Meteor review

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I recently used the Meteor framework to create a demonstration to do list manager. It was the first time I've used Meteor so I have an opportunity to reflect on my experience.

tl;dr

Meteor is a highly opinionated front- and back- end JavaScript framework for creating single-page applications. Many of the choices it makes are the right ones for reducing waste in a typical web development cycle.

When I first encountered Meteor a year and a half ago I was turned off by how opinionated it was. I was a newcomer to Node.js and didn't want to learn about Node with decisions already made for me. This time as I got to know Meteor better I've come to appreciate the choices it makes on my behalf.

For example, if I want to create a web page with CSS and JavaScript files, I would traditionally have to write it with link and script elements like this:

<!DOCTYPE html>  
<html>  
 <head>
  <title>Sample page</title>
  <link rel="stylesheet" href="style.css">
 </head>

 <body>
  <h1>Sample page</h1>
  <p>This is a <a href="demo.html">simple</a> sample.</p>
  <script src="script.js"></script>
 </body>
</html>  

With Meteor, I'm able to just throw the CSS and JavaScript files into a folder on the server named client. Meteor bundles, minifies, and creates the DOM elements to include the files in my HTML automatically. I don't even have to refresh the browser when adding a new file to see it update. Magic!

Meteor includes a new authentication technology which doesn't require passwords (nor their hashes) to be stored on the server. How cool is that?

Continue reading part 2.

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