Model view controller (MVC): Useful understanding Architecture for React

model view controller

When adding codes with different functions, what is the best tool to use? The answer is MVC – Model View Controller. It is a popular and effective way to organize your code’s function into their own. For instance, some code keeps the app data, some provides great visuals and some controls your app features.

MVC bears great benefits to help your app or site run smoothly and clearly. Before jumping into that section, we should understand what it is. Our devoted team from ArrowHiTech hopes that you will read this article till the end to get the real hang of MVC. 

Let’s get started!

What Is MVC?

Like we’ve said, Model-View-Controller is a helpful way to organize and structure your web app. Developers usually use this software design pattern to develop UI and separate internal information. Overall, it helps to design the layout of the page.

MVC, like the name itself, consists of 3 elements:

  • Model (Database)
  • View (Client)
  • Controller (Server)

Model code either holds the raw data or defines essential app components. Imagine that you are planning to build a Fitness App, model code helps define the ‘exercises’, ‘food intake’ and ‘body measurement’. For that reason, you can simply refer Model to Database.

View code makes your app look appealing and defines UI and UX. In other words, it determines how users can see and use your app or site, it refers the most to Client.

Controller code receives user input and produces outcome. It influences both sides but only Model code can change it. We often refer Controller code to Server.

Below is a chart to help you better understand the flow of MVC:

model view controller 2
The flow of MVC structure

MVC Pros and Cons

Thanks to a smooth working process, MVC is super flexible. Some notable benefits are:

  • Synchronous Development: many developers can work on model, controller and view at the same time.
  • High Cohesion: it is easy to control MVC in teams because of their separation.
  • Multiple View: models can have multiple views.
  • Easy Modification: also, this design pattern is simple to maintain and use.

Yet, it is not always 100% helpful:

  • It adds a sense of complexity into the setup process.
  • A minor change in model or controller can affect the whole system.

MVC Use in Web App

At first, it was developed for desktops. However, these days, MVC has been widely used as the design for web apps in programming languages. Furthermore, popular web frameworks namely PHP, Python, JavaScript and C# having MVC-based servers. In those cases, Controller receives users’ input in form of submission and you can right away get an updated web page from View.

MVC components can be conducted partly in these common frameworks: AngularJS, JavaScriptMVC or EmberJS.

Can we apply MVC with React via Flux?

Using Flux to apply MVC with React is a common issue. However, you’d rather get yourself into trouble. To make it easy, you can refer to React as View in the MVC structure. Since Model – Controller – View has multiple interactions affected one another, one minor change leads to the whole system crash. Therefore, it is hard to detect the roots to fix. 

For such large app like Facebook, Flux (or Facebook’s own MVC structure) can hardly handle the huge flow of data.

Quick comparison between MVC and Flux

We also have another detailed article about Flux that you should check out! Here, we will quickly compare MVC and Flux.

Flux is another type of software design pattern!

Instead of 3, Flux is made up of 4 components:

  • Actions: handle events passed by the view component.
  • Dispatcher: the centre hub for your app. 
  • Stores: hold the app state and is a data layer of Flux pattern. Never mistake it with Model!
  • Views: generate Action through Dispatcher and will be sent to Stores.

Below is the Flux flow chart to help you understand it better!

model view controller 3
The flow of Flux

As you can see now, there are 3 main differences between MVC and Flux:

  1. Flux’ process is uni-directional while MVC’ is bi-directional.
  2. Flux’ stores can consist of any app while MVC only stores single items.
  3. Dispatcher, Flux’ beginning point is much easier to debug.

That is to say about key related MVC information. For further questions or issues, you can always contact ArrowHiTech!

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Wrap Up

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