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Next.js is the Universal React Framework you've been looking for

React is now so commonplace that it's probably more popular than jQuery in bespoke projects without legacy dependencies. Part of this popularity is that React is by nature quite straightforward, simple even. What continues to add complexity to the ecosystem is the tooling around it.

Next.js is a framework that builds heavily on React, but tries to bring simplicity to the bootstrapping of complete React applications. Including routing and server side rendering. The developers of the framework draw inspiration from their background as PHP developers.

PHP became ubiquituous on the web not because of technical merits, but because of the sheer simplicity of it. This is what Next.js also provides, as adding new routes is as simple as adding a new file in a directory. At a minimum this just contains a simple stateless React component written in JSX:

export default () => {
    return <div>Hello</div>
}

With this simple entry you already get all the necessary groundwork for a Server Side Rendered React application. And while Next.js does by default promote simplicity, the team has also provided a wide range of examples how it can be used together with JavaScript frameworks such as Koa or Express.

Since the release of Next.js in October 2016 the team has continued their amazing work, with the upcoming Next.js 3.0 version coming with the latest ECMAScript features such as static export and dynamic imports.

Learn more about Next.js:

Written by Jorgé on Friday June 23, 2017

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