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This is true. AngularJS is much better than what we had before, it is kind of large and monolithic.

The cycle probably goes thusly:

Large monolithic framework comes and shows everyone a new way of doing things (Angular/Django).

People think it is too large and monolithic, so make microframeworks (Flask/Whatever comes after Angular).

The next step will be a kind of happy medium.




Except that Backbone.js, a micro-framework if there ever was one, exploded in popularity long before most people had even heard of AngularJS.


Backbone was the start of the cycle. It came around at a time when front-end apps were largely jQuery soup and put polish on best practices that good JS developers were already doing. Then a lot of other frameworks were developed which largely started from the same code-first premise that Backbone had/has, and Angular "won" by introducing a new paradigm built on declarative binding.

I predict that the next winner will leverage web components and do the one thing that makes that paradigm better.


Backbone doesn't do data binding; it's a completely different thing.

(That's why things like rivet and epoxy exist; because backbone doesn't do it right)


Correction: Backbone doesn't try to be the kitchen sink like Angular. Its source code is about 500 lines, and its docs say as much:

"Two way data-binding" is avoided. While it certainly makes for a nifty demo, and works for the most basic CRUD, it doesn't tend to be terribly useful in your real-world app. Sometimes you want to update on every keypress, sometimes on blur, sometimes when the panel is closed, and sometimes when the "save" button is clicked. In almost all cases, simply serializing the form to JSON is faster and easier. All that aside, if your heart is set, go for it.


This. I would add angular is good for teams requiring extensive structure. The cost is control. If you're building a corporate webapp, angular is great to keep everybody neat. If you're doing something unprecedented such as 3D rendering or a new UI element, angular will hinder more than backbone.


I never understood how JQuery and JS were just dumped the past 3-4 years in favor of all thse complex frameworks like AngularJS, Ember, etc... is there something these frameworks can do that JQuery can't? Can they make fancy single page apps and JQuery can't? I need to be enlightened.

Or is it simply ppl need to exercise their mental creativity?


Among other things that Angular, Ember & others bring, what you should understand here is that JQuery does not help you to structure your code. Those frameworks offer the type of structure that makes it easier to reason about how an app should be built, and it helps a lot when you're working in a team.

JQuery and JS were certainly not dumped, it is just that people writing single page apps moved on and are now using tools that help them.


"I never understood how JQuery and JS were just dumped the past 3-4 years in favor of all thse complex frameworks like AngularJS, Ember, etc..."

Well, you can't have Angular without JS so we'll focus on the point of jQuery here.

jQuery does a few things really well – so well that Angular itself uses jQuery (or jqLite by default). angular.element(selector) returns a jQuery object.

Angular also does a few things well. Code reusability and testability are much easier to achieve with Angular, in my opinion. Features like data-binding also help to reduce boilerplate code.


> Well, you can't have Angular without JS

Well you certainly can use it without writing any JS:

https://github.com/angular/angular.dart

However, you're going to compile it to JS when you're done.


Ok, cool. if Angular returns a jQuery object then its proof that it uses jQuery quite extensively. So does Ember.


There was a similar discussion last week. What I said then was that a lot of the things you would use jQuery for have a different solution in Angular: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=7396016.


jQlite is a pretty small subset of jQuery. Many things are left out to keep it lean. For example $(el).offset()/height()/width() etc. Mostly only the DOM methods are left as they do still need a bit of normalization across browsers.


Personally, the two big draws to me of Angular were "free" (as in, I don't have to write much code) DOM<->data binding, and the explicit goal of testability.

As a learning exercise, I wrote a page using just jquery, rewrote it in backbone, and then rewrote it in angular. Backbone helped me separate concerns; Angular helped me do that while writing _way_ less code, since I didn't have to manage keeping the DOM and the JS model in sync.


I had the same experience as well.

I redid a relatively trivial CRUD interface from backbone to Angular. The amount of code that I didn't need in Angular was ridiculous. Most of the code in backbone was moving stuff from the DOM into JS. Like var x = $('#elem').val(); kind of things over and over just did not need to be there in Angular.

I think that these kinds of interfaces hit a really good sweet spot with Angular and other databinding frameworks.


Agreed - data-binding and "magic" automatic updates to the view when the model changes are key to what make Angular attractive. The focus on testing is nice too, though.


Yes, there are a tons of things that jQuery cant do out of the box, like handle state in your application or keeping your client and server data reliably in sync, list goes on. Also, lots of frameworks haven't ditched jQuery, for instance, Ember.$ is a reference to Embers copy of jQuery.


>* is there something these frameworks can do that JQuery can't? Can they make fancy single page apps and JQuery can't? I need to be enlightened.*

jQuery has nothing to do with whether the app is single page or not.

Those frameworks make writing single page apps very easy.


It is strange to see Angular labeled "large" and "monolithic" here, when it was blasted for being too small and simple by one of the Ember guys (http://eviltrout.com/2013/06/15/ember-vs-angular.html).

I have suffered trough JEE which is/was really humungous, and Angular is really tiny in comparison.


imo AngularJS can be pretty micro and scales nicely. Its one of its major strengths, as you can use it to just build a tiny widget inside an existing page or all in and build a huge application.


Micro in the code you write, not the code that's loaded, so it doesn't seem practical to me.


It's worth noting that one of the goals listed for 2.0 in this post is increased modularity, which they imply will let you only load the pieces you're actually using.


What's after Flask? I don't see any Python framework after Flask.


such as vuejs?




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