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Angular 1.0 Turns Five Years Old

A brief history lesson

Chris Brandrick
Jun 16, 2017 · 4 min read

It’s been five years since Angular hit its initial 1.0 release:

However, despite reaching 1.0 in 2012 the web application framework was originally conceived back in 2009.

In a post on his personal blog co-author Miško Hevery proclaimed “Hello World, <angular/> is here”, introducing the developer community to Angular’s offer. At the time Angular was presented as an enterprise product.

Miško explained that Angular was very much an in-beta project looking for a “few brave souls” to start testing and offering feedback.

Here’s how Angular was initially pitched:

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“We would like to introduce to you a new way of building web applications! All you need is basic working of HTML & CSS and you can declaratively build a web-application in minutes. “

What began as something of a side-project turned enterprise venture soon changed focus, with the framework eventually being open-sourced, and maintained by Google, the following year.

AngularJS first appeared on GitHub with version 0.9.0 in October of 2010.

Version 1.0 launched on June 14th, 2012.

Miško detailed that the goal of AngularJS was “to eliminate the guesswork in creating web app structure and take the pain and the boilerplate out of web client apps”.

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So, is it Angular or AngularJS?

The easy answer is this: Anything that’s version 1.x tends to be known as AngularJS, and everything after version 2 and above is known simply as Angular.

AngularJS is still maintained and now lives at angularjs.org.

Straight up Angular (at angular.io) is where the focus now lies, with one single framework aiming to serve both mobile and desktop needs. Angular is a complete rewrite of what came before it, and represents a clean cut away from AngularJS 1.x.

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Angular 2.0

Announced in September of 2014, Angular 2.0 caused something of an upset as it came to light that there would be no migration path from 1.x to 2.x. That, combined with a range of syntax changes made for a rocky debut. By this point in time AngularJS had become a highly popular JS framework, so any major changes were bound to cause some dismay.

However, it wasn’t all bad, as pointed out here by Jesus Rodriguez — Angular 2.0 brought with it new features and welcome simplification.

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Questions relating to Angular on Stack Overflow over the years

The final release version of Angular 2 finally arrived in September of 2016.

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Version 4.0

Yup, no version three. Google decided to skip a 3.0 release and went straight to version 4. Google’s Igor Minar explained that the jump from 2 to 4 was to avoid any confusion with Angular’s then router version (which stood at 3.3.0).

Unlike the jump from 1.x to 2.x this time the team promised backwards compatibility between versions 2 and 4. Minar noted that they did not want to make “any breaking changes that will break the ecosystem”.

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Today, Angular is one of the most starred projects on GitHub, with both AngularJS and Angular having over 75,000 combined stars.

Angular has had something of an interesting journey so far. Let’s see where the next five years takes us! 😄

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Version 1.0 is now five!

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