Never Write Another HOC, use a render Prop

Michael Jackson on stepping away from HOCs, and using a render Prop instead.

instead of “mixing in” or decorating a component to share behavior, just render a regular component with a function prop that it can use to share some state with you.

He start with this HOC:

import React from 'react'
import ReactDOM from 'react-dom'

const withMouse = (Component) => {
  return class extends React.Component {
    state = { x: 0, y: 0 }

    handleMouseMove = (event) => {
      this.setState({
        x: event.clientX,
        y: event.clientY
      })
    }

    render() {
      return (
        <div style={{ height: '100%' }} onMouseMove={this.handleMouseMove}>
          <Component {...this.props} mouse={this.state}/>
        </div>
      )
    }
  }
}

const App = React.createClass({
  render() {
    // Instead of maintaining our own state,
    // we get the mouse position as a prop!
    const { x, y } = this.props.mouse

    return (
      <div style={{ height: '100%' }}>
        <h1>The mouse position is ({x}, {y})</h1>
      </div>
    )
  }
})

// Just wrap your component in withMouse and
// it'll get the mouse prop!
const AppWithMouse = withMouse(App)

ReactDOM.render(<AppWithMouse/>, document.getElementById('app'))

… which can be rewritten like this:

import React from 'react'
import ReactDOM from 'react-dom'
import PropTypes from 'prop-types'

// Instead of using a HOC, we can share code using a
// regular component with a render prop!
class Mouse extends React.Component {
  static propTypes = {
    render: PropTypes.func.isRequired
  }

  state = { x: 0, y: 0 }

  handleMouseMove = (event) => {
    this.setState({
      x: event.clientX,
      y: event.clientY
    })
  }

  render() {
    return (
      <div style={{ height: '100%' }} onMouseMove={this.handleMouseMove}>
        {this.props.render(this.state)}
      </div>
    )
  }
}

const App = React.createClass({
  render() {
    return (
      <div style={{ height: '100%' }}>
        <Mouse render={({ x, y }) => (
          // The render prop gives us the state we need
          // to render whatever we want here.
          <h1>The mouse position is ({x}, {y})</h1>
        )}/>
      </div>
    )
  }
})

ReactDOM.render(<App/>, document.getElementById('app'))

Interesting approach I’d say 🙂

You can watch the video (embedded above) or read the post.

Use a Render Prop! →

Sidenote: Talking about React Props: Validating Props easily with React PropTypes is worth a read if you’re not using them (yet).

Published by Bramus!

Bramus is a Freelance Web Developer from Belgium. From the moment he discovered view-source at the age of 14 (way back in 1997), he fell in love with the web and has been tinkering with it ever since (more …)

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