Now that Relay is out in preview, it will probably replace Flux entirely.

Why React?

A few months ago, the release of React Native by Facebook convinced me to make the leap to React.

I spent a while working on a React Native app and quickly learned that I needed to bring in Flux. After watching a few videos and reading a few blogs, I added my own implementation of flux to my react native app.

The javascript nature, minimalism, isomorphic potential, and cross platform possibilities were almost too good to be true. I fell in love with the stack and set out to refine the set of tools I’m using around my personal priorities.

Goals

  • Isomorphic app
    • Having the right information at page load is essential
    • Not having to compromise on interactivity is the dream
  • Native mobile support
    • Get as close to write once, run anywhere as possible
    • Without sacrificing quality
  • Sustainable tools
    • Ensure all tools use sound engineering practices
    • Make sure there is either a stable following to a tool or an easy pivot
  • High quality testing
    • Stack should be designed to hold complexity well
    • Regression tests should be simple and clear

What I’ve tried so far…

Why not go with vanilla Flux?

Using only the Flux tools given by Facebook seems like a no-brainer, but besides being extraneously verbose, you have to maintain, grow, and enforce the framework yourself.

Pros

  • Pretty good assurance that it will not fall out of popularity and leave you stranded.

Cons

  • Verbose in a bad way
  • Leaves a ton of tooling to the imagination
  • I lot of ways to mess up
  • Left to your own devices on isomorphism

Fluxible

A full featured flux framework from Yahoo.

Pros

  • Isomorphic
  • Lots of convenience functionality
  • Yahoo backs it and they still are a large company

Cons

  • A touch magical
  • Pretty large
  • Still a bit verbose

Reflux

A minimalistic rethinking of Flux for the functional programming world.

Pros

  • Simplicity
  • Relatively small
  • Easy to conceptualize and get started
  • No dispatcher, it is built in

Cons

  • Not isomorphic
  • Small bits of built in magic, make it less flexible
  • Suggests creating stores that subscribe to other stores
    • This could create hidden complexity layers deep

Flummox

Minimal isomorphic Flux.

Cons

  • Readme says it will not be supported

Pros

  • Gave me the name of a framework the author likes better

Redux

Advertised as “Atomic Flux with hot reloading,” A minimalistic, isomorphic take on Flux that is bare bones but extensible.

Current Winner

In spite of its small following and young API, the minimalistic approach only gets as far from the vanilla implementation of Flux as you want it to. This would make it relatively easy to pivot to another Flux implementation of maintain independantly.

Pros

  • Minimalistic
  • Extensible
  • Isomorphic
  • Hot reloads code
  • Dispatcher optional, atomic by default

Cons

  • Pre-1.0 API likely to have breaking changes
  • Smaller following
  • May not be a winner

Update Log

  • 2015-06-17: Published
  • 2015-08-14: Added note about Relay