React News and How to Start

I see a lot of hesitancy about React from designers. The tooling seems to be challenging with Javascript. Most of them don’t add they own Webpack.. but if you get them the data, like a large object.. they can do lots with that information. Same in Angular, they don’t want to deal with logic or ng-repeats to integrate their design. That means in order for designers to adapt it easier, the frontend developer has to provide the model and the controller.

When you talk about React you need to understand what a virtual dom is. Once you are comfortable with the event system you are definitely better of with React. And it seems to improve Javascript skills, too. It forces you to write better Javascript down the road. It is a combination of the whole ecosystem that comes with React. So if you put yourself into the situation where you have to push yourself you end up with better code.

You don’t have to learn redux, or webpack, or higher oder components. It’s all part of it but it is not, yet necessary. You can use github starter packages like this one. Once you overcome the learning curve you’ll pick it all up very quickly. I can definitely see why this part seems to be number one on a lot of blogs and online learning services. Facebook does a lot for the community!

All of Javascript landscape is changing at a pace that is upsetting. Some of good Javascript classes are out of date. Javascript fatigue introduces new business opportunities! As an example, if you want to get React to do hot code push and server side rendering you need to get to a code base that is to large for only smaller prototypes. You need to decide if you want to change to React. But I assume it will be around for a long time due to its origin at Facebook. Facebook runs it in production with Instagram and Facebook. So it needs to maintain it.

I am a meteor developer and I appreciate the package community. With React I am starting to get into the analytics of those. React plugins have their own chat room on Slack.

What I wonder is, will there ever be an industry about components? I believe there are possible opportunity for Components in the future. Plugins and themes have made WordPress a professional choice for a lot of businesses. Speaking of which, WordPress will go the React route. They want to completely overhaul the frontend with React. So GraphQL and Relay will become a field of interest, too. Facebook is going to change the way we develop, everywhere.

So what are the things you have to pick up in order to start with React. The nice thing about React is you can just apply your Javascript skills and learn about the lifecycle components. Any React you do needs a build step. So you need at least to understand how to build it. You could start to Google for Webpack. But if you don’t know what it is.. its just so hard to learn. If you only have a few hours during a weekend, you’ll end up working on webpack only. Maybe you are a webpack enthusiast :) But that is highly unlikely. Look at Ember. It uses edge and the community embraces it big time.

Lets see what happens down the road!