Visual Studio Taco spices up Cordova error-reporting

Microsoft has updated Visual Studio Taco (Tools for Apache Cordova), keying in on error-reporting and project-template improvements.

Update 7 of the toolset works with the open source Cordova framework for building mobile apps via HTML, JavaScript, and CSS. Applications can be built for Android, iOS, and Windows with wrappers for each mobile platform.

"In update 7 we have attempted to address [the issue of error reporting]," said Michael Braude, development manager of Apache Tools for Apache Cordova at Microsoft. In version 6.0.0, Cordova offers an API for emitting error messages; developers must install Update 7 and target version 6.0.0 or higher to take advantage of this capability. "We do not expect the error messages to be perfect," Braude said, "but we hope that they are more useful than they've been in the past."

Project templates have been updated with a modern look, including changes to some image assets and adding new icons. Update 7 also features Ionic framework templates for Blank, Tabs, and SideMenu. The templates assist with building multidevice hybrid apps. A Visual Studio extension provides Ionic with IntelliSense capabilities, which helps developers learn about code and track parameters.

Update 7 includes multiple bug fixes. Microsoft also addressed problem in which adding NPM packages for a project with a name that did not match NPM's naming requirements caused the package restore capability to fail.

The Taco upgrade closely follows Microsoft's accommodations for Cordova in the Visual Studio Code editor and is accessible as part of Visual Studio or via GitHub as a stand-alone download.

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