London React Meetup: February

In previous months we’ve witnessed growing interest in both React and the London React meetup. As the number of attendees swelled to beyond the reasonable capacity of our office, Facebook stepped in and offered to graciously host the event at their London offices. The timing couldn’t have been better, as this week attendances exceeded 250.

It is clear that with React, Facebook have captured the interest of developers and these growing numbers highlight just how united the community is with its philosophy.

In addition, this January seen the 2015 React.js conference in San Fransisco, with notable announcements being React-Native, Relay and GraphQL amongst others. It is exciting to see Facebook responding to community feedback and evolving React to accommodate its concerns.

What did we learn this month?

An Introduction to Flux

Guy Nesher; a lead developer at Conversocial, introduced us to the Flux architecture in a talk rich with granular details and applied examples. He demonstrated how Flux is a powerful pattern that can be used to simplify data flow and that these benefits are not exclusive to React applications but can be used to great effect in other JS frameworks. Given the announcement of Relay at React.js conf, it will be interesting to see how the Flux pattern changes and how we approach the problem of managing data flow using these new technologies.

A Preview of React-Native

Robbie McCorkell is a user interface developer at Red Badger, and attended React.js conf last month. In doing so, he saw React-Native first hand and walked us through an early release of the IOS implementation with examples in XCode. For the uninitiated, Robbie demonstrated just how productive and enjoyable React-Native development can be in the seemingly torturous world of native app development.

Show and Tell

Two lightning talks on projects currently being worked on by meetup members.

Rui Ramos demoed his project, A simple yet slick playlist manager for parties and powered by React and web sockets. The killer feature was the ability to join a party’s playlist simply by visiting the site via the same network.

Steve Heron showed us react-app-layout; a framework for handling complex, user customisable layouts. By harnessing the power of flex box , Steve showed how we might offer power users, levels of customisation previously only seen in native/desktop applications.

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