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WebKit for Keynote

Published on Wed, 5 March 2008

An interesting email passed through the webkit-dev mailing list today. In what appears to be a small glimpse into what goes on in preparation for a Stevenote, Geoffrey Garen (Apple) noted in a reply to an email from Akos Kiss (Department of Software Engineering, University of Szeged, Hungary) that one of the reasons WebKit likes to do its own thing and not depend on code it doesn’t own is to be able to fix problems with very short notice. Citing the example of, “12 hours before a keynote address”.

Akos Kiss (Department of Software Engineering, University of Szeged, Hungary):

b) JIT compilation to Java bytecode or ActionScript bytecode. Comment: Huge work. Currently available compiler implementations do not fit to the architecture of the JS engine.

Geoffrey Garen (Apple):

Right. We’re also reluctant to rely on code that we don’t own. We’ve seen very large performance wins from tightly integrating and customising all the components of the web stack. We also need the freedom to fix crashes and compatibility problems on very short notice (for example, 12 hours before a keynote address).

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