Connection Strings

Random Finds Friday: Electron Supports TypeScript, MCSA Exam Name Changes

Electron now includes TypeScript support with a TypeScript definition file that's included automatically in all installs. And several developer-related certifications are renamed to highlight Microsoft-specific technologies.

Here's a mish-mash of stuff that might matter to developers for a slow Friday news day.

Electron Supports TypeScript
Electron, a framework based on Node.js and Chromium for building cross-platform desktop apps using JavaScript, CSS, and HTML, now has TypeScript support by way of a TypeScript definition file that's now included in the Electron npm package. The TypeScript definition file "provides detailed annotations of the entire Electron API" that "can improve your Electron development experience even if you're writing vanilla JavaScript," according to a blog post from Zeke Sikelianos, a GitHub software developer working on the Electron open source project, about the file addition.

The TypeScript definition files are included with Electron version 1.6.0, and Sikelianos notes that the file is derived from Electron's structured API documentation, so any new Electron install will have the latest definition file.

If you're not familiar with Electron, you should check some of the apps you're using. I was looking at the app list, and noticed some of the apps on the list are ones I use regularly, like Colorpicker, iClipboard, and Youtube-mp3. The Tidal streaming service is an Electron-based app.

MCSA Titles Renamed
Microsoft Learning has made a few nomenclature changes to some developer-related exams and certifications. A Born2Learn blog post from Microsoft psychometrician Liberty Munson a few weeks ago shows that the changes affect three MCSA titles: Data Science is now Machine Learning, Big Data Engineering is now Data Engineering with Azure, and Cloud Database Development is now Azure Database Development. The renaming appears to emphasize Microsoft-specific technologies.

Munson notes that with the changes to these titles, there's also an expanded list of exams that can be used as electives for achieving the MCSE: Data Management and Analysis premium title for 2017. It's not clear from the graphic, though, what exams were added, but know that there are 12 to choose from now.

.NET Your Wall
Remember the Visual Studio 2017 poster that was made available on the day of the suite's official release? There's a .NET counterpart to it that was distributed to Build attendees. It's also available here, for printing up. If you print it, send me a pic of your wall with either poster up and I'll highlight it in a future Connection Strings column.

In this week's .NET Insight Podcast, Microsoft claims to be managing the largest Git repo on the planet through GitHub and GVFS, so we look at the numbers. Plus, an excerpt from David Foote's talk at Live360! in Orlando on careers that are defining digital transformation.

Links mentioned in this show:

Here are a handful of other links we've run across that might be useful to you, in no particular order and definitely not conforming to any particular theme:

  • James Governor's MonkChips: How AWS Cloud is demolishing the cult of youth
  • Raygun: How Raygun increased throughput by 2,000% with .NET Core (over Node.js)
  • ars Technica: In a throwback to the '90s, NTFS bug lets anyone hang or crash Windows 7, 8.1
  • The web is being misused: Opera's founder on why Google tracking should be banned
  • recode: The gig economy workforce will double in four years
  • Dev All The Things: DevOps is a culture, not a role!
  • Intentional: Charles Simonyi, Founder, Chairman, and CTO
  • @yairchu: How git-mediate made me stop fearing merge conflicts and start treating them like an easy game of Minesweeper!
  • Adam Drake: Enough with the microservices
  • Chad Austin: Writing a Really, Really Fast JSON Parser
  • Performance is a Feature!: Lowering in the C# Compiler (and what happens when you misuse it)

Know of an interesting link, or does your company have a new or updated product or service targeted at Visual Studio developers? Tell me about it at

About the Author

Michael Domingo is a long-time software publishing veteran, having started up and managed several developer publications for the Clipper compiler, Microsoft Access, and Visual Basic. He's also managed IT pubs for 1105 Media, including Microsoft Certified Professional Magazine and Virtualization Review before landing his current gig as Visual Studio Magazine Editor in Chief. Besides his publishing life, he's a professional photographer, whose work can be found by Googling domingophoto.

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