Book Image

Designing React Hooks the Right Way

By : Fang Jin
Book Image

Designing React Hooks the Right Way

By: Fang Jin

Overview of this book

React hook creates a unique solution for using states in function components to orchestrate UI communication. They provide you with an easy interface to write custom data management solutions with low development and maintenance costs. Understanding how Hooks are designed enables you to use them more effectively, and this book helps you to do just that. This book starts with a custom-crafted solution to reveal why Hooks are needed in the first place. You will learn about the React engine and discover how each built-in Hook can manage a persistent value by hooking into it. You will walk through the design and implementation of each hook with code so that you gain a solid understanding. Finally, you'll get to grips with each Hook's pitfalls and find out how to effectively overcome them. By the end of this React book, you'll have gained the confidence to build and write Hooks for developing functional and efficient web applications at scale.
Table of Contents (12 chapters)

Understanding useRef design

React provides a useRef hook to create a ref:

const Title = () => {
  const ref = useRef(null)
  return <h1 ref={ref}>Hello World</h1>

The useRef hook takes an initial value as its only input argument and returns a ref object, putting that initial value under the current property.

There's no additional data structure required for useRef, other than the basic fiber hook support:

Figure 8.2 – useRef design

Just like useState and useEffect uses state to store state and the effect, useRef uses state to store the ref. Next, let's take a look at how it's implemented.

The useRef hook follows a typical hook setup where it takes a path of either mountRef or updateRef, depending on whether the fiber is under mount or update via the isFiberMounting flag, as explained in Chapter 3, Hooking into React:

function useRef(initialValue) {
  if (isFiberMounting) {...