W3cubDocs

/Angular 7

Glossary

Angular has its own vocabulary. Most Angular terms are common English words or computing terms that have a specific meaning within the Angular system.

This glossary lists the most prominent terms and a few less familiar ones with unusual or unexpected definitions.

A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

ahead-of-time (AOT) compilation

The Angular ahead-of-time (AOT) compiler converts Angular HTML and TypeScript code into efficient JavaScript code during the build phase, before the browser downloads and runs that code. This is the best compilation mode for production environments, with decreased load time and increased performance compared to just-in-time (JIT) compilation.

By compiling your application using the ngc command-line tool, you can bootstrap directly to a module factory, so you don't need to include the Angular compiler in your JavaScript bundle.

Angular element

An Angular component packaged as a custom element.

Learn more in Angular Elements Overview.

annotation

A structure that provides metadata for a class. See decorator.

app-shell

App shell is a way to render a portion of your application via a route at build time. This gives users a meaningful first paint of your application that appears quickly because the browser can render static HTML and CSS without the need to initialize JavaScript.

Learn more in The App Shell Model.

You can use the Angular CLI to generate an app shell. This can improve the user experience by quickly launching a static rendered page (a skeleton common to all pages) while the browser downloads the full client version and switches to it automatically after the code loads.

See also Service Worker and PWA.

attribute directives

A category of directive that can listen to and modify the behavior of other HTML elements, attributes, properties, and components. They are usually represented as HTML attributes, hence the name.

Learn more in Attribute Directives.

binding

Generally, the practice of setting a variable or property to a data value. Within Angular, typically refers to data binding, which coordinates DOM object properties with data object properties.

Sometimes refers to a dependency-injection binding between a token and a dependency provider.

bootstrap

A way to initialize and launch an app or system.

In Angular, an app's root NgModule (AppModule) has a bootstrap property that identifies the app's top-level components. During the bootstrap process, Angular creates and inserts these components into the index.html host web page. You can bootstrap multiple apps in the same index.html. Each app contains its own components.

Learn more in Bootstrapping.

case types

Angular uses capitalization conventions to distinguish the names of various types, as described in the naming guidelines section of the Style Guide. Here's a summary of the case types:

  • camelCase : Symbols, properties, methods, pipe names, non-component directive selectors, constants. Standard or lower camel case uses lowercase on the first letter of the item. For example, "selectedHero".

  • UpperCamelCase (or PascalCase): Class names, including classes that define components, interfaces, NgModules, directives, and pipes, Upper camel case uses uppercase on the first letter of the item. For example, "HeroListComponent".

  • dash-case (or "kebab-case"): Descriptive part of file names, component selectors. For example, "app-hero-list".

  • underscore_case (or "snake_case"): Not typically used in Angular. Snake case uses words connected with underscores. For example, "convert_link_mode".

  • UPPER_UNDERSCORE_CASE (or UPPER_SNAKE_CASE, or SCREAMING_SNAKE_CASE): Traditional for constants (acceptable, but prefer camelCase). Upper snake case uses words in all capital letters connected with underscores. For example, "FIX_ME".

class decorator

A decorator that appears immediately before a class definition, which declares the class to be of the given type, and provides metadata suitable to the type.

The following decorators can declare Angular class types:

class field decorator

A decorator statement immediately before a field in a class definition that declares the type of that field. Some examples are @Input and @Output.

collection

In Angular, a set of related schematics collected in an npm package.

command-line interface (CLI)

The Angular CLI is a command-line tool for managing the Angular development cycle. Use it to create the initial filesystem scaffolding for a workspace or project, and to run schematics that add and modify code for initial generic versions of various elements. The CLI supports all stages of the development cycle, including building, testing, bundling, and deployment.

See also Schematics CLI.

component

A class with the @Component() decorator that associates it with a companion template. Together, the component and template define a view. A component is a special type of directive. The @Component() decorator extends the @Directive() decorator with template-oriented features.

An Angular component class is responsible for exposing data and handling most of the view's display and user-interaction logic through data binding.

Read more about components, templates, and views in Architecture Overview.

custom element

A web platform feature, currently supported by most browsers and available in other browsers through polyfills (see Browser support).

The custom element feature extends HTML by allowing you to define a tag whose content is created and controlled by JavaScript code. A custom element (also called a web component) is recognized by a browser when it's added to the CustomElementRegistry.

You can use the API to transform an Angular component so that it can be registered with the browser and used in any HTML that you add directly to the DOM within an Angular app. The custom element tag inserts the component's view, with change-detection and data-binding functionality, into content that would otherwise be displayed without Angular processing.

See also dynamic component loading.

data binding

A process that allows apps to display data values to a user and respond to user actions (such as clicks, touches, and keystrokes).

In data binding, you declare the relationship between an HTML widget and a data source and let the framework handle the details. Data binding is an alternative to manually pushing application data values into HTML, attaching event listeners, pulling changed values from the screen, and updating application data values.

Read about the following forms of binding in Template Syntax:

declarable

A class type that you can add to the declarations list of an NgModule. You can declare components, directives, and pipes.

Don't declare the following:

  • A class that's already declared in another NgModule
  • An array of directives imported from another package. For example, don't declare FORMS_DIRECTIVES from @angular/forms
  • NgModule classes
  • Service classes
  • Non-Angular classes and objects, such as strings, numbers, functions, entity models, configurations, business logic, and helper classes

decorator | decoration

A function that modifies a class or property definition. Decorators (also called annotations) are an experimental (stage 2) JavaScript language feature. TypeScript adds support for decorators.

Angular defines decorators that attach metadata to classes or properties so that it knows what those classes or properties mean and how they should work.

See class decorator, class field decorator.

dependency injection (DI)

A design pattern and mechanism for creating and delivering some parts of an application (dependencies) to other parts of an application that require them.

In Angular, dependencies are typically services, but they also can be values, such as strings or functions. An injector for an app (created automatically during bootstrap) instantiates dependencies when needed, using a configured provider of the service or value.

Learn more in Dependency Injection in Angular.

DI token

A lookup token associated with a dependency provider, for use with the dependency injection system.

directive

A class that can modify the structure of the DOM or modify attributes in the DOM and component data model. A directive class definition is immediately preceded by a @Directive() decorator that supplies metadata.

A directive class is usually associated with an HTML element or attribute, and that element or attribute is often referred to as the directive itself. When Angular finds a directive in an HTML template, it creates the matching directive class instance and gives the instance control over that portion of the browser DOM.

There are three categories of directive:

Angular supplies a number of built-in directives that begin with the ng prefix. You can also create new directives to implement your own functionality. You associate a selector (an HTML tag such as <my-directive>) with a custom directive, thereby extending the template syntax that you can use in your apps.

domain-specific language (DSL)

A special-purpose library or API; see Domain-specific language. Angular extends TypeScript with domain-specific languages for a number of domains relevant to Angular apps, defined in NgModules such as animations, forms, and routing and navigation.

dynamic component loading

A technique for adding a component to the DOM at run time. Requires that you exclude the component from compilation and then connect it to Angular's change-detection and event-handling framework when you add it to the DOM.

See also custom element, which provides an easier path with the same result.

eager loading

NgModules or components that are loaded on launch are called eager-loaded, to distinguish them from those that are loaded at run time (lazy-loaded). See lazy loading.

ECMAScript

The official JavaScript language specification.

Not all browsers support the latest ECMAScript standard, but you can use a transpiler (like TypeScript) to write code using the latest features, which will then be transpiled to code that runs on versions that are supported by browsers.

To learn more, see Browser Support.

element

Angular defines an ElementRef class to wrap render-specific native UI elements. In most cases, this allows you to use Angular templates and data binding to access DOM elements without reference to the native element.

The documentation generally refers to elements (ElementRef instances), as distinct from DOM elements (which can be accessed directly if necessary).

Compare to custom element.

entry point

A JavaScript symbol that makes parts of an npm package available for import by other code. The Angular scoped packages each have an entry point named index.

Within Angular, use NgModules to make public parts available for import by other NgModules.

form control

A instance of FormControl, which is a fundamental building block for Angular forms. Together with FormGroup and FormArray, tracks the value, validation, and status of a form input element.

Read more forms in the Introduction to forms in Angular.

form model

The "source of truth" for the value and validation status of a form input element at a given point in time. When using reactive forms, the form model is created explicitly in the component class. When using template-driven forms, the form model is implicitly created by directives.

Learn more about reactive and template-driven forms in the Introduction to forms in Angular.

form validation

A check that runs when form values change and reports whether the given values are correct and complete, according to the defined constraints. Reactive forms apply validator functions. Template-driven forms use validator directives.

To learn more, see Form Validation.

immutability

The ability to alter the state of a value after its creation. Reactive forms perform immutable changes in that each change to the data model produces a new data model rather than modifying the existing one. Template-driven forms perform mutable changes with NgModel and two-way data binding to modify the existing data model in place.

injectable

An Angular class or other definition that provides a dependency using the dependency injection mechanism. An injectable service class must be marked by the @Injectable() decorator. Other items, such as constant values, can also be injectable.

injector

An object in the Angular dependency-injection system that can find a named dependency in its cache or create a dependency using a configured provider. Injectors are created for NgModules automatically as part of the bootstrap process and are inherited through the component hierarchy.

  • An injector provides a singleton instance of a dependency, and can inject this same instance in multiple components.

  • A hierarchy of injectors at the NgModule and component level can provide different instances of a dependency to their own components and child components.

  • You can configure injectors with different providers that can provide different implementations of the same dependency.

Learn more about the injector hierarchy in Hierarchical Dependency Injectors.

input

When defining a directive, the @Input() decorator on a directive property makes that property available as a target of a property binding. Data values flow into an input property from the data source identified in the template expression to the right of the equal sign.

To learn more, see input and output properties.

interpolation

A form of property data binding in which a template expression between double-curly braces renders as text. That text can be concatenated with neighboring text before it is assigned to an element property or displayed between element tags, as in this example.

My current hero is {{hero.name}}

Read more about interpolation in Template Syntax.

JavaScript

See ECMAScript, TypeScript.

just-in-time (JIT) compilation

The Angular just-in-time (JIT) compiler converts your Angular HTML and TypeScript code into efficient JavaScript code at run time, as part of bootstrapping.

JIT compilation is the default (as opposed to AOT compilation) when you run Angular's ng build and ng serve CLI commands, and is a good choice during development. JIT mode is strongly discouraged for production use because it results in large application payloads that hinder the bootstrap performance.

Compare to ahead-of-time (AOT) compilation.

lazy loading

A process that speeds up application load time by splitting the application into multiple bundles and loading them on demand. For example, dependencies can be lazy loaded as needed—as opposed to eager-loaded modules that are required by the root module and are thus loaded on launch.

The router makes use of lazy loading to load child views only when the parent view is activated. Similarly, you can build custom elements that can be loaded into an Angular app when needed.

library

In Angular, a project that provides functionality that can be included in other Angular apps. A library isn't a complete Angular app and can't run independently.

  • Library developers can use the Angular CLI to generate scaffolding for a new library in an existing workspace, and can publish a library as an npm package.

  • Application developers can use the Angular CLI to add a published library for use with an application in the same workspace.

See also schematic.

lifecycle hook

An interface that allows you to tap into the lifecycle of directives and components as they are created, updated, and destroyed.

Each interface has a single hook method whose name is the interface name prefixed with ng. For example, the OnInit interface has a hook method named ngOnInit.

Angular calls these hook methods in the following order:

  • ngOnChanges: When an input/output binding value changes.
  • ngOnInit: After the first ngOnChanges.
  • ngDoCheck: Developer's custom change detection.
  • ngAfterContentInit: After component content initialized.
  • ngAfterContentChecked: After every check of component content.
  • ngAfterViewInit: After a component's views are initialized.
  • ngAfterViewChecked: After every check of a component's views.
  • ngOnDestroy: Just before the directive is destroyed.

To learn more, see Lifecycle Hooks.

module

In general, a module collects a block of code dedicated to a single purpose. Angular uses standard JavaScript modules and also defines an Angular module, NgModule.

In JavaScript (ECMAScript), each file is a module and all objects defined in the file belong to that module. Objects can exported, making them public, and public objects can be imported for use by other modules.

Angular ships as a collection of JavaScript modules (also called libraries). Each Angular library name begins with the @angular prefix. Install Angular libraries with the npm package manager and import parts of them with JavaScript import declarations.

Compare to NgModule.

NgModule

A class definition preceded by the @NgModule() decorator, which declares and serves as a manifest for a block of code dedicated to an application domain, a workflow, or a closely related set of capabilities.

Like a JavaScript module, an NgModule can export functionality for use by other NgModules and import public functionality from other NgModules. The metadata for an NgModule class collects components, directives, and pipes that the application uses along with the list of imports and exports. See also declarable.

NgModules are typically named after the file in which the exported thing is defined. For example, the Angular DatePipe class belongs to a feature module named date_pipe in the file date_pipe.ts. You import them from an Angular scoped package such as @angular/core.

Every Angular application has a root module. By convention, the class is called AppModule and resides in a file named app.module.ts.

To learn more, see NgModules.

npm package

The npm package manager is used to distribute and load Angular modules and libraries.

Learn more about how Angular uses Npm Packages.

observable

A producer of multiple values, which it pushes to subscribers. Used for asynchronous event handling throughout Angular. You execute an observable by subscribing to it with its subscribe() method, passing callbacks for notifications of new values, errors, or completion.

Observables can deliver single or multiple values of any type to subscribers, either synchronously (as a function delivers a value to its caller) or on a schedule. A subscriber receives notification of new values as they are produced and notification of either normal completion or error completion.

Angular uses a third-party library called Reactive Extensions (RxJS).

To learn more, see Observables.

observer

An object passed to the subscribe() method for an observable. The object defines the callbacks for the subscriber.

output

When defining a directive, the @Output{} decorator on a directive property makes that property available as a target of event binding. Events stream out of this property to the receiver identified in the template expression to the right of the equal sign.

To learn more, see Input and Output Properties.

pipe

A class which is preceded by the @Pipe{} decorator and which defines a function that transforms input values to output values for display in a view. Angular defines various pipes, and you can define new pipes.

To learn more, see Pipes.

polyfill

An npm package that plugs gaps in a browser's JavaScript implementation. See Browser Support for polyfills that support particular functionality for particular platforms.

project

In Angular, a folder within a workspace that contains an Angular app or library. A workspace can contain multiple projects. All apps in a workspace can use libraries in the same workspace.

provider

An object that implements one of the Provider interfaces. A provider object defines how to obtain an injectable dependency associated with a DI token. An injector uses the provider to create a new instance of a dependency for a class that requires it.

Angular registers its own providers with every injector, for services that Angular defines. You can register your own providers for services that your app needs.

See also service, dependency injection.

Learn more in Dependency Injection.

reactive forms

A framework for building Angular forms through code in a component. The alternative is a template-driven form.

When using reactive forms:

  • The "source of truth", the form model, is defined in the component class.
  • Validation is set up through validation functions rather than valdation directives.
  • Each control is explicitly created in the component class by creating a FormControl instance manually or with FormBuilder.
  • The template input elements do not use ngModel.
  • The associated Angular directives are prefixed with form, such as formControl, formGroup, and formControlName.

The alternative is a template-driven form. For an introduction and comparison of both forms approaches, see Introduction to Angular Forms.

router

A tool that configures and implements navigation among states and views within an Angular app.

The Router module is an NgModule that provides the necessary service providers and directives for navigating through application views. A routing component is one that imports the Router module and whose template contains a RouterOutlet element where it can display views produced by the router.

The router defines navigation among views on a single page, as opposed to navigation among pages. It interprets URL-like links to determine which views to create or destroy, and which components to load or unload. It allows you to take advantage of lazy loading in your Angular apps.

To learn more, see Routing and Navigation.

router outlet

A directive that acts as a placeholder in a routing component's template. Angular dynamically renders the template based on the current router state.

routing component

An Angular component with a RouterOutlet directive in its template that displays views based on router navigations.

For more information, see Routing and Navigation.

In schematics, a function that operates on a file tree to create, delete, or modify files in a specific manner, and returns a new Tree object.

schematic

A scaffolding library that defines how to generate or transform a programming project by creating, modifying, refactoring, or moving files and code. A schematic defines rules that operate on a virtual file system called a tree. The Angular CLI uses schematics to generate and modify Angular projects and parts of projects.

  • Angular provides a set of schematics for use with the CLI. See the Angular CLI command reference. The ng add command runs schematics as part of adding a library to your project. The ng generate command runs schematics to create apps, libraries, and Angular code constructs.

  • Library developers can use the Schematics CLI to create schematics that enable the Angular CLI to add and update their published libraries, and to generate artifacts the library defines.

    For more information, see devkit documentation.

Schematics CLI

Schematics come with their own command-line tool. Using Node 6.9 or above, install the Schematics CLI globally:

npm install -g @angular-devkit/schematics-cli

This installs the schematics executable, which you can use to create a new project, add a new schematic to an existing project, or extend an existing schematic.

scoped package

A way to group related npm packages. NgModules are delivered within scoped packages whose names begin with the Angular scope name @angular. For example, @angular/core, @angular/common, @angular/forms, and @angular/router.

Import a scoped package in the same way that you import a normal package.

import { Component } from '@angular/core';

server-side rendering

A technique that generates static application pages on the server, and can generate and serve those pages in response to requests from browsers. It can also pre-generate pages as HTML files that you serve later.

This technique can improve performance on mobile and low-powered devices and improve the user experience by showing a static first page quickly while the client-side app is loading. The static version can also make your app more visible to web crawlers.

You can easily prepare an app for server-side rendering by using the CLI to run the Angular Universal tool, using the @nguniversal/express-engine schematic.

service

In Angular, a class with the @Injectable() decorator that encapsulates non-UI logic and code that can be reused across an application. Angular distinguishes components from services to increase modularity and reusability.

The @Injectable() metadata allows the service class to be used with the dependency injection mechanism. The injectable class is instantiated by a provider. Injectors maintain lists of providers and use them to provide service instances when they are required by components or other services.

To learn more, see Introduction to Services and Dependency Injection.

structural directives

A category of directive that is responsible for shaping HTML layout by modifying the DOM&mdashthat is, adding, removing, or manipulating elements and their children.

To learn more, see Structural Directives.

subscriber

A function that defines how to obtain or generate values or messages to be published. This function is executed when a consumer calls the subscribe() method of an observable.

The act of subscribing to an observable triggers its execution, associates callbacks with it, and creates a Subscription object that lets you unsubscribe.

The subscribe() method takes a JavaScript object (called an observer) with up to three callbacks, one for each type of notification that an observable can deliver:

  • The next notification sends a value such as a number, a string, or an object.
  • The error notification sends a JavaScript Error or exception.
  • The complete notification doesn't send a value, but the handler is called when the call completes. Scheduled values can continue to be returned after the call completes.

template

Code associated with a component that defines how to render the component's view.

A template combines straight HTML with Angular data-binding syntax, directives, and template expressions (logical constructs). The Angular elements insert or calculate values that modify the HTML elements before the page is displayed.

A template is associated with a component class through the @Component() decorator. The HTML can be provided inline, as the value of the template property, or in a separate HTML file linked through the templateUrl property.

Additional templates, represented by TemplateRef objects, can define alternative or embedded views, which can be referenced from multiple components.

template-driven forms

A format for building Angular forms using HTML forms and input elements in the view. The alternative format uses the reactive forms framework.

When using template-driven forms:

  • The "source of truth" is the template. The validation is defined using attributes on the individual input elements.
  • Two-way binding with ngModel keeps the component model synchronized with the user's entry into the input elements.
  • Behind the scenes, Angular creates a new control for each input element, provided you have set up a name attribute and two-way binding for each input.
  • The associated Angular directives are prefixed with ng such as ngForm, ngModel, and ngModelGroup.

The alternative is a reactive form. For an introduction and comparison of both forms approaches, see Introduction to Angular Forms.

template expression

A TypeScript-like syntax that Angular evaluates within a data binding.

Read about how to write template expressions in Template expressions.

token

An opaque identifier used for efficient table lookup. In Angular, a DI token is used to find providers of dependencies in the dependency injection system.

transpile

The translation process that transforms one version of JavaScript to another version; for example, down-leveling ES2015 to the older ES5 version.

tree

In schematics, a virtual file system represented by the Tree class. Schematic rules take a tree object as input, operate on them, and return a new tree object.

TypeScript

A programming language based on JavaScript that is notable for its optional typing system. TypeScript provides compile-time type checking and strong tooling support (such as code completion, refactoring, inline documentation, and intelligent search). Many code editors and IDEs support TypeScript either natively or with plug-ins.

TypeScript is the preferred language for Angular development. Read more about TypeScript at typescriptlang.org.

Universal

A tool for implementing server-side rendering of an Angular application. When integrated with an app, Universal generates and serves static pages on the server in response to requests from browsers. The initial static page serves as a fast-loading placeholder while the full application is being prepared for normal execution in the browser.

To learn more, see Angular Universal: server-side rendering.

view

The smallest grouping of display elements that can be created and destroyed together. Angular renders a view under the control of one or more directives, especially component directives and their companion templates.

A view is specifically represented by a ViewRef instance associated with the component. A view that belongs to a component is called a host view. Views are typically collected into view hierarchies.

Properties of elements in a view can change dynamically, in response to user actions; the structure (number and order) of elements in a view can't. You can change the structure of elements by inserting, moving, or removing nested views within their view containers.

View hierarchies can be loaded and unloaded dynamically as the user navigates through the application, typically under the control of a router.

view hierarchy

A tree of related views that can be acted on as a unit. The root view is a component's host view. A host view can be the root of a tree of embedded views, collected in a view container (ViewContainerRef) attached to an anchor element in the hosting component. The view hierarchy is a key part of Angular change detection.

The view hierarchy doesn't imply a component hierarchy. Views that are embedded in the context of a particular hierarchy can be host views of other components. Those components can be in the same NgModule as the hosting component, or belong to other NgModules.

web component

See custom element.

workspace

In Angular, a folder that contains projects (that is, apps and libraries). The CLI ng new command creates a workspace to contain projects. Commands that create or operate on apps and libraries (such as add and generate) must be executed from within a workspace folder.

zone

An execution context for a set of asynchronous tasks. Useful for debugging, profiling, and testing apps that include asynchronous operations such as event processing, promises, and calls to remote servers.

An Angular app runs in a zone where it can respond to asynchronous events by checking for data changes and updating the information it displays by resolving data bindings.

A zone client can take action before and after an async operation completes.

Learn more about zones in this Brian Ford video.

© 2010–2019 Google, Inc.
Licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution License 4.0.
https://v7.angular.io/guide/glossary