Feeds

Microsoft releases JavaScript alternative

TypeScript embraces and extends JavaScript, but is open source

Business security measures using SSL

Microsoft has released a new JavaScript development environment, dubbed TypeScript, and says it is designed to help developers write more complex apps with the popular scripting language.

Long-time Reg readers may recall that Microsoft has form giving the world new technologies, but not always for altruistic reasons. During its epic antitrust battle with the US Department of Justice, Microsoft's in-house use of the terms “embrace and extend” or “embrace and smother” came to light to describe the practice of releasing non-standard products, among them software development tools, then using Microsoft's market share to none-too-gently steer the industry towards buying those products to the detriment of competitors.

That strategy seems not to be in play this time, as TypeScript is free, open source and compiles into garden-variety JavaScript that Microsoft has taken pains to state repeatedly will run on any browser, host or operating system.

TypeScript is also being pitched as a developer's saviour, as by extending JavaScript developers will have more and more potent tools to build the kind of large-scale apps being built around HTML 5 in the browser and on mobile devices. Apps destined for the Windows 8 store are also cited as worthy of the more robust environment TypeScript is said to afford.

In a video posted to introduce the language (and embedded below), Microsoft Technical Fellow Anders Hejlsberg argues that TypeScript is needed because JavaScript was never intended for the roles it has found itself serving today and lacks many of the structures developers find useful in other languages. TypeScript is designed to add those extra bits, with static typing and classes at the top of Hejlsberg's list of developer desirables.

Existing JavaScript code and libraries work in TypeScript, and Microsoft has arranged TypeScript support for Emacs, Vim and Sublime Text. A TypeScript editor plugin for Visual Studio 2012 has also been released. Code samples are already available, too.

Initial response to TypeScript has tended towards the positive. While a few narky comments have appeared on Microsoft's announcement post, Twitter sentiment seems broadly happy about the new language. Your own opinions can, of course, be recorded below. ®

New hybrid storage solutions

More from The Register

next story
'Windows 9' LEAK: Microsoft's playing catchup with Linux
Multiple desktops and live tiles in restored Start button star in new vids
Not appy with your Chromebook? Well now it can run Android apps
Google offers beta of tricky OS-inside-OS tech
New 'Cosmos' browser surfs the net by TXT alone
No data plan? No WiFi? No worries ... except sluggish download speed
SUSE Linux owner Attachmate gobbled by Micro Focus for $2.3bn
Merger will lead to mainframe and COBOL powerhouse
iOS 8 release: WebGL now runs everywhere. Hurrah for 3D graphics!
HTML 5's pretty neat ... when your browser supports it
Greater dev access to iOS 8 will put us AT RISK from HACKERS
Knocking holes in Apple's walled garden could backfire, says securo-chap
NHS grows a NoSQL backbone and rips out its Oracle Spine
Open source? In the government? Ha ha! What, wait ...?
Google extends app refund window to two hours
You now have 120 minutes to finish that game instead of 15
Intel: Hey, enterprises, drop everything and DO HADOOP
Big Data analytics projected to run on more servers than any other app
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Security and trust: The backbone of doing business over the internet
Explores the current state of website security and the contributions Symantec is making to help organizations protect critical data and build trust with customers.