Type tagging and branding for TypeScript.

Source code is hosted on GitHub

yarn add @corets/tag

Type tagging, also known as branding, is a common practice in advanced TypeScript setups. The main purpose of this approach is to make certain primitive types more predictable. Using branded types leads to a better traceability of data in the project and encourages developers to be more aware when working with critical, primitive data.

Quick Start

Let's have a look at this example below:

type UUID = string

type User = { id: UUID }

We have created a type alias UUID that is used on the type User. Right now, any string value is a valid UUID:

const user: User = { id: "some-uuid" }

This is very implicit, not traceable, and is not very safe since you pay less attention to what is passed around, since everything is just a string.

What if we could make this more explicit?

import { Tag } from "@corets/tag"

type UUID = Tag<string, "uuid">

type User = {
    id: UUID

// this will not work since string is not assignable to UUID
const user1: User = { id: "some-uuid" }

// exlicitly cast it to UUID
const user2: User = { id: "some-uuid" as UUID }

Now we are using a branded string instead of plain string. You can not assign a plain string to a UUID anymore, if you do so, you have to cast it explicitly. Now you also have full traceability on where UUIDs are used in the project.

Tag<type, alias>

Creates a branded type for any primitive value:

import { Tag } from "@corets/tag"

const Email = Tag<string, "email">

// this will work
const email2: Email = "foo@bar.com" as Email

// this will not work
const email1: Email = "foo@bar.com"

You get full traceability of where branded types are used in your project, since you always have to cast a primitive value to that specific type.

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