Hacker News new | past | comments | ask | show | jobs | submit login

Tip to anyone rolling out a library and wanting others to start using it: It'd be helpful if the home page or the FAQ explained what io.js actually does and why a developer might want to explore it further. "Bringing ES6" is only helpful if you know what ES6 is and have already decided it's something you need. Likewise, the FAQ simply says io.js is compatible with Node.js and npm, but that doesn't give you much to work with. Can someone who knows the project explain the benefits?

You're right that the page linked in OP needs improvement. The phrase to focus on is this:

> io.js is an npm compatible platform originally based on node.js

It's not a library, it's a platform that's based on node.js. It's more or less a fork of node or "spork" as they call it.

The github repo is a bit more clear: https://github.com/iojs/io.js

The main point seems to be that it's run on an open governance model: https://github.com/iojs/io.js/blob/v1.x/GOVERNANCE.md

If I were them, I'd say something like:

"io.js is an api-compatible alternative to the node.js runtime, including support for the npm ecosystem, that aims to release faster than the node.js release cycle and move according to a community-driven open governance model."

Given the tremendous volume of packages released to npm, the current one-liner initially just doesn't convey much information. In context of the comments here, it all parses perfectly, but I was one of many who needed this context to understand the (apparent) goals of the project.

We should start referring to PHP as a "Composer compatible platform" and Python as a "PyPI compatible platform"

The huge collection of modules on npm is one of the strongest factors node.js has going for it, so it makes sense for them to emphasize that they're not breaking compatibility with this in forking node.

Yes, but something "JavaScript runtime with npm compatibility" would be friendlier and significantly easier for people to understand.

They don't provide the Javascript runtime - Google does that. This is a fork of Node.js - glossing over this is at least a little disrespectful to Node.js.

There was a trademark issue between them and Joyent that also made the node-forward GH repo to go private. They might not be comfortable using term Node.JS on the frontpage.

> The main point seems to be that it's run on an open governance model

Ya, I think the main problem is that no one has any idea what that means from a practical sense. Will my code go faster? Will I get better support? etc.

Basically anything you can do in Node.js you can do in Io.js. It's nothing that really breaks backwards compatibility. The benefits of Io.js over Node.js is that it'll have a faster release cycle bringing in newer versions of V8 JavaScript Engine, allowing you to use newer features of that in your code.

In Node.js to use ES6 you would have to use the --harmony flag to enable them because the version of V8 that is used is so old. Whereas in Io.js anything V8 deems stable is available in Io.js without having to use the --harmony flag.

Guidelines | FAQ | Lists | API | Security | Legal | Apply to YC | Contact