokeDynamic APIs.

“This project will be an entirely new code base, focused on these newer technologies. In particular the project will utilize the MethodHandles and InvokeDynamic APIs described in JSR-292” note Jim Laskey and John Coomes in an email.  The developers intend to create a parser API that will scan JavaScript code, generate ASTs (Abstract Syntax Trees) which can then be fed to a compiler to get JVM byte code. The JavaScript implementation thus obtained “will be in conformance with ECMA-262 Edition 5.1”.

Oracle has an internal project going on and it will soon transfer the source code to the OpenJDK project. Voting on whether the project will be allowed to be part of the OpenJDK project or not has already begun but, only OpenJDK members are eligible to vote. You can find the Nashorn blog here.

In related OpenJDK news, RedHAT developers are working on an ARM64 port of OpenJDK.