Electron is getting ready for a great 2020

Open source framework Electron becomes OpenJS Foundation incubator

Chris Stewart
© Shutterstock / Yurchanka Siarhei

Electron is a framework used to build desktop apps with JavaScript, HTML, and CSS, and is based on Node.js and Chromium. You might know it from such big names as Discord, Slack, Skype, Trello and Visual Studio Code, to namedrop just a few. Electron has now started the process to join the OpenJS Foundation, the first step of which is to become an incubator project.

Yesterday at their flagship event in Montreal, the OpenJS Foundation announced that Electron is joining them as an incubator project. Robin Ginn, Executive Director of the OpenJS Foundation said of the announcement:

“We’re heading into 2020 excited and honored by the trust the Electron project leaders have shown through this significant contribution to the new OpenJS Foundation. Electron is a powerful development tool used by some of the most well-known companies and applications. On behalf of the community, I look forward to working with Electron and seeing the amazing contributions they will make.”

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Emphasizing his enthusiasm for the collaboration, OpenJS Foundation Board Chair and Vice President of Open Technology and Developer Advocacy at IBM Todd Moore said “On behalf of the OpenJS Foundation Board of Directors, it’s my pleasure to welcome Electron as the newest incubating project to the Foundation. Bringing Electron into the Foundation is a great way to cap 2019, and continue to build our momentum into next year.”

“We’re excited about Electron’s move to the OpenJS Foundation and we see this as the next step in our evolution as an open source project,” said Jacob Groundwater, Manager at ElectronJS and Principal Engineering Manager at Microsoft. “With the Foundation, we’ll continue on our mission to play a prominent role in the adoption of web technologies by desktop applications and provide a path for JavaScript to be a sustainable platform for desktop applications. This will enable the adoption and development of JavaScript in an environment that has traditionally been served by proprietary or platform-specific technologies.”

Getting Electron on board

Of course, it’s not as simple as just joining a foundation like OpenJS; there’s a process, hence its incubating status. There is an onboarding checklist that Electron will now have to ensure it complies with, including adopting the OpenJS Foundation Code of Conduct, and creating and transferring lots of documentation. Once that is complete it will make the transition to one of Impact, Growth or At-Large status. It has not yet been announced which project level Electron is aiming for.

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Electron’s Felix Rieseberg also published a blog post in which he talks about what this means for contributors to the open source project. He writes:

Electron joining the OpenJS Foundation does not change how Electron is made, released, or used — and does not directly affect developers building applications with Electron. Even though Electron was originally created at GitHub in 2013, it is currently maintained by a number of organizations and individuals. In 2019, Electron codified its governance structure and invested heavily into formalizing how decisions affecting the entire project are made. We believe that having multiple organizations and developers investing in and collaborating on Electron makes the project stronger.

Lifting Electron up from being owned by a single corporate entity and moving it into a neutral foundation focused on supporting the web and JavaScript ecosystem is a natural next step as we mature as an open-source project.

The OpenJS Foundation provides vendor-neutral support for sustained growth within the open source JavaScript community. You can find out more about them and what they do over at

Read the full announcement here.


Chris Stewart
Chris Stewart is an Online Editor for He studied French at Somerville College, Oxford before moving to Germany in 2011. He speaks too many languages, writes a blog, and dabbles in card tricks.

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