Before you continue, this is not a post about which framework/library is “better”. This is simply a walk-through of how I, as a beginner developer saddled up, threw on my armor and filled my canteen to traverse the world outside of VanillaJS.
My first fork in the road was trying to choose between React and Vue.
React, I had already heard of and was aware of its popularity and its backing by Facebook. Vue, I read about how it was progressive and had a pretty friendly learning curve.
I went with the latter.
I bought an Udemy course and was off to the races. I understand that I was still new to all this framework mumbo jumbo but for some reason I failed to grasp what the purpose of this was, how it could be best utilised and how it worked. Looking back now it’s safe to say Vue was much too user friendly for me. The functionality of it, made it super easy to achieve a particular result which meant it failed or should I say prevented me from gaining a deep understanding as it didn’t challenge me to try work out how everything worked under the hood. For the purpose of trying to learn and enhance my knowledge as a beginner developer, Vue wasn't suitable.
I pivoted and switched to React.
Due to Vue’s beautiful simplicity, moving from Vue to React was quite….different. But, the way React works is that it challenges you to gain a deeper understanding of how everything works. Furthermore, it encourages users to adopt a certain coding and thinking pattern, to develop with a modular mindset. This is pretty important for any beginner developer.
Once I gained a basic understanding of React, I went back to complete the Vue Udemy course. This time round my experience was a lot more engaging and I was able to understand the concepts of Vue much more easily. Also, being able to achieve certain things that would’ve required much more lines of code if tried with React, it was quite an enlightening experience. I really did learn to appreciate Vue more and gain a better understanding on why it was becoming so popular.
I now love both React and Vue equally but as there aren’t many Vue jobs available in Australia (this will eventually change with how Vue is progressing), I’ve had to adapt and focus on React, polishing my Vue skills every now and then.
Due to the reasons above. I encourage beginner developers to learn the basics of React first and then pickup Vue if they so desire. In addition, don’t adopt a silo mindset. These are tools and should be used accordingly. Need to build a lightweight or medium sized application, or maybe even prototype an idea? Use Vue. Building a larger application? Use React.