6 minutes reading time (1167 words)

Where I'm at with front end development right now..

On Angular (nG) 1

I like Angular 1 because it asked us developers what we wanted and it gave us most everything we need OOTB. It works well. Granted ng1 doesn't have the shadow dom of REACT but this is where Angular 2 will come in and Type Script as a way to solve js standardisation.

On React

So I am building my own first react app. A small tour selector gizmo that has a filter function and goes to a detail page. I am using flux as the pattern with Flux.Dispatch and MicroEvent (this I don't think is great why not use a single lib for it ie a better Dispatch class.) to keep things tiny…I don't even have a lib to make any asncyhronous calls yet (next job making asynchronous calls) I will see how far I can get natively with javascript and es6 Promise before adding a dependency. Yes I am getting up to speed with some of the newer es6 stuff.
I really get the component nature and I like that I build my own ship of dependencies…I love JSX now but REACT I feel it misses a few key things to get started faster but of course that should not make the tech stack choice decision criteria. Routing etc can be easy to roll your own…

On Angular 2

(excuse my ignorance..) Promises to be all the best performance of React but with the awesome OOTB we liked from ng1? – I don't care if I need to learn angular expressions they are not hard -I cant even remember js OTTOMH and always need the net as an aide memoir..map for example is new es6 anyway…arrow notation etc..

Javascript standards and ECMA Script

(Es6 = es2015) being able to write these new language features and compile to es5 (what todays browsers are compatible with) means that it will just work in decent browsers…so that means babel or typescript and this is where we see why we don't write in javascript anymore..we are transpiling it ! Yes not enough frikin keywords already !
Beyond I think we need to start to look at language agnostic ability to code so anyone can build something…speak and code for example you would simply speak 'give me a user login form – add a password reminder link' etc..

On Testing TDD 

Sounding like something you might pick up in the 80's (TDD) ..I don't care about testing functions as much as I care about real user testing..(sorry I find it inefficient but I am happy to write unit tests I would rather be learning stuff of greater importance). Unit tests don't catch the bigger bugs real testing does on the final platform. OK they help you limit regressions if you don't code well to start with.

On Architecture

I get MVC mostly but get confused with complexity of many peoples implementations online the fix is stop reading stuff online and stick to what I know. Mostly I get that I want my functions to do just one thing and my views to just be dumb views as much as possible…mostly I get annoyed when frameworks don't allow good communication between controllers or I need to pass stuff around…trying to debug a chain of events is horrible. So far React doesn't look too bad. Don't forget I have been round and round the same arguments for 15+ years…

On Builds

I love my builds and get stressed when for example a scss change doesn't immediately spark a build behind the scenes and a browser refresh this is the development motorway and is worth getting right. Use gulp as a pref. It does all I need to do and webpack looks like a popular thing to explore but I haven't seen anyone who is capable of showing me yet how its better than gulp. Grunt seems good and capable but needs more lines of code to achieve the same.

My History of Coding

I have been around a long time (since 98) to recognise various patterns in my industry. Frameworks libs etc..some skills need to be rated higher like js and knowing how to solve a business problem in code…it's a step beyond the frameworks and even knowing js isn't enough. Yet recruiters are employing on the keywords like angular…it's not their fault. Younger developers also don't realise that in the real world things work differently TDD testing etc… no matter how talented with the code they may (showing great promise) be they need to appreciate the business side and human side more IMO. One bug bear is the developers need to complicate things to show other developers he/she is better ! Coders think they are the smartest so I ask them if they can solve Africa or peace the Middle East. Please get me – I will find you more welcoming and smarter if you can explain what are quite simple concepts generally than if you minimise and obfuscate your code to be clever. Pseudo code it out if need be…stop looking for validation. You are already clever you know it be satisfied with that.

The rest is my code history and why I am here and somewhat if I may brag of my own unique position (we all have that !).

Let's start with flash and as2 javascript syntax but very procedural but introduced a very creative way to solve visual problems in code.
This moved onto as3 which introduced types interfaces and was immediately very different. OO style javascript but compiled and run in the flash player.
During this time I got exposure to php and CMS in the background so I have this old school web1 experience. As3 did bring along pure MVC frameworks and thus my adventure of frameworks started. I have seen many come and go. Also libs.
The DOM was new however and brought its own learning curve. Now it's a shadow DOM..

From this I moved into javascript development when flash was taken away from mobile phones which was quite a shame really – their video formats and playback was amazing…I decided not to live with a dead politically speaking technology. Browser issues and versions brought various polyfills enabling functionality in older browsers but it was very clunky and felt inefficient. ECMA Script was a challenging standard js didn't always follow..Again now es6 and the next es7 but JQuery was a way in which web 1 looked web 2 and we loved that library as it saved time…but oh boy there was the wild west of architecture..I seen javascript in html inside Java database fields in the CMS being rendered to pages…!!! Young developers beware.

Fast forward to today

Typescript is very close to as3 introducing interfaces and strongly typed variables. Javascript isn't strongly typed so we have typescript compiler warning us about these types in compilation. JSX or plain raw react using es6 is also very good in that both allow us to use the new tools like map and run them through babel or typescript and get es5 valid js.

And this is where I am at today…the joys of react and asynchronous loading await me this afternoon..

Loading data asynchronously and using Flux Despatc...
React and Flux Sending State to Children Component...
 

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Tuesday, 20 February 2024

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