In this first post, the application will be built using VanillaJS. Therefore, this article is where the largest amount of code related to the DOM will be developed. However, it is very important to understand how all the parts of the application are related and how it is structured.
Finally, in the last piece, we will transform our code to integrate it with the Angular framework.
There is nothing more valuable than an image to understand what we are going to build. there is a GIF below in which the application we are going to build is illustrated.
What is the MVC architecture? MVC is an architecture with three layers / parts:
- Models — Manage the data of an application. The models will be anemic (they will lack functionalities) since they will be referred to the services.
- Views — A visual representation of the models
- Controllers — Links between services and views
Below, we show the file structure that we will have in our problem domain:
index.html file will act as a canvas on which the entire application will be dynamically built using the
root element. In addition, this file will act as a loader of all the files since they will be linked in the html file itself.
- user.model.js — The attributes (the model) of a user
- user.controller.js — The one in charge of joining the service and the view
- user.service.js — Manage all operations on users
- user.views.js — Responsible for refreshing and changing the display screen
The HTML file is the one shown below:
The first class built in this example is the application model,
user.model.js, which consists of the class attributes, and a private method that is generating random IDs (these ids could come from a database on the server).
The models will have the following fields:
- id — Unique value
- name — The name of the users
- age — The age of the users
- complete — Boolean that lets you know whether we can cross the user off the list
user.model.js is shown below:
The operations performed on users are carried out in the service. The service is what allows the models to be anemic since all the logic load is in them. In this specific case, we will use an array to store all users and build the four methods associated with reading, modifying, creating, and deleting (CRUD) users. You should note that the service makes use of the model, instantiating the objects that are extracted from
LocalStorage to the
User class. This is because
LocalStorage only stores data and not prototypes of stored data. The same happens with the data that travels from the back end to the front end: They do not have their classes instantiated.
The constructor of our class is as follows:
Note that we have defined a class variable called
users that stores all users once they have been transformed from a flat object to a prototyped object of the
The next thing we must define in the service will be each of the operations we want to develop. These operations are shown below using ECMAScript, without using a single line in TypeScript:
It remains to be defined the
commit method that is responsible for storing the operation performed in our data store (in our case
This method invokes a
callback function that has been binded when creating the service, as can be seen in the definition of the
bindUserListChanged method. I can already tell you that this callback is the function that comes from the view and is responsible for refreshing the list of users on the screen.
user.service.js is as follows:
The view is the visual representation of the model. Instead of creating HTML content and injecting it (as is done in many frameworks), we have decided to dynamically create the whole view. The first thing that should be done is to cache all the variables of the view through the DOM methods as shown in the view constructor:
The next most relevant point of the view is the union of the view with the service methods (which will be sent through the controller). For example, the
bindAddUser method receives a driver function as a parameter that is the one that will perform the
addUser operation described in the service. In the
bindXXX methods, the
EventListener of each of the view controls is being defined. Note that from the view we have access to all the data provided by the user from the screen, which is connected through the
The rest of the code of the view goes through handling the DOM of the document. The file
user.view.js is as follows:
The last file of this architecture is the controller. The controller receives the two dependencies it has (service and view) by dependency injection (DI). Those dependencies are stored in the controller in private variables. In addition, the constructor makes the explicit connection between view and services since the controller is the only element that has access to both parties.
user.controller.js is the one shown below:
The last point of our application is the application launcher. In our case, we have called it
app.js. The application is executed through the creation of the different elements:
UserController, as shown in the file
In this first post, we have developed a web application where the project has been structured following the MVC architecture, in which anemic models are used and the responsibility for the logic lies in the services.
It is very important to highlight that the learning objective of this piece is to understand the structuring of the project in different files with different responsibilities and how the view is totally independent of the model/service and the controller.
The GitHub branch of this post is https://github.com/Caballerog/VanillaJS-MVC-Users.