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Lodash vs RxJS: What are the differences?

Introduction

Lodash and RxJS are two popular libraries in JavaScript that serve different purposes.

1. Purpose:

Lodash is a utility library that provides a wide range of functions for common programming tasks, such as array manipulation, string manipulation, object manipulation, and more. It focuses on providing a consistent and functional programming style. On the other hand, RxJS is a reactive programming library that introduces the concept of observables, which are used to handle asynchronous data streams and perform complex event handling operations.

2. Data Handling:

Lodash primarily deals with static data and provides functions for working with arrays, objects, and strings. It offers methods like map, filter, reduce, and many more to manipulate and transform data. On the other hand, RxJS is designed for handling dynamic and asynchronous data streams, such as user events, HTTP requests, and other asynchronous operations. It provides operators like map, filter, mergeMap, and others to transform and combine these streams.

3. Concurrency Control:

Lodash does not provide built-in support for concurrency control, which means it does not have mechanisms for handling multiple, parallel asynchronous operations. However, it can be used alongside other libraries for such purposes. In contrast, RxJS provides powerful concurrency control mechanisms through operators like merge, concat, forkJoin, and more. These operators allow combining and managing multiple asynchronous operations effectively.

4. Event Handling:

Lodash does not have dedicated features for event handling. It primarily focuses on data manipulation and functional programming concepts. On the other hand, RxJS is built specifically for handling events and asynchronous data streams. It provides operators like debounceTime, throttleTime, bufferTime, and more, which are useful for handling events and managing the flow of data in real-time applications.

5. Reactive Programming:

One of the key differences between Lodash and RxJS is their approach to programming. Lodash follows a more imperative and synchronous programming style, where functions are called explicitly to manipulate data. In contrast, RxJS promotes a functional-reactive programming paradigm, which allows developers to express complex asynchronous operations using a declarative approach. Reactive programming with RxJS involves composing streams of data and applying operators to handle and transform them effectively.

6. Learning Curve:

Lodash is relatively easier to learn and use as it focuses on providing utility functions for common programming tasks. It requires less understanding of reactive programming concepts and observables. On the other hand, RxJS has a steeper learning curve due to its reactive programming paradigm and complex event handling concepts. It requires a deeper understanding of observables, operators, and how to compose and handle asynchronous data streams effectively.

In Summary, Lodash is a utility library for static data manipulation, while RxJS is a reactive programming library for handling dynamic and asynchronous data streams. Lodash focuses on providing utility functions for common programming tasks, while RxJS introduces the concept of observables and provides operators for handling complex event-driven scenarios with concurrency control. Lodash follows an imperative style of programming, while RxJS promotes a functional-reactive style. RxJS has a steeper learning curve compared to Lodash.

Decisions about Lodash and RxJS

Fast Healthcare Interoperability Resources (FHIR) provides standard data objects in JSON format for the healthcare industry. Since JSON objects are hierarchical and tree-like, we had a need to defensively 'pluck' fields from our JSON objects and do lots of mapping. We tried jQuery and Underscore and a few other technologies like FHIRPath; but Lodash has been the most well supported, works in the most contexts, has the cleanest syntax, etc. We particularly like the ES6 version of Lodash, where we can import the method names directly, without resorting to * or _ syntax. We got hooked on the 'get' function to defensively pluck fields from objects without crashing our user interface, and have found countless uses for the other lodash functions throughout our apps. Lodash is great for developing and optimizing algorithms.

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Pros of Lodash
Pros of RxJS
  • 2
    Better than Underscore
  • 1
    Simple
  • 0
    Better that Underscore
  • 6
    Easier async data chaining and combining
  • 3
    Steep learning curve, but offers predictable operations
  • 2
    Observable subjects
  • 2
    Ability to build your own stream
  • 2
    Works great with any state management implementation
  • 2
    Easier testing
  • 1
    Lot of build-in operators
  • 1
    Simplifies state management
  • 1
    Great for push based architecture
  • 1
    Documentation

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Cons of Lodash
Cons of RxJS
  • 1
    It reduce the performance
  • 3
    Steep learning curve

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What is Lodash?

A JavaScript utility library delivering consistency, modularity, performance, & extras. It provides utility functions for common programming tasks using the functional programming paradigm.

What is RxJS?

RxJS is a library for reactive programming using Observables, to make it easier to compose asynchronous or callback-based code. This project is a rewrite of Reactive-Extensions/RxJS with better performance, better modularity, better debuggable call stacks, while staying mostly backwards compatible, with some breaking changes that reduce the API surface.

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What companies use Lodash?
What companies use RxJS?
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What tools integrate with Lodash?
What tools integrate with RxJS?
What are some alternatives to Lodash and RxJS?
jQuery
jQuery is a cross-platform JavaScript library designed to simplify the client-side scripting of HTML.
Underscore
A JavaScript library that provides a whole mess of useful functional programming helpers without extending any built-in objects.
Ramda
It emphasizes a purer functional style. Immutability and side-effect free functions are at the heart of its design philosophy. This can help you get the job done with simple, elegant code.
ES6
Goals for ECMAScript 2015 include providing better support for large applications, library creation, and for use of ECMAScript as a compilation target for other languages. Some of its major enhancements include modules, class declarations, lexical block scoping, iterators and generators, promises for asynchronous programming, destructuring patterns, and proper tail calls.
TypeScript
TypeScript is a language for application-scale JavaScript development. It's a typed superset of JavaScript that compiles to plain JavaScript.
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