April 28, 2020
Some notable features TypeScript borrows from other languages include:
TypeScript has a relatively stable position on the market, consistently placing somewhere in the middle of the pack in the annual Stack Overflow Survey.
Most popular programming, scripting, and markup languages. Source: Stack Overflow Survey 2019
In terms of popularity, in the last two years TypeScript pulled ahead of Ruby, Shell, and C. In the latest State of Octoverse report, which tracks programming language popularity over time, TypeScript ranks seventh.
TypeScript among the most popular programming languages in recent years. Source: The State of Octoverse
Moreover, TypeScript placed second in the most-loved languages category in the 2019 Stack Overflow Survey—a tie with Python.
Thanks to a 15% reduction in bugs across the board, most developers observe a corresponding reduction in development time, which, in turn, gives them more time to work on application logic and fix errors that can be detrimental to in-app performance and usability. TypeScript’s compiler also helps shorten the QA and testing process in later stages of development.
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Catering to professionals all around the globe with seamless and interactive collaboration and communication tools, Slack has fast become an indispensable resource to many around the globe. It’s also one of the most popular applications to have been built with TypeScript.
Slack decided to adopt TypeScript to keep the risk of their desktop app crashing to a minimum. Slack’s engineering team was particularly happy with the decrease in bugs caused by misspelling or other errors when converting their code to TypeScript.
The development team behind Asana has also been quite outspoken in their support for TypeScript. Having adopted the technology in 2013, Asana now writes all of its new frontend code in TypeScript.
On their blog, Asana engineers published a number of posts on the subject, including a breakdown of the good practices they have been following for TypeScript, and a detailed list of pros and cons of the language as seen from the developer perspective.
A leader in digital banking, Revolut began incrementally adopting TypeScript in June 2018. They liked the language so much that they soon migrated to TypeScript entirely.
Accenture’s engineering team has its own Github repository, with 111 repos as of April 2020, and the company is actively looking for developers skilled in TypeScript.
One of the most prominent examples of TypeScript adoption, Angular was written entirely in the language.
As Google built Angular with large-scale apps in mind, it should come as no surprise then that they chose TypeScript as the main language for Angular-developed applications.
Ionic uses TypeScript in a variety of its products: Ionic Framework, Stencil, Studio, and AppFlow. On their company blog, the Ionic team explained that they chose TypeScript to scale large and complex codebases.
Because of this, TypeScript is the go-to programming language for building larger applications with big codebases, multiple dependencies, and modules.
Now let’s look in detail at how they translate into improving the development experience.
TypeScript helps developers quickly figure out the purpose of a variable within the code (you can quickly check the variable name and the data it contains). Plus, TypeScript can actually suggest available properties in functions, classes, or components.
Being able to quickly look up a variable is important because it reduces the likelihood of calling the wrong function or accidentally skipping a variable declaration—fixing bugs like these is cumbersome and takes time.
TypeScript is a static language, meaning it performs type checks upon compilation, flagging type errors and helping developers spot mistakes early on in development.
According to University College London, static type systems can reduce the number of bugs by up to 15%. While that may not seem like a lot at first glance, when you consider large codebases, a drop like that can mean saving hours of precious development time.
Clear and readable code is easy to maintain, even for newly onboarded developers. Because TypeScript calls for assigning types, the code instantly becomes easier to understand and work with. As such, TypeScript code is essentially self-documenting, which allows distributed teams to work much more efficiently without having to spend a lot of time familiarizing themselves with a project.
TypeScript’s integration with editors (equipped with an autocomplete feature) makes it much easier to validate the code thanks to context-aware suggestions. TypeScript can determine what methods and properties can be assigned to specific objects, and these suggestions tend to increase developer productivity (and decrease the need to check the props).