There’s Ember, React, Angular. Vue and Preact. And don’t forget about Ionic, Express, or Node. jQuery, Meteor, and Bootstrap deserve a mention, too. Oh, and what about…
Whether you want DOM manipulation, an MVC framework, AJAX calls, or something else entirely, there’s is likely a library out there you can pull from to help you on your way.
As a WordPress user, that should be music to your ears, and here’s why.
Simple: a buncha prewritten code. Nothing fancy. You can do a bunch of fancy stuff with them, though. Which is why they’re awesome.
First Things First
Frameworks can be broken down into a few categories: front-end frameworks, back-end frameworks, and full-stack frameworks. If you’re not familiar with the terms, front-end is what the user interacts with, back-end is what deals with server-side issues, and full-stack handles both the front-and-back ends.
You’ve probably heard of a few of the most common/popular frameworks:
How Does All This Play into WordPress?
Some of those libraries don’t. Which is the whole point I want to make: you don’t need a back-end framework (and in that vein, a full-stack framework) if you’re working with WordPress. Our delightful Core already handles that level of structure for us. (Note that is a moot point if you’re a dev who is specifcally contributing to Core and/or doing a ton of customization on your own.)
But even that may be changing soon…thanks to the WP REST API.
Yep, you can now directly access the back-end of your site from the front without having to muddle through PHP, slowing down response time and limiting functionality. WPMU has an breakdown of using the REST API you should check out, too.
You can do so much with JS and REST that it’s almost scary to think about. When you’re using React (and specifically React Native), you can use the WordPress database as a back-end for your mobile app without ever touching PHP. You can directly interact with MySQL through JSON via the REST API.
While React Native is specifically able to do that for mobile apps, you can also use any front-end framework or library to do the same thing–Vue.js and Ember and normal old React (or Preact, if ya nasty).
And if you’re really nasty, you can take one of these libraries, make your site, and use just enough Swift of Java to wrap it in a web view and throw it up on an App Store thanks to the REST API. It’s a bit ugly, but it should work.
The Future of WordPress
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