File Under: JavaScript

JS1k Contest Highlights Tiny, Powerful Code Experiments

JavaScript sometimes gets a bad rap. Accusations of page size bloating, superfluous effects and failure to gracefully degrade are common gripes. But the truth is that none of those things are inherent in JavaScript, they’re just common in bad web design.

Take page size for example. Sure, JQuery is big, but even tiny scripts can do some pretty amazing stuff. Proving that claim is exactly the point of JS1k, a recent contest to see what developers could create in less than one kilobyte of JavaScript.

Among the rules of JS1k: The files size must be under a kilobyte, the demo must work in Firefox, Safari, Chrome and Opera and external libraries were forbidden — short scripts that reference 30MB worth of external scripts were disallowed.

The contest winners were announced Tuesday at the JSCONF event in Berlin. The experiments are really incredible given the files size restrictions. The winner Legend Of The Bouncing Beholder, is an old-school arcade game reminiscent of early Mario Brothers games.

Other winners include a Tetris game, a multiplayer pong game and our personal favorite Mother Fucking Lasers. Head on over to see the rest of the demos and be amazed at what you can do with just 1k of code. Be sure to view source so you can see how these tiny scripts work.

Note that, as of this writing, the site is experiencing ridiculous traffic, so if you get a 503 error, check back later when things have calmed down.

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