What is React.js

What is React JS

What Is React.js?

If you’re getting into web development or other forms of coding, you’ve likely come across React JS. But what exactly is React? How do you use it, and why is it so important?

React JS isn’t just another coding language like Python or CSS. It’s a different beast entirely.

In this article, we’ll break down React JS and show you why it’s a crucial addition to your web development toolkit. We’ll cover:

  • What Is React JS?
  • What Is React Used For?
  • The Main React Features
  • The Main React Components
  • Why Use React
  • The Best Ways to Learn React JS

Let’s get started!

What Is React Javascript?

To grasp React JS, you first need to understand a bit about JavaScript. That’s the ‘JS’ in React JS!

We have a detailed article on JavaScript, but here’s a quick overview: JavaScript is a programming language that enables interactions between the website you create and the computer of the person visiting it. It can modify every part of a website, from its visual aspects to how it communicates with users.

Because many of JavaScript’s crucial functions are repetitive, developers created libraries to store these functions, so they don’t have to rewrite the same code repeatedly. React JS is one of these libraries, and it’s exceptionally powerful!

What Is React Used For?

React JS is a JavaScript library designed for building user interfaces (UIs) for single-page applications. It handles the view layer for web and mobile applications.

Developed by Jordan Walke, a Facebook engineer, React is now one of the most widely used libraries due to its open-source nature. Over 1,000 developers have contributed to it. It’s the go-to library for industry giants like Uber, Facebook, Instagram, Amazon, Twitter, and Netflix, among many others.

The Main React Features

React’s popularity stems from several key features that make it indispensable for web developers:

JSX (JavaScript Syntax Extension)

JSX is a syntax extension that works with JavaScript. It allows developers to write descriptions that resemble HTML templates. JSX looks like markup but functions with the full power of JavaScript.

VDOM (Virtual Document Object Model)

The Virtual DOM revolutionized interface changes. Before VDOM, any change required the entire interface code to be rewritten, slowing down load speeds and creating sluggish interfaces. VDOM creates a virtual representation of the actual UI. When changes occur, the VDOM compares the new UI to the existing one and updates the DOM only where necessary. This makes applications faster and more efficient.

The Main React Components

React components are another major draw. React JS is built on simple component design, much like Lego bricks. These components can be combined to build anything from simple to complex structures.

React components can be written as classes or functions:

React Class Components

Class components form the foundation of most modern React apps. These are simple classes comprising functions that add utility to the application.

React Functional Components

Functional components are JavaScript functions used in React. You can create your own functional components by writing a standard JavaScript function.

Why Use React?

Now that you know what React JS is, should you learn it? Here are some compelling reasons:

  • Easy to Learn: If you have a good grasp of JavaScript, you can learn React in a few months, transforming how you design and create web content.
  • Flexible: React allows you to create functions tailored to your needs, offering immense flexibility and customization.
  • Performance: With features like VDOM, React optimizes performance without compromising memory.
  • Data Binding: React uses unidirectional data flow, meaning data moves in one direction—from parent to child components—ensuring stability.
  • Reusable Components: Components created in React can be reused, saving time and effort.
  • Easy to Test: React makes code easy to test. Its one-way data flow ensures that code remains stable and unaltered, reducing the need for repeated testing.

The Best Ways to Learn React JS

If you’re interested in learning React development, Codeworks offers comprehensive courses to get you up to speed quickly and confidently.

Our software bootcamps and other courses ensure you graduate with a solid understanding of React JS and other essential industry tools. You’ll learn React alongside Javascript, and other leading languages.

React JS FAQ

Should I Learn React JS?

Absolutely! Learning React JS enhances your employability and can make you a better web developer. Its flexible, stable development system is increasingly used across the web. Even if you’re not directly using React, understanding its principles and patterns is invaluable.

What Are Props in React?

Props, short for properties, are a key concept in React. They allow components to communicate with each other by passing data from parent to child components. This unidirectional flow of information ensures stability and readability.

What Are Hooks in React?

React Hooks let you use state and other lifecycle methods in functional components, simplifying design by enabling function reuse. Hooks allow you to leverage React features without writing class components.

What Is Render in React JS?

Rendering is the process of React gathering information about the UI based on the props and state used. React starts at the root of the component tree and checks for updates that need to be made to the DOM. These updates are flagged and saved, creating a new component tree on the VDOM. The “Render Phase” is followed by the “Commit Phase,” where all changes are applied in sequence.

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