A Brief Overview of ES6

ECMAScript 6, or ES6, is a newer version of JavaScript. It has several unique capabilities that weren’t possible in previous versions of JavaScript, for example:

  • Variables can be set with the terms let and const
  • The let keyword is used for block scoping so it doesn’t affect global values
  • TheĀ const keyword is used to protect the value of certain variables – you use this keyword for values that shouldn’t be reassigned
  • It allows you to use template strings to tap into the functionality of template languages to format your JavaScript code with variables like so: `${yourVariableHere}`
  • TheĀ spread operator can turn elements of an array into arguments of a function call or into elements of an array literal
  • Allows us to make classes in JavaScript (can create one super class that other classes inherit)
  • Can pass default values in functions for when you don’t explicitly pass anything for them

In order for browsers to understand ES6, you need to transpile the code. Babel, Traceur, and Closure are used for transpiling code, although Babel is known for supporting the most ES6 features.

For larger scale projects, you can use build tools like Webpack with ES6 – this allows us to load our dependencies. Npm creates a package.json file that runs dependencies.

 

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