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01.29.2017

How to manipulate time with Observables

In this video, Fullstack senior Adam Intrator discusses the power of Observables. These are event streams in the form of an object (as implemented by the RxJS library). They can be thought of as arrays whose elements are emitted over time. Indeed, many of the methods available to Observables are analogous to Array methods with the same name (map, filter, and concat, for example). The overall toolset of Observable methods is extensive, and allows programmers to merge, transform, delay, and otherwise manipulate streams of data and their associated method calls in a myriad of ways. Like Promises, Observables help make asynchronous code more declarative, easier to read and manage, and offer a way out of ‘callback hell’, with the added benefits of allowing a stream of returned values – where Promises only allow one – and of being cancellable. Observables have been integrated into React-Redux by a team at Netflix (which itself makes heavy use of FRP and RxJava) in the form of a piece of Redux middleware called redux-observable (inspired by and meant as an alternative to redux-thunk). Redux-observable introduces the power of event streams into the flow of action dispatches to the Redux store, and also serves as a great entryway into world of FRP for JavaScript coders.

Project Members: Adam M. Intrator

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