While working through sample after sample for Node.js and React.js, I experienced a pattern that wasn’t very helpful. Instead of truly starting from scratch, the samples kept walking through step-by-step of cloning a working solution. They’d start with “Step 1: paste this fully-working code into this file” and “Step 2: paste this fully-working code into this other file.” I was having a hard time finding a breakdown of the concepts being applied.
I wanted to learn by starting truly from scratch and building the app up in logical, incremental steps. This tutorial uses the following high-level approach:
- Create a Hello World web server in Node.js
- Use React’s JSX syntax to define component content
- Use Gulp to improve the development workflow
- Extract a React.js component from the code and render it on the server
- Introduce a client-side React.js component (without JSX) to render on the page
- Refactor the client-side component to use JSX
- Integrate the server-side and client-side React.js usage, achieving an “Isomorphic” page
These 7 major steps are achieved over the course of 20 detailed iterations on the project, starting from nothing and building a functioning isomorphic page. Let’s get started by getting Node.js serving a “Hello World” page.
Begin » Creating Hello World in Node.js