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Main reasons to use React and Redux (with example)

React and Redux are popular terms in software development. While React is a JavaScript library used to build user interfaces (UIs), the Redux is a predictable state container for JavaScript applications.

It’s 2019, a time with numerous software development tools and libraries available out there. It might not make sense to jump on random JavaScript libraries every now and then without making sure which one is right for you.

React was developed by Facebook for its own use, but the company open-sourced it to revolutionize the world of development. One of the main reasons the developers love React is that it needs minimal knowledge of HTML and JS.

On the other hand, the Redux helps developers to develop apps that not only work consistently but also run in multiple environments, including client, server and native. This is mostly used with React but can also be used with other JS libraries as well.

If you are a front-end developer looking to make the most out of your projects while improving your skills, then React and Redux are the ways to go for.

Why to use Redux?

It might be somewhat unclear to some developers to use both React and Redux for an application. But there are several reasons to do so.

React is a great option and can assist developers while writing an entire application. But, for complex applications, things might become difficult for them. They might need to go back and forth to check the way an app is behaving. It is important to predict how the app will work and to find any error if things go wrong.

That’s where the role of Redux come in. With the help of this state management library, developers can reduce most of their issues that come up with complex projects.

Benefits of Redux:

Predictable states

Whether building a website or an app, the developers who use Redux can always predict the states. These states will remain absolute and will never change. This thing allows developers to easily apply difficult tasks like redo and undo, so that they can move back and forth to previous states.

Here is an example showing how Redux can be helpful in maintaining states in a React application.

In an app, some of the elements may require access to a single state for showing it in multiple ways. For instance, a classic master/detail view contains a set of items that display summary values for all the items. This set will also have details for the selected item.

But the issue with this master/detail view is that developers aren’t sure where their data should live. Since there are two elements that share the same data, it becomes complex for them when they want to synchronize the data. By default, the source-of-truth of the data resides in a single place.

When two elements require access to the same data, the developers need to lift the states up. This means that they would have to put the data in the nearest ancestor of both the elements.

However, if both the elements are very far from each other, the ancestor would need to share the data down in the form of props. Then, the data will pass through multiple other intermediate elements on the way.

Sharing props in this way can become very confusing. Further, the movement of elements will become difficult because the elements are coupled to their parent elements. This will impact the performance of the app because data will cause every element to re-render every time.

Redux can solve this issue!

Redux comes to the rescue in such scenarios where several elements need to move the same data but are far apart from each other. It offers a central store which has the capability to save data from anywhere in the app.

This central store is another JavaScript object. Redux can also connect the individual elements to the store and extract the right bits of data required.

Accelerate development process

With Redux, the developers can hot-reload and retain the state of an app. Now, what is hot-reloading?

Well, it is used for reloading parts of the code without refreshing the full page, when the files are saved. At the time of reloading, the application is allowed to update the old code with the updated version of the app. This process will replace the existing component tree and update the app completely.

The main benefit of hot-reloading is that it will read all the current data from the Redux store in no time and then render it with the updated one. This helps developers to edit their UI in a live mode and accelerate the development process.

Easier to maintain

Redux is very easy to maintain because of its nature to organize code. Developers who use Redux can learn about the structure of any Redux project and maintain it without many hassles.

Easily debug applications

Developers can log their actions and states, which helps them to detect errors in code, any other bugs in a network or other forms that can arise during production. This helps them to debug the application whenever required and fix those errors without any difficulty.

Effortless testing

Redux makes it easier for developers to test their applications, because it uses pure reducer functions. It also enables ‘time-travel debugging’ for effortless testing.

Data updates

Like React, the Redux also uses a one-way data flow.

So, when any updates to the store are needed, there will be a single path to flow the data. This will eliminate the need for sending out the data to store two times for a successful update.

Wrapping up:

This article discusses the top features and benefits of using React and Redux for an app. While Redux can be a life-saver for many applications, it doesn’t mean that every application needs it. It is mostly used for complex apps that need several features and functionalities in it. You can also go for it if you need to manage states in your project.