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WebAssembly is an open standard and virtual instruction set architecture that runs on the web. It's often abbreviated as Wasm. The language lets developers compile programs ahead of time to a binary format that runs in browsers at near-native speeds. Using WebAssembly, developers can make web apps run faster by offloading performance-critical portions of their code from JavaScript to more efficient languages like C/C++ or Rust without sacrificing platform portability or requiring plugins for execution support. This technology has begun to blur the line between what has traditionally been seen as native application development and browser-based applications, allowing for sophisticated and high-performance web applications that are more computationally intensive than typical JavaScript-based solutions.