Since the launch we have received a lot of feedback and are actively working on React 0.4. In the meantime, here are the highlights of this week.
Some quick thoughts on React
Andrew Greig made a blog post that gives a high level description of what React is.
Basically, React is not an MVC framework. It is not a replacement for Backbone or Knockout or Angular, instead it is designed to work with existing frameworks and help extend their functionality.
It is designed for building big UIs. The type where you have lots of reusable components that are handling events and presenting and changing some backend data. In a traditional MVC app, React fulfils the role of the View. So you would still need to handle the Model and Controller on your own.
I found the best way to utilise React was to pair it with Backbone, with React replacing the Backbone View, or to write your own Model/Data object and have React communicate with that.
React and Socket.IO Chat Application
Danial Khosravi made a real-time chat application that interacts with the back-end using Socket.IO.
A week ago I was playing with AngularJS and this little chat application which uses socket.io and nodejs for realtime communication. Yesterday I saw a post about ReactJS in EchoJS and started playing with this UI library. After playing a bit with React, I decided to write and chat application using React and I used Bran Ford’s Backend for server side of this little app.
React and Other Frameworks
Pete Hunt wrote an answer on Quora comparing React and Angular directives. At the end, he explains how you can make an Angular directive that is in fact being rendered with React.
To set the record straight: React components are far more powerful than Angular templates; they should be compared with Angular’s directives instead. So I took the first Google hit for “AngularJS directive tutorial” (AngularJS Directives Tutorial - Fundoo Solutions), rewrote it in React and compared them. […]
We’ve designed React from the beginning to work well with other libraries. Angular is no exception. Let’s take the original Angular example and use React to implement the fundoo-rating directive.
Web Components: React & x-tags
Mozilla and Google are actively working on Web Components. Vjeux wrote a proof of concept that shows how to implement them using React.
Using x-tags from Mozilla, we can write custom tags within the DOM. This is a great opportunity to be able to write reusable components without being tied to a particular library. I wrote x-react to have them being rendered in React.
React TodoMVC Example
JSX is not HTML
Many of you pointed out differences between JSX and HTML. In order to clear up some confusion, we have added some documentation that covers the four main differences: