Updates on Angular 2 From the Recent ng-conf

angularI recently attended ng-conf (the annual Angular conference) held in Salt Lake City during the first week of May. Over 1500 developers were there. Of course the big news was that Angular 2, the next version of the framework, has moved from beta to release candidate.  Angular 2 (which departs substantially from earlier versions of Angular) has a forward looking emphasis, incorporating emerging technologies like web components, ES 2015 (the new version of JavaScript) and TypeScript.  You can read more about it here: http://angular.io.

Not surprisingly most of the workshops at the conference focused on Angular 2.  A single session track ran on both Day 1 and Day 3 and you can find the YouTube videos for those sessions on YouTube at this link: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLOETEcp3DkCq788xapkP_OU-78jhTf68j.  There were multiple concurrent sessions on Day 2 and not all of them were captured on video. I attended several that covered building components in Angular 2, TypeScript and unit testing.

Developer uptake has been strong with upwards of 360,000 developers who are active on the Angular 2 site.  Several enterprise partners that have started using Angular 2 were present, including Capital One, Fidelity Investments and the Weather Channel.

Some key takeaways:

  1. Typescript (with its support for decorators that are proposed for future versions of JavaScript and are a key part of Angular 2) is emerging as the language of choice for Angular 2. Typescript transpiles into ES 5 that can be used with current browsers.
  2. A lot of emphasis is being put on optimizing performance and reducing the download size of Angular 2.
  3. Observables using RxJS are the default for returning data over HTTP.
  4. NativeScript with Angular 2 for building IOS and Android mobile apps was receiving a lot of positive attention.
  5. Angular Universal a community-driven project that adds server-side rendering to Angular 2 looks like it will be a key part of the Angular 2 eco-system.  Capital One’s use of it was highlighted.

Although it has reached release candidate stage, there are several key deliverables that are not fully completed at this point but are promised in the near future:

  • The beta router was deprecated and replaced just before the release announcement.  The new router will take some additional time before it is feature complete.
  • Animation – the API is final and will be released in a few weeks.
  • Offline template compilation – this is tied to performance optimization and is not done yet. Angular 2’s final release will come out once this is completed.

Other projects related to Angular 2 but not part of the core release are in the works as well:

If you are considering moving forward with an Angular 2 project in the near future or are just interested in the new framework, feel free to reach out (sales@aisteam.com) if you have any questions on the topics covered.

About Kevin Hennessy

Kevin Hennessy is a Senior Software Engineer with AIS in Raleigh, North Carolina. He holds a Master’s Degree in Information Technology from Rochester Institute of Technology and a B.A. degree in English from Yale University. He has over 15 years of experience as a developer, team lead and solutions architect working at the intersection of people and technology on web-based projects using the Microsoft technology stack. He recently authored an article on KnockoutJS for JSMag, and has spoken at code camps and user groups on a range of topics, including Knockout, BreezeJS, JavaScript frameworks, and agile methodologies.