Caution: This post had been written before io.js was merged into Node.js.
@mikeal Is node now the IE6 of server-side JS?— Yehuda Katz (@wycats) January 14, 2015
Node v0.10.34 (Stable) http://t.co/VimTZXc1VK tomorrow is v0.11.15 (the release candidate for v0.12)— node js (@nodejs) December 17, 2014
Actually, a tweet about the version-up was uploaded on the official twitter account of Node.js in the last December. Many people was expecting they might be able to see some news on the following day, or at least in a while. It’s been about a month, and none at all. Now the tweet is being retweeted to mock Node.js itself.
Then, what’s io.js? If you’re a kind of people who enjoy looking around GitHub Explorer tab everyday, you may have found that io.js has been being on the list of Trending Repositories for a quite long time. On the io.js repo, it introduces itself as ‘A spork of Node.js with an open governance model’.
Basically, io.js is a fork of Node.js. You can think the relation between Node.js and io.js like the one between Apple’s WebKit and Google’s Blink which is basically a fork of WebKit. However, being different from Node.js, io.js adopted an open governance model, as it described, so that the development is not led by a few people but in a structured and fast process. Basically, there’s a Technical Committee(TC) group and they have a regular meeting and communication to decide the way how io.js should be now and in the future. The TC group even includes Isaac Schlueter, who used to manage the Node.js development. It also welcomes new contributors to join the TC group. For more details, please refer to GOVERNANCE.md in the repo.
io.js looks very successful so far. As io.js wants, the development process is very speedy. Although it’s not been long since it forked Node.js, v1.0 including ES6 support has already been released. node-webkit, one of the influential Node.js projects, has changed its name to NW.js, saying now it’s using io.js. For sure, io.js is compatible with existing Node.js projects, as it’s just a fork, so if the new stable release of Node.js keeps being delayed, users will definitely move to io.js for the shiny new features. To be honest, I’ve already done.