Tuesday, September 22, 2015

ReactJS JSX gives us HTML in JavaScript

What I consider the main difference between ReactJS and its JSX syntax when compared to the other frameworks like AngularJS, EmberJS, and BackboneJS is that JSX is HTML in JavaScript. The others have JavaScript in the HTML.

Here's a simple example:




React's JSX:

myCollection.map( (item) => {

  return render (

    <div>{item}</div> 

  );

});


AngularJS:

<div ng-repeat="item in myCollection">

  <div>{{item}}</div>

</div>

One of the things that we continuously struggle with is the ability to program markup. To do this we've been adding language to the markup.

JSX stands that paradigm on its head and adds the markup to the language.

As a developer I enjoy writing code more than writing markup. JSX means that I don't have to jump-out-of the markup to make things happen to it. The markup is encapsulated inside the logic that controls the flow of the application.

With AngularJS I'm consciously wiring language and markup together.

AngularJS appeals to the designer in me while JSX appeals to the developer in me.

I'm not against AngularJS or the other frameworks. I enjoy writing code and solving hard problems. I also hated the sight of JSX when I first saw it and before I wrote my first project in it. It didn't seem right to pollute JavaScript with markup.

For me the AHA moment was the productivity I felt that React gave me by keeping me in my area of expertise: JavaScript. I'm good at HTML and CSS. I'm an expert at JavaScript. More productivity happens in your area of expertise.

Long live ReactJS.
Long live AngularJS.



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