InfoWorld: Does React work with TypeScript at all right now?
Hunt: Parts of it do. We would like to make more of it work with TypeScript. The great thing about [TypeScript] is you can gradually start to adopt it, so if you write your code in TypeScript it will work with React. But we'd like to let TypeScript give React better guarantees for correctness.
InfoWorld: How many developers are using React, or is there really no way to know?
InfoWorld: Facebook had a controversy where the company redid its iOS application in native Objective-C. Do you think you might redo it in React?
Hunt: Well, I'm not really working on those teams, so I'm not sure what their plans are. What I can say is that the Web platform does have a lot of problems still, but it's also solved a lot of stuff since then. We didn't have React back then. Maybe the math on that decision would be a little different with React, but I honestly wasn't involved with that kind of stuff.
InfoWorld: Can you name any other high-profile applications that use React?
Hunt: We're starting to see a lot of really great companies use it. Khan Academy, the e-learning startup, they're using React. We're starting to see companies like Venmo and Airbnb use React as well. The New York Times has used React on some of their interactive media.
InfoWorld: Is there anything else that you want to say about React?
Hunt: This is actually a fundamentally different mental model for building user interfaces. This isn't just a different syntax of the same old ideas. This is a very different way of looking at the problem. Even if you're not looking to build a lot of user interfaces on the Web or you don't want to use React, we do have some ideas that I think are fairly novel. It's worth at least checking out the documentation and seeing the ideas behind it.
This story, "React: Making faster, smoother UIs for data-driven Web apps," was originally published at InfoWorld.com. Get the first word on what the important tech news really means with the InfoWorld Tech Watch blog. For the latest developments in business technology news, follow InfoWorld.com on Twitter.