This article is part 2 of a series on converting your Ember app to TypeScript to foster confidence in your engineering team, based on my talk for EmberConf 2021.

We started with some basics: "What even is a type? What is TypeScript?" Now, we'll look at what TypeScript looks like in an Ember app before circling back to the benefits of TypeScript in the context of developer confidence.

TODO: Links to the other parts of the series

A Metatutorial

Let's convert an app to TypeScript! We'll use the Super Rentals app from the Ember Guides tutorial as our example. Super Rentals is a website for browsing interesting places to stay during your post-quarantine vacation.

Super Rentals is a very modern Ember app, using the latest and greatest Ember Octane features. Admittedly, using TypeScript with pre-Octane Ember was clunky. With Octane and native classes, however, using TypeScript with Ember is pretty straightforward.

If you are not familiar with Ember Octane idioms, I recommend following the Super Rentals tutorial before following this one. Otherwise, you can start with:

$ git clone <> && cd super-rentals

Installing TypeScript

The first step is to run ember install ember-cli-typescript. Installing the ember-cli-typescript package adds everything you need to compile TypeScript.

$ ember install ember-cli-typescript

🚧 Installing packages…

create tsconfig.json
create app/config/environment.d.ts
create types/super-rentals/index.d.ts
create types/ember-data/types/registries/model.d.ts
create types/global.d.ts

This includes:

While Ember itself doesn't have types baked in (spoiler alert: yet), there is a project called Definitely Typed that acts as a repository for types for hundreds of projects—including Ember. You install these types as packages, then import them the same way you would a JavaScript module.


Gradual Typing Hacks