Mocha -> LiveScript -> JavaScript
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Mocha -> LiveScript -> JavaScript

Brendan Eich of Netscape was the original developer of what was first known as Mocha.  Mocha was later renamed to Livescript, and finally it became known as Javascript. 

In September 1995 "LiveScript" first shipped in beta releases of Netscape Navigator 2.0.  Livescript was renamed JavaScript  in a joint announcement with Sun Microsystems on the 4th of December 1995. 

However, the name change caused confusion, as there is another programming language called Java.  Around the same time Netscape was also adding support for Java technology in the Netscape Navigator browser for the web, hence even more grounds for the confusion. 

It did not take long for Javascript to be highly successful as a client side scripting language for web pages. 

JavaScript very quickly gained widespread success as a client-side scripting language for web pages. As a consequence, Microsoft developed a compatible dialect of the language, naming it JScript to avoid trademark issues. JScript added new date methods to fix the non-Y2K-friendly methods in JavaScript, which were based on java.util.Date.[16] JScript was included in Internet Explorer 3.0, released in August 1996. The dialects are perceived to be so similar that the terms "JavaScript" and "JScript" are often used interchangeably. Microsoft, however, notes dozens of ways in which JScript is not ECMA-compliant.[17]

In November, 1996 Netscape announced that it had submitted JavaScript to Ecma International for consideration as an industry standard, and subsequent work resulted in the standardized version named ECMAScript.[18]

JavaScript has become one of the most popular programming languages on the web. Initially, however, many professional programmers denigrated the language because its target audience was web authors and other such "amateurs", among other reasons.[19] The advent of Ajax returned JavaScript to the spotlight and brought more professional programming attention. The result was a proliferation of comprehensive frameworks and libraries, improved JavaScript programming practices, and increased usage of JavaScript outside of web browsers, as seen by the proliferation of server-side JavaScript platforms.

In January 2009 the CommonJS project was founded with the goal of specifying a common standard library mainly for JavaScript development outside the browser.[20]

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