I think we both agree on most points. Though I personally wouldn’t call NodeJS a “dependency” so much as a “platform” that you write an entire codebase for. There aren’t many developers capable of building platforms that complex, sure.
For other dependencies, such as js-cookie, I agree you don’t need to have comprehensive knowledge about what it does. But to your last point about runtime, I’d still argue you should always have a general idea of what it’s doing, and the general methods it’s using to accomplish its task. I.e., my personal rule is that for every dependency I rely on, I could write (a much worse version of) it myself, assuming I had time. With certain exceptions like React, etc.
So thanks for clarifying! I misread parts of your article as anti-dependency. I agree that careless editions of dependencies are bad. And beyond that if you’re aware of every package’s effect on your codebase, the final number is moot.