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AI / Frontend Development / JavaScript / Software Development

Dev News: Angular’s New Loading, an AI Compiler, and JS Runs Wasm

Angular 17 will introduce a new feature called deferred loading. Also, a new AI compiler and why JavaScript is popular for WebAssembly.
Oct 21st, 2023 4:00am by
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Angular 17 has introduced deferred loading, according to Angular Addicts Editor Gergely Szerovay, an IT engineer and full-stack developer.

This is beyond the lazy loading technique introduced in previous Angular versions, he shared. Lazy loading enhances user experience by reducing the initial page load time. It does this by loading non-essential content in the background and presenting it when the user interacts with the page in some way. “Lazy-loading also applies to the dependencies of the content of the block: all the components, directives and pipes will be lazy-loaded, too,” Szerovay explained.

Deferred loading defers adding the lower priority parts of the user interface and focuses resources on loading the most critical parts of the page, according to the request for comment about deferred loading. “For example, a page which shows a main video and a list of comments may be optimized to load the video first, and defer loading the code to render the comments until the video is fully buffered and ready to play,” the RFC noted.

Angular 17 is set for release in early November.

New AI/ML Compiler Based on Swift

PassiveLogic has created a new machine learning and AI compiler. It claims test runs on equivalent models running on the same host processor hit speeds 322 times faster than Google’s TensorFlow and 238 times faster than Meta’s PyTorch. Those compilers are primarily used for natural language processing (NLP), computer vision, and audio processing.

PassiveLogic offers a platform for generative autonomy, but its main focus is creating technology for autonomous buildings. The compiler is written in Swift, the language used by Apple for its iOS, in collaboration with Apple.

“In contrast to the AI models that exist today written in frameworks like TensorFlow or PyTorch, PassiveLogic’s framework in Swift leverages language-integrated differentiable computing that not only merges systems programming and AI, but enables a new generation of heterogeneous networks and typed interfaces that can be clicked together,” the company stated.

PassiveLogic wants to expand Swift to the industrial market, where it could be leveraged to replace legacy languages such as C++. It has identified and reported 33 issues to the Swift language project and provided 27 patches this year, including some for longstanding language bugs.

“Differentiable Swift changes the game for edge-based AI and how we build applications beyond conventional deep learning,” CEO Troy Harvey said.

JavaScript Second Most Widely Used for WebAssembly

JavaScript is the second most widely used language for WebAssembly, which is notable because JavaScript doesn’t compile to Wasm, Scott Logic CTO Colin Eberhardt pointed out in a recent blog post about the State of WebAssembly 2023 survey results.

“To run JavaScript code, the runtime is compiled to WebAssembly, with your code running within the WebAssembly-hosted interpreter,” Eberhardt explained. “This approach, which might sound inefficient, is surprisingly practical and increasingly popular.”

Languages used in WebAssembly according to Scott Logic 2023 survey

Languages used in WebAssembly according to Scott Logic 2023 survey.

It doesn’t offer a speed advantage, but such deployments do get the security and isolation benefits of WebAssembly, he added. For more on how that all comes together, he recommended an in-depth article from the Shopify team that describes how they supported Shopify functions written in JavaScript, which runs on a WebAssembly platform.

Rust remains the most frequently used language for Wasm, for the third straight year.

“Rust has always been a good fit for WebAssembly; it is a modern system-level language that has broad popularity (the Stack Overflow [report] revealed it is the most desired language seven years in a row), it also happens to be a popular language for authoring WebAssembly runtimes and platforms,” Eberhardt stated.

Swift, Apple’s iOS language, and Zig are also seeing a significant surge in adoption, Eberhardt added. Interestingly, there’s more interest in Zig, Kotlin and C# than actual usage at this point, the post noted.

WebAssembly is still primarily used for web application development, but its use in serverless is on the rise, he said. Also, there’s an increase in the use of WebAssembly in a plugin environment.

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