The “Developer Experience” Bait-And-Switch

TL;DR: we cannot continue to use as much JavaScript as is now “normal” and expect the web to flourish. At the same time, most developers experience no constraint on their use of JS…until it’s too late. “JS neutral” and “TTI negative” tools are here, but we’re stuck in a rhetorical rut. We need to reset our conversation about “developer experience” to factor in the asymmetric cost of JS.
JavaScript is the web’s CO2. We need some of it, but too much puts the entire ecosystem at risk. Those who emit the most are furthest from suffering the consequences — until the ecosystem collapses. The web will not succeed in the markets and form-factors where computing is headed unless we get JS emissions under control.
Against this grim backdrop, there’s something peculiar about conversations regarding the costs of JS-oriented development: a rhetorical substitution of developer value for user value. Here’s a straw-man composite


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