transpile vs. compile

2020-03-03

 | 

~1 min read

 | 

117 words

What does it mean when we say that babel is a transpiler?

According to Shawn Wang (known on the internet as swxy), when babel transpiles, it “compile[s] from Javascript to Javascript”.1

So, if we’re comparing transpiling to compiling - the former is from it’s language to itself (at a target specified by the developer to be compatible with the consuming application — in this case the various browsers) while the latter is taking a language and transforming it into a different language - whether it’s a lower level language (C or C++) or machine code.

Footnotes


Hi there and thanks for reading! My name's Stephen. I live in Chicago with my wife, Kate, and dog, Finn. Want more? See about and get in touch!