Interview: Brad Green at ng-conf 2016

Brad Green is working at Google for more than 9 years now. Engineering Director, he’s in charge of the Angular 2 team and Wassim Chegham, Google Developer Expert in Angular from SFEIR,  didn’t miss the opportunity to have a little chat with him during the ng-conf2016!


WCH: Hi Brad, can you introduce yourself?
Brad Green : Hey I’m Brad Green, I am an engineer director at Google and I am managing the Angular team.

WCH: Can you give us a quick introduction to Angular 2?
Brad Green : Angular 2 is a platform for building applications for the Web, mobile Web and also native versions on mobile and desktop…

WCH: So it is more than a platform?
Brad Green : Yeah more than a platform, we actually spent a bunch of time working on the language, on the tooling, on all of the ecosystem pieces. We prepared way more tools than we did for Angular 1.

WCH: What is your favorite feature of Angular 2?
Brad Green : I think the new templating system is really nice. You can do so much just with a couple of basic features. It’s also a lot easier to debug because it is statically analyzable now and gives much better error messaging.

WCH: Cool! My favorite feature is the offline compiler.
Brad Green : Well, I think that’s the hot new thing, that will make it small and faster, for sure! That gives us a lot of flexibility too. So, it’s pretty exciting.

WCH: Can you tell us a bit more about some of the challenges you faced while desiBrad Greengning Angular 2?
Brad Green : A couple of them revolved around staying ergonomic and fast, because sometimes these things work against each other. And, you know, we had a very dynamic system in Angular 1, where you could drop, you could change the template on the fly, you can do a lot of things! We wanted to go towards a more static system, so it could be optimized for the virtual machines. But we wanted to do it in a way where we could still retain the nice ergonomics of the interfaces in Angular 2. I think we are there, I think it’s very nice. You guys will have to tell us whether we’ve hit it or not [laughs].

WCH: About TypeScript: do you recommend using it or not? If yes, why?
Brad Green : Well, I think you should. I think that if you are an individual developer, you just get a lot more help from the IDE in terms of “what is the source of this”, navigating through the code, getting documentation, autocompletion, all those nice things. If you are managing an organization, you should like it a lot better too, because it’s a way for developers to specify their intention to each other, and so it’s a good and nice way of communicating. It also makes the code more maintainable.

WCH: If I remember well, you told us that you found a lot of bugs when you switched to TypeScript!
Brad Green : We did. Yeah that’s true. We were kind of surprised because we have a dedicated unit tests and end-to-end tests, and we tested against all these applications in Google and outside, and yet still we found things that are like “Oh! Yeah! Probably those are bugs just sitting in there…”

WCH: One last question, yesterday was “May the 4th be with you”. Who is your favorite character in Star Wars?
Brad Green : Hmm Star Wars! You know as a kid I loved Darth Vador, he was that crazy villain who… I don’t know, he haunted my dreams [laughs]…

WCH: So you like villains?
Brad Green : You gotta love villains. Especially the ones that turn around at the end, right? [laughs]

WCH: Thank you for your time, Brad! Enjoy the rest of the ngconf.
Brad Green : Thank you Wassim.

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