JavaScript in 2016: let's make it clear

Today's post isn't quite of the strictly-technical kind I usually write, but rather a response to some late trend about JavaScript that has gone on for far too long.

This year's beginning has been scattered with ranting articles bearing overdramatic titles, such as this one and that one, coming from developers who have come to hate the modern JS ecosystem. As a strong believer in the opposite point of view, I will hereby review their concerns one by one.

  • "Node.js is immature": yeah, right, that must be why PayPal has been using it in production for two years now. Oh, and by the way, the whole fork story has come to an end, the most obvious proof of that being the fact node's versioning has jumped from v0.x to v4.x, to account for io.js's own three stable major versions. However, apart from build systems (such as Grunt) running on the developer's machine, what does it ever have to do with front-end code? Those build systems could be running Ruby for that matter, it doesn't change a thing.
  • "Maintaining a project / a development environment is hard": maybe you bet on the wrong horse. I chose to use gulp a while ago (as in "several years", actually not long after it came out in the first place) as it seemed to be the tool that best suited my needs. It hasn't changed since, nor have I switched it for anything else. I read up on webpack and other solutions, but didn't change just because they were newer: gulp kept being ideal for me while remaining relevant in the market (as in "used at all"). This leads me to the next item...
  • "There is no predominant solution": oh no, now we have to think about what we're doing! The JS ecosystem indeed is in its teenage phase, as tools are blooming everywhere all the time. But in the end, only a few will survive: the ones that are solidly maintained, that managed to gather a community around them and, the most important thing, do what they claim to do, and do it right. It's just like any other programming ecosystem around here, the only difference being there are more different choices. Intelligence is all it takes to choose the right tool for the right job, if that job needs any tool in the first place, and wiseness is all it takes to check which tools will last in the long run, and which of these are of interest to you: these are the ones you want to go on with. You know what? I brag about React a lot, but I haven't even tried any Flux implementation around (like Redux) yet, and thank you, I feel quite fine.
  • "Everyone uses JS for everything, even when it's wrong": yes, some people do that. It doesn't mean everyone does that. Not everyone fires up React for any static page. Stop thinking what you read and remember is everything that exists. Who's going to write an article just to say they built an app without a JS framework and a build system, just to keep people like you happy and confident in their own denial?

JavaScript is a messy language, but it's getting better: ES6 is great and ES7 will be, too. React is great. Node is great. You are not supposed to love them three (or anything else). If you do, you will probably build great stuff with them. If you don't, it's no big deal, but don't ruin the party for everyone. Stop thinking you know better and bring up one actually constructive argument to begin with. Target specifics, instead of just concluding everything is turning to shit, because you just sound alike.

Gawd.