re: React Beginner Question Thread ⚛ VIEW POST

re: Same problem that functions are trying to solve in regular programming languages, but applied to UI. Does this help? (Let me know if it’s too brief...

Actually, if I understand what you're getting at, that helps a lot. I can definitely see the value in making the mental model of assembling a large, dynamic UI be similar to that of assembling a "normal" (for lack of a better word) program.


Yep, that’s about it.

The interesting difference from “normal functions” is that the “React functions” (we call them “components”) can be stateful. For example a Checkbox component doesn’t just “return” something unlike a normal function, but can be toggled on and off. We call this “state”.

The state in "React functions" (components) resembles C++'s local variables, defined inside functions using the static keyword. Such variables keep their value between function calls. If something similar existed in JS, you would be closer to being able to use functions to implement components exclusively, and avoid downsides of using classes that give you a hard time working on async rendering and compilation.

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