What is ReasonML? Know Reason Installation Steps

The Reason, also referred to as ReasonML, is an extension of syntax and a toolchain for OCaml developed by Jordan Walke, who also developed React on Facebook. Reason provides a syntax that is familiar to JavaScript programmers and can be transpiled into OCaml.

When we think about ReasonML and the fact, that Facebook supports it does not tell the whole story. It’s a new technology that has developed over the past few years and has lots of potential that are not limited to the impact of JavaScript tools but also due to the ability of a compiler to work from a native code view.

What’s ReasonML?

ReasonML is the latest tech used by Facebook to create React applications and promote it as a new alternative to JavaScript (ES2030, they say).

In the simplest form:

  • A brand new method of writing Reacts applications.
  • A JavaScript-friendly language for the OCaml semantics
  • Statically typed, with the ability to infer type;
  • Functional However, it is not pure.
  • Most of the time, it’s developed to JavaScript;
  • The support of Facebook as well as Bloomberg.

How did React shape ReasonML?

React’s programming style is much more functional than the object-oriented approach to programming. It’s thus not unusual to find that.

As the concept was beginning to develop, its author, Jordan Walke, decided to convert the code to JavaScript and carry on the process from that point on. There weren’t any mature translators to JavaScript, and, even at the time, the world wasn’t yet willing to accept an unmainstream programming language or design.

In the end, React gained popularity as a tech that is a part of it being part of the JavaScript programming language.

However, despite this great success in the JavaScript community, some began to believe that something was going on in the background. Other projects that were related – like React, ReduxElm, and Purescript have begun to gain traction, moving the mindset of the community closer to the practical and statically typed origins of React.

This led Facebook to consider that it would be practical and feasible to React toward its roots. Eventually, they found that much of the groundwork had been laid out for React.

Beginning with BuckleScript

Certain companies are working on crucial user interfaces using dynamic or slowly typed languages that could result in unimaginable loss.

The transition from BuckleScript to ReasonML

If Facebook planned to create React’s React ecosystem statically coded, BuckleScript was undoubtedly a great option. They appeared to believe that JavaScript, with its well-known curly-braced syntax, was the main reason for React’s popularity.

If you’re from JavaScript-land, it doesn’t feel like it’s a bit foreign.

Sure, functional paradigms and sound typing as a default are wonderful; however, is it worth the effort of learning another language? Isn’t it better to focus on my work and stick to my existing libraries and tools?

In this instance, not actually. Reason’s group behind Reason has taken particular time to ensure that the syntax is suitable for both novices to programming and those who are migrating to JavaScript JavaScript ecosystem. The syntax is similar enough that the function described below is syntactically compatible for both JavaScript and Reason

How can I begin?

If this article has got you interested in Reason and you’re eager to start, I’ve put together a few sites to get you up and up.

The first step is to head and browse through the Documents for Reason. They’re incredibly well-written and constantly updated. They’ll help you get familiar with the design principles that underlie the syntax, best methods, and goals for the future.

If you’re thinking of using Reason to develop web applications, you should go through the BuckleScript Documentation. If you’re interested in learning how to utilize ReasonReact to build your React applications, here’s the guide and documents!

In the end, if you require assistance, do not hesitate to contact me or post a comment on this blog! You can also join the Discord channel on Reason, and the members there are very friendly.

1. Description

Spacemacs layer is for ReasonML is based on the reason-mode.

1.1. Features:

  • Syntax highlighting / indentation
  • Autocomplete (via merlin)
  • Lint/error display (via merlin, and flycheck if it is enabled) layers are enabled)
  • REPL via the rtop
  • Auto-formatting (via refmt)

2. Install

To use this layer, you must add it to ~/.spacemacs. You will need to add reasonml to the existing dotspacemacs-configuration-layers list in this file.

2.1. Merlin

It is necessary to have the merlin (binaries ocaml merlin and the ocaml merlin Reason) installed in your computer and on the PATH for auto-completion and errors.

If you’re aware of the spam you could

Installation merlin reason

to find the ocaml merlin and the ocaml merlin-reason to your current OPAM switch.

2.2. Refmt

Similar to Merlin similarly to Merlin, you’ll require similar to Merlin, you’ll need the refmt file to navigate.

If you’re familiar with Opam, you can Opam the install issue to gain refmt to your current Opam switch.

If your project requires the specific version of refmt then you can modify the refmt command (via customize-mode or (setq refmt-command ..)) to the path of the specific version of the. 

It is also possible to use the special value ‘npm’ or ‘opam’ to run refmt with npx and executable, which will keep you on the latest version of the OPM switch, or the project-local option of node_modules.

You can switch refmt by saving it using the SPC command m. To make it permanent you must create the layer variable

(reasonml: variables reason-auto-refmt t)

in your dotspacemacs-configuration-layers.

3. Key bindings

The most important bindings The main bindings packages.el for the principal list.

The advantages of the OCaml

The basis of ReasonML, OCaml, brings the following advantages:

It is a well-established language (created in the year 1996) that has been proven in a variety of projects. Facebook has been using it in various projects (e.g. Flow).

Its basis is functional programming with an extensive type system. It also supports object-oriented programming and changeable states.

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