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Time to (back)bone up post

James Laws: "Time to bone up and learn JavaScript"

Kevin Stover: "Time to Back-Bone up! Yeah? Get It?"

Earlier this week, the WP Ninjas Team gathered around the conference table (really it is a ping pong table), ordered lunch in, and queued up the State of the Word with Matt Mullenweg.

As a development company, the big part of Matt’s address was the new JavaScript first direction of WordPress (Homework: Learn JavaScript, deeply). Starting with Automattic’s announcement of Calypso for WordPress.com, this move was very apparent.

Learn JavaScript, deeply." - Matt Mullenweg

This does not come as a surprise to many, especially at the WP Ninjas Office, as we have spent the last five months rewriting Ninja Forms in backbone.js for a new form building experience.

We’ve realized for a while that the previous implementation of PHP output and jQuery spaghetti was not sustainable. In order to create an improved user experience, decrease the occurrence of bugs, and quickly onboard new developers, the codebase would need to be re-organized with a web application architecture. The decision was made to use backbone.js for many reasons, but if nothing else backbone.js already ships with WordPress.

This new direction, for both Ninja Forms and WordPress.com, is a big shift for the WordPress development community."

This new direction, for both Ninja Forms and WordPress.com, is a big shift for the WordPress development community, as the language focus moves from PHP with a little jQuery to a closer split between PHP and JS frameworks.

As James Laws reminds the Ninja Forms team, “time to bone up and learn JavaScript.” For us, that means Backbone.js, and as Kevin Stover put it, “time to Backbone up”.

Update: I recommend reading Kevin's thoughts on Backbone vs. React in the wake of Calypso and the State of the Word.