Originally known as Atom Shell, Electron went into development two years ago. The original goal of the project was to build a framework for constructing Atom, an open-source, hackable text editor GitHub created. Electron is the evolution of the framework.
(Related: GitHub Enterprise hits 2.6)
With the release of Electron 1.0, the platform’s APIs get a major overhaul and stability improvements. To help developers take advantage of these APIs, Electron 1.0 includes (for the first time) a demo application designed to take users on a tour of the APIs’ capabilities. These APIs can be used to create and manage windows, use system dialogs, and communicate between processes.
Electron also comes with a Chrome Developer Tools extension designed to help inspect, debug and troubleshoot Electron applications. Devtron is an open-source Chrome extension, and it can inspect events, visualize app dependencies, and monitor interprocess communications. Devtron can also run lint tests.
Testing Electron applications has also been the purview of the GitHub team behind the project. To this end, Spectron, the integration testing framework for Electron applications, has also been updated with full support for Electron 1.0. Spectron also is based on ChromeDriver and WebdriverIO, and thus it has full access to run tests within Chrome.
Electron 1.0 is free and open source, and is available online at electron.atom.io.