Proposal for the `enum` keyword


I would like to propose an addition of the 'enum' keyword. Most, if not all of you already know the basic use of enums. But let me elaborate why it would be useful in case of ECMAScript.

There are many cases which I stumbled upon where ECMAScript developers define const objects as basic "enums". There is usually a need to stay consistent with some predefined values descibing a behaviour or entity trait. For this example, I'll use a simple accountType enum (basic, premium, VIP).

Currently, the best way to define this in code would be

const accountType = {
  basic: 'basic',
  premium: 'premium',
  vip: 'vip',

It would also be ideal to then freeze this object to avoid situations of silent property redefinitions or additions. This works, but I consider this to be too verbose and a great candidate for simplification and standardization.

With 'enum' keyword available, we could simply define this as:

// definition
enum AccountType {

// usage
let account = {
  username: 'johndoe',
  email: '',
  type: AccountType.basic,

Enums should be completely frozen and impossible to modify after the definition, by implementation.
It should be decided what the enum would be serialized into. I would definitely support the string-by-default implementation, where AccountType.basic would evaluate as basic. integer-based enums are more ambiguous when persisting their values so string representation would probably be a way to go.

This way, there would be no more questions regarding "what is the best way to define enums in javascript" or discussions on stackoverflow about freezing an object, avoiding issues with serialization etc.

I would not endorse overcomplication of this topic. This means that I don't ask for heterogenous enums, integer-based enums with possibility of defining start of sequence etc. (I am pulling these examples from TypeScript implementation). For now, at least, I consider the above-described implementation as "more than good enough" for majority of use cases.

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Enums are great when you have a requirement for saving space and optimizing performance.

They are available in typescript which IMHO is necessary if you are porting a bunch of code (or coders) from CSharp or Java but a colossal waste of time and energy if you are an experienced javascript coder.

Perhaps you should consider using typescript?

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necessary if you are porting a bunch of code (or coders) from CSharp or Java

a bigger question is are there any programs from c# or java worth porting over to javascript (vs porting to wasm)? my intuition is no, there's very little.

the interesting bits of most programs are their i/o routines, which could take hundreds to thousands of sloc to write in statically-typed c#/java.

instead of porting these overengineered io-routines from c#/java, it's usually cheaper to simply rewrite them in nodejs' superior fs/http/net/child_process builtin apis, with just a few dozen to hundred sloc of dynamic, throwaway code.

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