« All posts

04.05.2022 - TypeScript / Some random notes about Classes

Some notes about some not-so-well-known things about TypeScript Classes.

Parameter properties

In TypeScript, you can define a class’s properties in two ways: Define it as a class property in the normal way, or define it as a constructor’s parameter, a.k.a Parameter Properties:

class Foo {
    private bar: Bar;
    public beep: Boop;
 
    constructor() {}
}
 
// is equivalent to
 
class Foo {
    constructor(
        private bar: Bar,
        public beep: Boop
    ) {}
}

You probably use this a lot if you’ve been writing Angular code:

@Component({ ... })
class SomeComponent {
    constructor(
        private apiService: ApiService,
        ...
    ) {}
}

Static blocks in class

You can define a static block in a class, it is useful when you need to do some initialization for static members of the class.

For example, you want to init some static values for the class, you cannot init it in a constructor, because it’s just wrong:

class Foo {
    static bar = 0;
    constructor() {
        Foo.bar = calculateSomethingComplex();
    }
}
 
console.log(Foo.bar); // output = 0

The right way to do this is, to use a static block:

class Foo {
    static bar = 0;
    static {
        Foo.bar = calculateSomethingComplex(); // 50
    }
}
 
console.log(Foo.bar); // output = 50

Classes are just shapes

For most of the cases, classes in TypeScript are compared structurally, this means, as long as the classes have the same shape, you can use them interchangeably:

class Foo {
    x: number;
    y: string;
}
 
class Bar {
    x: number;
    y: string;
    z: boolean;
}
 
let x: Foo = new Bar(); // OK
let y: Bar = new Foo(); // Fail

In the above example, the Bar class has all the members of Foo, so it can be assigned to a variable of type Foo, but not the other way around because the Foo class doesn’t have the z: boolean property.

This means, you can also assign an empty class to anything, but it does not mean you should do it.

Read more