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LiveView API

We are going to be using Typescript in our examples because LiveViewJS is very thoroughly typed, which

provides great type hints, autocompletion, etc. If the typescript syntax is confusing, just ignore it and focus on the code. :::

LiveView API is Five Methods

The LiveViewJS API is extremely simple but very flexible. There are only five methods that make up the LiveView API: mount, render, handleEvent, handleInfo, and handleParams. Technically, only render is required. The other four methods (mount, handleEvent, handleInfo, handleParams) are optional but usually mount and at least one other handle method is defined to enable a dynamic experience.

const helloLiveView = createLiveView({
render: () => html`Hello World`,
});

While "valid" a LiveView like this is not very useful nor particularly exciting. Let's look at a more useful example. :::

Example LiveView Implementation

It's helpful to look at a simple LiveView example to see how the LiveView API works. Here is a simple LiveView that renders a counter and has buttons to increment and decrement the counter:

counterLiveView.ts
import { createLiveView, html } from "liveviewjs";
/**
* A basic counter that increments and decrements a number.
*/
export const counterLiveView = createLiveView<
{ count: number }, // Define LiveView Context / State
{ type: "increment" } | { type: "decrement" } // Define LiveView Events
>({
// Setup / initialize the LiveView Context (i.e., set count to 0)
mount: (socket) => {
socket.assign({ count: 0 });
},
// Handle incoming increment and decrement events from User input
handleEvent: (event, socket) => {
const { count } = socket.context;
switch (event.type) {
case "increment":
socket.assign({ count: count + 1 });
break;
case "decrement":
socket.assign({ count: count - 1 });
break;
}
},
// Renders the Counter View based on the current Context / State
render: (context) => {
const { count } = context;
return html`
<div>
<h1>Count is: ${count}</h1>
<button phx-click="decrement">-</button>
<button phx-click="increment">+</button>
</div>
`;
},
});

Before we look at the five LiveView methods a very quick aside on the first line of the example above:

import { createLiveView, html } from "liveviewjs";

createLiveView helper

LiveViewJS provides various helpers to create and implement LiveViews. The createLiveView function is the canonical way to define the various functions that make up a LiveView (mount, render etc) and supports typing the LiveView via Typescript annotations TContext, TEvents, and TInfo.

html helper

The html function is a tagged template literal that allows you to write HTML with dynamic content in a very normal way using javascript template literals. The html tag handles escaping content to prevent injection attacks but just as importantly, the html tag also (transparently) creates the data structure necessary to efficiently calculate diffs between the current HTML and the new HTML. This is what allows LiveViewJS to efficiently update the DOM with only the changes.

Let's take a closer look at mount, render, handleEvent, handleInfo, and handleParams methods in the next sections.