Intro to TypeScript 1.5 beta – Classes Part 1

TypeScript

This is the sixth post in a series on getting to know TypeScript. If you missed the few posts feel free to go back and read them.

  1. Intro to Typescript 1.5 beta – Types
  2. Intro to TypeScript 1.5 beta – Interfaces
  3. Intro to TypeScript 1.5 beta – Functions Part 1
  4. Intro to TypeScript 1.5 beta – Functions Part 2
  5. Intro to TypeScript 1.5 beta – Functions Part 3

If your new to JavaScript and have a background in C# or Java JavaScript’s prototyped based inheritance can take some getting used to. To ease this pain TypeScript (and ECMAScript 6) uses a revolutionary concept to institute the ability to reuse components called Classes. Ok maybe it’s not revolutionary but it’s new(ish) in the world of JavaScript.

Enter the Classes

Classes can consist of properties, methods, and the constructor.

A Simple Class
class Simple {  
    // property
    myNumber: number;
    // constructor
    constructor(startNumber: number) {
        this.myNumber = startNumber;
    }
    // method
    getMyNumber() {
        return this.myNumber;
    }
}

You may have noticed the use of the work this. when accessing the property myNumber. That is to specify you are referencing a class instance member.

The constructor is called when you new up the class.

new Class
// New up Simple Class
var simple = new Simple(7);  

This example creates a new object that is shaped like our class and then calls the constructor. In this case it passes in the number 7 to be stored in our new objects myNumber member.

Lets Keep This Private

By default properties and methods are public but you can use the keyword private to restrict access to a either. If you feel so inclined you can use the public keyword to visually remind yourself that things are public but it’s not necessary.

// A Simple Class with private members
class SimplePrivate {  
    // private property
    private myNumber: number;
    // constructor
    constructor(startNumber: number) {
        this.myNumber = startNumber;
    }
    // method
    public getMyNumber() {
        return this.myNumber;
    }
}

Sometimes I Want Values to Hang Around Awhile (Read:Forever)

TypeScript also allows the use of static member properties. These are declared with the static keyword and are accessed by using the class name instead of this.

// A Simple Class with a Static Property
class SimpleStatic {  
    // static property
    static multiplier: number = 10;
    // property
    myNumber: number;
    // constructor
    constructor(startNumber: number) {
        this.myNumber = startNumber;
    }
    // method
    multiplyMyNumberByTen() {
        return this.myNumber * SimpleStatic.multiplier;
    }
}

And that should be enough to start getting in trouble with for now. Check back next time as we cover Class Inheritance and Accessors.

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