React London Meetup - August 2017

After a brief summer hiatus, the React London monthly meet up made it’s way back to Skills Matter in Moorgate. Voodoo Rays supplied the pizza this time, and it was almost certainly the finest, and most definitely the largest, amount of pizza I have ever seen at a Meetup.

Three very interesting talks followed....

Building a real-time Q&A app using GraphQL by Gerard Sans

Gerard Sans, a Google Developer Expert and someone who runs a number of successful meetups himself, started proceedings with an overview of his work on ‘Hands up’, an app that he created to allow increased audience participation in conferences and events.  The application found good use at GraphQL Europe earlier in the year.

Features such as live voting and asking questions to the panel are available to those using it within an audience, and an administrator can easily moderate and block comments.

Gerard discussed his decision to use GraphCool, which offers a CLI, web console and allows for a GraphQL server from the get-go, as well as Apollo Client and how this compared to Relay Modern.

 

'Migrating from Angular to React: A Tale from the Trenches' by Jack Franklin.

Jack Franklin then spoke about his time at Songkick, and the year long journey that he and his colleagues embarked on as they migrated from Angular 1.x to React.

Having weighed up the pro's and con's of a 'Big Bang' rewrite vs migrating incrementally, Jack and his team chose the latter, and by doing this were able to ship code within a few days of starting.  Concerns on how React and Angular would play together were soon alleviated, with Jack discussing React which allows the user to easily render React components within an Angular application.

Finally, Jack moved onto how his team had to modify their testing strategy in order to have confidence in the transition, and the necessity to be decoupled from the application.

 

'The curious case of Mono repos'  by Johannes Stein.  

Concluding the evening, Johannes Stein, Software Engineer at Gamesys, discussed the practice of creating Mono repos, a practice that can sometimes encourage an emotional reaction but one that appears to be gathering pace on high profile projects such as React and Babel .

After defining what exactly a Mono repo is, Johannes discussed how the way he structured repositories evolved over time. He then continued to talk more broadly about the positives and negatives of this approach., while finally discussed tooling, and in particular Lerna, used to optimise the workflow around managing mono repos.