React from Scratch
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React from Scratch

A friendly guide for absolute beginners

About the Book

This book is my answer to the question: how to teach React to a complete beginner, in as little time as possible?

Need to learn the basics quickly? This is your book.

About the Author

Ajdin Imsirovic
Ajdin Imsirovic

Ajdin Imsirovic is a full-stack web developer who has published several courses (way back in 2015) on the subject of web design and web development. 

Before self-publishing books on Leanpub, he authored four books on front-end development for Packt Publishing:

  1. Bootstrap 4 Cookbook (Over 75 recipes to help you build elegant and responsive web applications with Bootstrap 4), June 2017
  2. Elm Web Development (An introductory guide to building funcational web apps using Elm), March 2018
  3. Vue.js Quick Start Guide (Learn how to build amazing and complex reactive web applications easily using Vue.js), October 2018
  4. Vue CLI 3 Quick Start Guide (Build and maintain Vue.js applications quickly with the standard CLI), May 2019

Table of Contents

  • Chapter 0: Before we start
    • 0.1 Assumptions: Things to have before we start
    • 0.2 Disclaimer
  • Chapter 1: Building the simplest possible React app
    • 1.0 What is React?
    • 1.1 Install React Developer Tools in your Browser
    • 1.2 Let’s build the simplest possible React app
    • 1.3 Run our default React app and examine it in the browser
    • 1.4 Inspecting the app using React Developer Tools
    • 1.5 What happens when we run the npx create-react-app <appName>?
    • 1.6 Understanding our default React app’s folder and file structure
    • 1.7 Inspecting the contents of package.json
    • 1.8 Altering the default app
  • Chapter 2: Serving React from a CDN and running it without a build step
    • Challenge: Render three more h2 headings
    • What happened to the DOM?
    • Some Conclusions
    • Optimizing our simplest example’s code, the React way
    • Introducing JSX
    • Exercise: Find at least one interesting React Codepen
    • Making our simplest app a bit more dynamic
  • Chapter 3: Back to the Basics
    • Building a new version of the create-react-app starter application
    • How does our React app compile and how does it get watched?
    • Exercise 1: Build a new app about a car (locally)
    • Exercise 2: Build a new app about a car (on Codepen)
    • A fun addition to our Car codepen
  • Chapter 4, Intermission: Build a Bootstrap Layout
    • Prototyping our website layout’s components
    • Adding Bootstrap 5
    • Adding the Navbar - the MainMenu component
    • Adding the Jumbotron component
    • Fixing the rendering issue
    • Adding the Footer component
    • Coding our React Bootstrap layout locally
    • Updating the App.js file
    • One component per file
    • Importing a component to App.js
    • Adding the jumbotron and the footer component
  • Chapter 5: Adding icons
    • Importing the icons module
    • Understanding how react-icons work
    • Adding another icon to a component
  • Chapter 6: Regular functions to arrow functions
    • What Babel does with our ES6 function components
  • Chapter 7: Looping over data
    • Adding the data file
    • Displaying the array data
    • Passing props to display the data dynamically
    • Adding another prop
    • Props destructuring
  • Chapter 8: Beginner-level tips and tricks
    • Code organization: Reorganizing our reactbootstrap1 app
    • Passing objects as props
    • Default props
    • Using ternary statements in our components
    • Using fragments
    • Handling events
    • Simplifying a complex component (without props)
    • Simplifying a complex component (with props)
    • Don’t display a component if a prop is not passed in the parent
    • Conditionally returning a different string than the one passed in from a prop
    • Conclusion
  • Chapter 9: Class-based components, functional components, and React hooks
    • Class components, functional components… what’s all the fuss about?
    • Class components
    • React Hooks
    • The useState React Hook
    • An example of updating text on a button click
    • Update the count in a separate method
    • Display text from an array on button click using useState in React
    • Rendering li elements from an array of objects
    • An example of updating a value from an input element using the useState hook
  • Chapter 10: Let’s build a todo app
    • Add the App component with basic static structure
    • Get the initial state dynamically using the useState React hook
    • Convert the HTML form element to a separate functional component
    • Extract the state data to a separate component
    • Handle submit events on the form
    • Validate that the form input isn’t blank
    • Get the value of user input and store it in the TodoInput component’s state variable
    • Update the todos state with user-provided input
    • Add the done button on each of the todo items
  • Chapter 11: Conclusion

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