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Jonas Grøndahl
Jonas Grøndahl

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Development Environment in React Native from a beginner's perspective - your thoughts?

Hello everybody!

Been working with React for a long time, just starting to work with React Native. I really like that you as React developer can start writing code that compiles to native code without too much struggle.

I have found a few programs however working with React Native in a development environment. Here is my list:

  • Having a Modal open as you reload the app, will cause the Modal component to get stuck requiring you to rebuild the app to see updated changes.

  • VSCode intellisense not working out of the box. Working with React normally, it feels very smooth just auto importing stuff as you write the component name + you get autocomplete as you're typing function/variables names etc.

  • Error codes imprecise. As syntax errors, wrong paths etc. happen, it is not always obvious what the mistake was. I don't have a concrete example right now but sometimes I just get a nonsense error message and I'm deleting code to see what caused the error.

  • Missing a way of checking out the exact layout of things. Some sort of Elements view that Chrome Dev Tools provide so you can see exactly what's going on 😒 really miss that, maybe it exists and I wasn't aware?

These are the problems that I'm facing as a beginner to React Native. Anyone got similar experience?

Top comments (2)

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liamfd profile image
Liam Doran • Edited on

I haven't experienced or don't have good advice for 1-3, unfortunately.

For

Missing a way of checking out the exact layout of things.

There's a layout inspector in the built in developer menu (cmd+d in the iOS simulator) under "show inspector". It's not as nice as the ones browsers have these days, but it can get the job done.

You can also hook the React devtools up to an RN app. There's a few options out there, but I prefer React Native Debugger, it's got them and a bunch of other tools built in.

Hope that helps, happy React Native-ing!

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jonasgroendahl profile image
Jonas Grøndahl Author

Thanks!

I will have a look :)

In defense of the modern web

I expect I'll annoy everyone with this post: the anti-JavaScript crusaders, justly aghast at how much of the stuff we slather onto modern websites; the people arguing the web is a broken platform for interactive applications anyway and we should start over;

React users; the old guard with their artisanal JS and hand authored HTML; and Tom MacWright, someone I've admired from afar since I first became aware of his work on Mapbox many years ago. But I guess that's the price of having opinions.