Speedy SquirrelFish on Safari

WebKit's new JavaScript interpreter may improve performance for the iPhone.

The Surfin' Safari blog announced SquirrelFish today, a new javascript interpreter for WebKit that is 1.6 times faster than the current interpreter. This is incredible, as Safari is already a super-fast browser, but as John Gruber points out in Daring Fireball, it may mean improved JavaScript support for the iPhone. If you've read much of this blog, you already know my opinion about the whole "JavaScript on the iPhone really sucks" thing. I was recently reminded of this when translating some jQuery/JSON scripting from the Web to the iPhone. What ran as a fairly simple and speedy app on the Web became unusable on the iPhone, and I had to strip out tons of code to get even basic functions up to speed. Keep your fingers crossed that SquirrelFish makes it to the iPhone, and soon!  I'm not sure if its release so close to the WWDC conference means it won't be making it to the upgraded "iPhone 2" that everyone is expecting to be announced, or if an iPhone software update will be released after the new iPhones hit the market.  The sooner the better! The creators of SquirrelFish say this is just the beginning of new breakthroughs in compile times, and it sounds like they've done some very intensive and boring research to create their mutant aquatic rodent.  Thank goodness for the brilliant and patient minds (read: obsessives) who sort these complicated things out so the rest of us can have a better Web experience. Oh, and yes... as everyone seems to notice, the SquirrelFish logo is way badass. It looks like it may evolve into a StimpyFish in a later release. Leave comments on this blog, or let's talk on Twitter or Facebook.

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