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Inside Dev (Dec 27th, 2018)

Happy Holidays! This end of year recap is presented in partnership with Owl Labs, makers of the Meeting Owl smart 360° conferencing camera. A great way to support the work we do on this newsletter is to check out the Meeting Owl. (Also, you can use code INSIDE for $100 off a Meeting Owl Pro Kit)

I've really enjoyed curating web development news for you this year. As we head into 2019, I pulled together my 25 favorite stories of the year, and I have a few questions:

  1. What do you think was the most under-covered story or trend in development this year?
  2. How can we make this newsletter even more valuable to you in 2019?
  3. Which languages, tools, and frameworks do you use the most often? 

Just hit reply and let me know what you think! I'll be conducting a more in-depth survey in 2019 to further tailor the newsletter around your interests, so keep an eye out for it!

- Sheena

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1. Microsoft bought GitHub for $7.5 billion and completed the acquisition in October 2018. Nat Friedman is now the platform's CEO. - GITHUB 

MORE:  In response to popular demand, GitHub finally started allowing users to delete issues. The platform also launched Actions, a workforce automation tool. Earlier in May 2018, GitHub pages began providing HTTPS support for custom domains. 

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Notable Language Releases:

2. The latest version of JavaScript, ES9 (ES2018), was released and finalized this year. The newest release added rest/spread properties, Asynchronous iteration, Promise.finally(), and more. - SITEPOINT

3. Node.js Versions 10 and 11 was released. The former includes a Workers API, while in the latter, interval timers will be rescheduled even if the previous interval threw an error. - JAXENTER

4. PHP 7.3 was released in December 2018. Features include Trailing Commas in function calls, flexible Heredox and Nowdoc syntax, and more. - LARAVEL

5. Two of Java's major releases, OpenJDK 10 and JDK 11, were launched in March and September 2018 respectively. The former brought features like local-variable type inference, while the latter boasted dynamic class-file constants, local-variable syntax for lambda parameters, and more. - ORACLE

6. Python 3.7, the language's first and only major release for 2018, was released in June 2018. New features include core support for typing module and generic types, a new C API for thread-local storage, time functions with nanosecond resolution, and more. - PYTHON

MORE: According to The Economist, Python is becoming the world's most popular coding language. 


 

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Meet the Owl featured in This Week in Startups 2018 Year in Review

No one has time for awful meetings! The Meeting Owl is a game changer and we use it all the time at Inside. Their smart 360° conferencing camera is seamless and the autofocus feature is LEGIT. If you have a remote team, you need to try a Meeting Owl. Use the 30-day return policy but we don’t think you’ll need it.

Use code INSIDE to get $100 off Meeting Owl Pro Kit.

10. React triumphed over Angular in this year's State of JavaScript 2018 survey. Generally speaking, however, the report reveals 2018 trends were about the same as 2017's. - THE STATE OF JAVASCRIPT 2018

MORE:  Jetbrains’s State of Developer Ecosystem Report reveals React, Express, Vue.js, React Native, and Angular JS are the most regularly used frameworks respectively. Meanwhile, Vue.js gained more stars than React on GitHub in June 2018, while the back-end framework boasting the most stars is Express, followed by Next JS, and Koa.

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11. Microsoft is building a new Edge default web browser powered by Chromium which, it later confirmed, will include support for Chrome extensions. - THE VERGE (2

MORE: The CEO of Mozilla warned that by adopting Chromium, Edge is helping hand over the internet to Google.

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12. After the July 2018 release of Chrome 68, Google began alerting users who visit unencrypted HTTP websites that they're not secure. The move was part of the tech giant's greater efforts to push all sites into switching to the more secure HTTPS. - CNET

MORE:  In January 2018, Mozilla Firefox required HTTPS for all new features built into their browsers. 

  • Some Chrome release highlights: December 2018's Chrome 71 allows you to display relative times using the Internationalization API, October's Chrome 70 adds support for the Public Key Credential, and September's Chrome 69 brought about CSS Scroll Snap.
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13. IBM acquired open source cloud software provider, RedHat, for $34 billion. - FORBES

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14. Python's "Benevolent Dictator For Life" Guido van Rossum announced he was going on a "permanent vacation" from the language, stepping down from his position in July 2018. - THE MAIL ARCHIVE

MORE: In December 2018, Python voted on a new governance model based around a steering council. 

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15. JavaFX is no longer a part of the Java JDK starting with the release of JDK 11 in September 2018. - INFOWORLD

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16. WordPress 5.0's release brought about the flexible block-based Gutenberg editor. The new feature allows site maintainers to create reusable blocks containing media, making it easy for clients to add and move around content while leaving the styling unchanged. - TECH SPOT

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17. On December 31, 2018, PHP will stop offering security support for PHP 5.6.x. According to October 2018 statistics, 62% of websites run a PHP 5.x branch, which means all will be vulnerable unless they update immediately. - ZDNET

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18. In April 2018, Let's Encrypt became the largest SSL certificate issuer for websites, boasting 51.21% domain usage. In August 2018, all major root programs -- including Microsoft, Google, Apple, Mozilla, Oracle, and Blackberry -- officially trusted the Let’s Encrypt root, ISRG Root X1. - NETTRACK / TWITTER

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19. The JavaScript Foundation and Node.js Foundation announced they intend to merge. - LINUX FOUNDATION

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20. According to November 2018 market share reports, Firefox desktop market share sunk to 8.96%, meaning it is even trailing behind Internet Explorer. At 65.57%, Chrome continues to dominate the market. - NET MARKETSHARE

MORE: This year, Firefox allowed users to block all permission requests automatically, affecting geolocation requests, web notifications, and more. Meanwhile, Firefox 62 finally provided support for variable fonts, while Firefox 60 introduced the Web Authentication API and ECMAScript Modules.

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21. HTTP will no longer be using TCP and is instead switching to a protocol layered on top of UDP. - TECHSPOT

MORE: HTTP-over-QUIC was renamed HTTP/3 to avoid confusion. 

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22. Security researchers revealed a range of unblockable web-tracking techniques hackers could use to work around most browsers' privacy settings and tools. According to the researchers, web users can still be tracked "by means of the AppCache API; "lesser-known HTML tags"; the Location response-header; various <meta> redirects; Javascript in PDF tables, Javascript's location.href property; and through service workers." - BOING BOING

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Notable Breaches: 

23. In July 2018, ESLint -- a popular tool for linting Node.js packages -- was compromised. The attack on ESLint-scope 3.72 exposed the credentials of some users. - ESLINT

24. Facebook suffered the largest attack on its computer network on September 28, 2018 thanks to vulnerabilities in a user privacy tool and a birthday video upload tool. The breach exposed the personal information of nearly 50 million users. - THE NEW YORK TIMES

25. In what is now considered one of the biggest data breaches in history, hackers managed to compromise a Marriott International Hotel's Starwood division database containing records of up to 500 million customers. “It’s all about key management and doing encryption in the places where an attacker might be,” remarks Johns Hopkins cryptographer Matthew Green while speculating what may have gone wrong. - BBC

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Written and curated by Inside Dev and Inside Deals Editor Sheena Vasani, a freelance journalist based in California. Proficient in Javascript and Ruby. Got my start at Dev Bootcamp and Thinkful.

Editing team: Lon Harris (editor-in-chief at Inside.com, game-master at Screen Junkies), Krystle Vermes (Breaking news editor at Inside, B2B marketing news reporter, host of the "All Day Paranormal" podcast), and Susmita Baral (editor at Inside, recent bylines in NatGeo, Teen Vogue, and Quartz. Runs the biggest mac and cheese account on Instagram).

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