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Table of contents
1.
Introduction
2.
TypeScript
2.1.
Installation
3.
Babel
4.
Flow
5.
CoffeeScript Compiler
6.
Reason 
7.
ClojureScript
8.
PureScript
8.1.
Get the Compiler
9.
Sucrase
10.
Shadow-cljs
11.
SWC
12.
Frequently Asked Questions
12.1.
Why is the compiler better than the interpreter?
12.2.
What are Transpilers?
12.3.
What is Translator?
13.
Conclusion
Last Updated: Mar 27, 2024
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Top 10 Best JavaScript Compiler

Author Nidhi Kumari
1 upvote
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Introduction

JavaScript allows us to create interactive web pages. Brendan Eich created Javascript in 1995. It was made for Netscape 2 and was approved as ECMA-262 in 1997. Javascript was initially planned as a browser-only language, but now we use it in various other contexts.

We use JS IDEs to write and compile code in real time. Let’s know more about the best javascript compilers. In this article, we will discuss the Top 10 best Javascript Compilers.

Also See, Javascript hasOwnProperty

TypeScript

The first in our list of best Javascript compilers is TypeScript. It is a typed superset of JS. It compiles to produce clean JS. It provides classes, modules, and interfaces to aid in creating vital elements.

To support a more robust interaction with your editor, TypeScript improves JS's syntax. It prevents errors in your editor.

Typescript Logo

Read More, Phases of compiler

Installation

We can use two ways to install the TypeScript :

  • Through npm.
  • Locally in our project.

The Node.js Package Manager, npm, is the most direct method of installing TypeScript. If npm is already installed on your computer, use this syntax to install TypeScript globally (-g):

npm install -g typescript

 

By searching for the version or help, you can check the installation.

tsc --version
tsc --help

 

It can also be installed locally in your project using the command:

npm install —save-dev typescript

 

This method can remove possible conflicts with other TypeScript projects you may have.

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Babel

The second one on our list of best Javascript compilers is Babel. Babel is a JS compiler for writing next-generation JavaScript. It is a toolchain mainly used to convert ECMAScript 2015+ code into a backward-compatible JavaScript version for use in both modern and outdated browsers.

The key benefits of using Babel for you are as follows:

  • Transform the Syntax.
  • It Polyfill the missing features using the third-party polyfill like core-js.
  • It changes to the source code(codemods).
     

 Here is an example of the working of Babel:

// Input of Babel: ES2015 arrow function
[5, 7, 9].map(n => n + 2);


// Output of Babel: ES5 equivalent
[5, 7, 9].map(function(n) {
  return n + 1;
});
Babel logo

Flow

It is an open-source JS static type checker.  Flow introduces static typing to JS to increase developer efficiency and code quality. 

The benefits of static typing include:

⚡ Code intelligence.

⚡ Code maintenance.

⚡ Navigation.

⚡ Transformation.

⚡ Early error checking.

Here is an example that helps you know early error checking to prevent specific runtime errors.

function checkError(x) {
  return x * 10;
}
checkError(‘Coding Ninjas!!’);

 

We are trying to multiply a number and a string; Flow will catch the error. In contrast, a more careful analysis would call for explicitly annotating x to indicate its type. In the small example, it wouldn't matter, but for huge codebases, the quantity of annotation used might be too much. Flow finds the error in this code without using an annotation.

Flow logo

CoffeeScript Compiler

It is the fourth-best javascript compiler on our list. It compiles CoffeeScript into JS. It is famous as unfancy JS. It is a tool in npm Packages. The goal of CoffeeScript is to show the beneficial features of JS clearly.

There is no runtime analysis because the code compiles one-to-one into the JS. We can use the existing JS library smoothly with CoffeeScript (and vice-versa). The compiled output is readable and typically runs as quickly as handwritten JS of the same size.

Use the following syntax to install it:

# Install locally:
npm install --save-dev coffeescript


# Installing globally:
npm install --global coffeescript
CoffeeScript logo

Reason 

The main benefits for web devs are that Reason compiles from BuckleScript to JavaScript. It has a robust type system. If you already use static type checking, you know why it simplifies refactoring and increases your trust that the code you create is good and won't cause runtime errors in actual use.

Reason has a way to link with JS code that already exists via an FFI because it supports JS as a compile target. By reusing the libraries, you already know and like, you can speed up development while ensuring that the types remain true.

Reason Logo

ClojureScript

A JS-targeting Clojure compiler is called ClojureScript. It is one of the best javascript compilers. Its output JS code is compatible with the Google Closure compiler.

Official Website: https://clojurescript.org/

Latest stable release: 1.11.60

Here you can find All released versions.

The dependency info:

[org.clojure/clojurescript "1.11.60"]

 

The Maven dependency info:

<dependency>
  <groupId>org.clojure</groupId>
  <artifactId>clojurescript</artifactId>
  <version>1.11.60</version>
</dependency>
ClojureScript logo

PureScript

It is one of the best javascript compilers. It compiles to readable JS code. It can also use existing JS files to compile. It's a wide range of libraries to develop web apps.

Some of the benefits of PureScript are:

  1. Good editor support and tooling with rapid rebuilds.
  2. A vibrant community with lots of educational resources.
  3. Create useful apps by combining expressive types with functional approaches, like:
    • Pattern matching and algebraic data types.
    • Extensible records and row polymorphism.
    • More complex polymorphism.
PureScript logo

Get the Compiler

Installation with NPM:

npm install -g purescript

(we need Node version 8 or later for installation with npm.)

 

Installation of Tools:

Spago, a build tool advised for use with PureScript, may be installed using npm.

npm install -g spago

 

Check out this article - Compile Time Polymorphism

Sucrase

Sucrase is a Babel substitute that enables rapid dev builds. It focuses on compiling non-standard language extensions: JSX, TypeScript, and Flow rather than compiling various JS feature to function in the browser.  It assumes you're writing with a recent browser or a recent Node.js version.

It is about 20 times faster than Babel. Hence it is one of the fastest and best javascript compilers.
 

The syntax for installation:

npm install --save-dev sucrase
Sucrase logo

Shadow-cljs

This JS optimizing compiler will vastly minimise the overall size of the code. With a focus on usability and simplicity, shadow-cljs offers everything you need to compile your ClojureScript projects. 

Only the basic config for your build must be configured owing to the build targets offered. Each target provides the best defaults for each context, ensuring users have the best possible experience during development and release builds.

Shadow-cljs logo

SWC

The last but not the least compiler in our list of the best javascript compilers is SWC. SWC stands for Speedy Web Compiler.
 

SWC is a JS compiler developed in Rust. It is highly quick. It serves as a library for both JS and Rust. SWC is an initiative supported by local forums and run entirely by volunteers.

The NPM package manager offers the ability to install SWC as a package.

🔥 Step 1: Run the project after using 'cd' to go to the correct directory.

mkdir swc_project

 

🔥 Step 2: Set up a package.json.

npm init

 

🔥 Step 3: install swc core and its cli tool.

npm install --save-dev @swc/core @swc/cli
SWC Logo

Read More About, Basics of Javascript

Frequently Asked Questions

Why is the compiler better than the interpreter?

The interpreter converts only one program statement at a time into machine code. The Compiler scans the entire program, instantly transforming it into machine code. An interpreter interprets the source code in a little amount of time. However, the process takes much longer to complete overall.

What are Transpilers?

A transpiler is software that converts source code from one language to another at the same level of abstraction. It is also called a source-to-source compiler or a transcompiler.

What is Translator?

A program called a translator turns source code into object code. The three main categories of translators are Compilers, Interpreters and Assemblers.

Conclusion

We ran through the top ten best javascript compilers. We discussed the installation process and their features.

We hope this blog has helped you. Please visit these fabulous blogs to learn more about compilers:

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