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LiveViewJS is an open-source framework for "LiveView"-based, full-stack applications in NodeJS and Deno.

The LiveView approach allows developers to build applications with rich user experiences like React, Vue, etc, but with far less code and complexity and far more speed and efficiency.

What is a LiveView?

The LiveView pattern, as popularized in Elixir’s Phoenix framework, shifts your UI’s state management, event handling to the server, calculating minimal diffs to drive updates in your HTML over WebSockets.

There are many benefits to this approach, including:

  • extremely fast, SEO-friendly page loads
  • simple state management that works well at any scale (not just small apps)
  • minimal data transfer (only send diffs)
  • no need to build (or operate) REST or GraphQL APIs

There are also some drawbacks, including:

  • requires a server (e.g. pure static sites are not the best fit)
  • requires a internet connection (e.g. offline-first apps are not the best fit - though sporadic internet connectivity is fine)

If you are building a web-based application, the LiveView approach is a super-powerful, some say "game-changing", way to build it and LiveViewJS is the best way to do it in NodeJS and Deno.

More detail

As mentioned, a LiveView is a server-rendered HTML page that, when loaded, connects back to the server via a persistent web socket. As the user interacts with the LiveView, the client to sends user events (click, keys, etc) via the websocket back to the server and the server responds with diffs to the HTML page in return.

Websockets and Diffs? That sounds complicated!

As a developer, you don't need to worry about connecting websockets or calculating diffs. LiveViewJS handles all of the complex parts of this for you. You just focus on implementing your business logic and rendering your views and LiveViewJS handles the rest.

Example "Counter" LiveView

Here's the typical "counter" in LiveViewJS:

import { createLiveView, html } from "liveviewjs";

* A basic counter that increments and decrements a number.
export const counterLiveView = createLiveView({
mount: (socket) => {
// init state, set count to 0
socket.assign({ count: 0 });
handleEvent: (event, socket) => {
// handle increment and decrement events
const { count } = socket.context;
switch (event.type) {
case "increment":
socket.assign({ count: count + 1 });
case "decrement":
socket.assign({ count: count - 1 });
render: (context) => {
// render the view based on the state
const { count } = context;
return html`
<h1>Count is: ${count}</h1>
<button phx-click="decrement">-</button>
<button phx-click="increment">+</button>

And here is what that LiveView looks like in a browser: LiveView Counter Example Screen Recording

Yes, it "looks" like a React/Vue/Svelt UI but the main differences are:

  • This page was first rendered as plain HTML (not a bundle of JS)
  • The client is automatically connected to a server via a websocket
  • The click events are automatically shipped to the server
  • The server then runs the business logic to update the state
  • The server automatically calculates the minimal diffs and sends them to the client
  • The client automatically applies the diffs to the DOM

Pretty cool eh? We think so too! While this counter LiveView isn't particularly useful, it gives you a quick intro to how LiveViews work and what they look like both as code and in the browser.

We've got a lot more to show you about LiveViewJS including some amazing features built-in the framework like:

  • real-time / multi-player support
  • simple, powerfil form validation with changesets
  • file uploads with image previews and drag and drop support, and more!

If you want more detail on LiveViews and how awesome they are feel free to keep reading. If you want to jump right in, check out the Quick Start guide.

LiveView is already proven technology

Phoenix LiveView is already extremely popular in the Elixir community and has been used to build production applications for years. It powers delightful user experiences and is battle-tested in terms of performance, reliability, and developer productivity.

Here is a quote from the author and inventor of LiveView, Chris McCord from "how we got to liveview":

LiveView strips away layers of abstraction, because it solves both the client and server in a single abstraction. HTTP almost entirely falls away. No more REST. No more JSON. No GraphQL APIs, controllers, serializers, or resolvers. You just write HTML templates, and a stateful process synchronizes it with the browser, updating it only when needed.


  • Faster way to build rich, full-stack application - LiveView abstracts away the complexity of client/server communication, state management, and synchronization to make it simple and fast to build rich, server-connected user experiences. See LiveView Paradigm for more details.
  • Real-time and multi-player built-in - Broadcasting updates to single or multiple clients is natively supported in LiveViewJS. Building features like chat, presence, and real-time dashboards are all supported by LiveView's Pub/Sub. We ship with support for Redis (NodeJS) and BroadcastChannels (Deno).
  • Extremely fast "first paint" - No massive JS bundle downloads, virtual DOM, "hydration", data-fetching, or the like. LiveViews are first rendered statically as part of a normal HTTP response. This means "first-paint" is extremely fast.
  • Extremely fast user-initiated updates - LiveView automatically maintains a persistent socket connection between client and server. User events are sent to the server and optimized diffs are sent back to the client. All this happens extremely fast and transparently to user and developer.
  • No need to build REST or GraphQL APIs - Full-stack applications usually have front-end and back-end code bases adding complexity, effort, and context switching. The LiveView paradigm merges front-end and back-end into a single abstraction layer which greatly increases productivity.
  • Robust, battle-tested browser libraries - LiveViewJS uses the exact same browser libraries as Phoenix LiveView which has 10s of thousands of production applications serving millions of users. This isn't some new, unproven technology.
  • No client/server state synchronization challenges - State synchronization between client and server is super complex for traditional SPAs. LiveViews do not have to worry about the challenges inherent in state synchronization because the server is always the source of truth and client updates are pushed to the client.
  • No client-side routing - No need to use a library like React Router or Vue Router. LiveViews route like multi-page applications which is handled automatically by the browser and server. (Another major complication rendered unnecessary.)


  • Not a drop-in replacement for traditional SPAs - LiveView is a new paradigm and is not a drop-in replacement for traditional SPA frameworks like React or Vue. It is a new way of building full-stack applications.
  • Not a great solution for pure static sites - Static sites that do not have user events or don't update often are not a great fit for LiveView.

How is this different than Phoenix LiveView?

The Phoenix project's backend is written in Elixir and runs on the ErlangVM. LiveViewJS is a protocol compliant, implementation of Phoenix LiveView but written in Typescript and runs on NodeJS and Deno. We want to bring the magic and productivity of LiveView to the NodeJS and Deno ecosystems and are obviously huge fans of Phoenix LiveView and the team that invented it. We believe in it so much that we think more developers should have access to the programming paradigm it enables.