Looking to eliminate the need for plug-ins such as Flash, Sencha today released Ext JS 4, an upgrade to its JavaScript framework that enables developers to create charts and other drawings with a custom engine that works natively in the browser, according to Aditya Bansod, Sencha’s senior director of product management.

Other key new capabilities in the release are an enhanced data package that allows developers to use a model-view-controller architecture to build out their Web applications, and new theming technology.

“The industry in general is moving away from plug-ins and more to core browser technology,” Bansod said. “Enterprises can better control the experience, and also there are no compatibility issues.”

Bansod said that iMac and MacBook computers from Apple no longer ship with Adobe’s Flash Player. With Ext JS 4, developers can use Scalable Vector Graphics to create charts and drawings that are browser- and resolution-independent, he said.

The new data package “adds strong MVC styles, associations and validations,” Bansod said, adding that it also enables data to be stored locally and sent to a JSON server, for example, by proxy.

Finally, Ext JS 4 uses SASS and Compass as a semantic layer on top of CSS for the customization of themes. “That is based on technology we first used in Sencha Touch,” the framework for mobile application UI creation, Bansod said.

Ext JS 4 supports CSS3 styling, but it can also work with older browsers that don’t support it. “It’s all about the ease of use of theming and, we do all the work to make [applications] look perfect, down to IE 6,” Bansod said. “For us, it’s about more high-performance, more accuracy on the browser.”