[dojo-contributors] TodoMVC + DojoX MVC - Improvements/Issues

Ed Chatelain ed.chatelain at gmail.com
Tue Feb 28 09:43:13 EST 2012

Akira Sudoh and I have made many updates to dojox.mvc, mostly based upon
the comments and suggestions in this email chain, as well as suggestions
which Stephen Chung had made previously.

The latest dojox.mvc code is being developed in github, and is regularly
merged into the dojo svn (trunk).
You can find the code in github here: https://github.com/edchat/dojox_mvc

Feel free to make comments here, or in the "dojox.mvc 1.8 Specification"
or in github, or in  trac as you prefer.

Support for multiple attributes (attributes in addition to value) has been
added with dojox.mvc.at and dojox.mvc.sync, along with support for multiple
attributes there is also support for binding in one direction
(dojox.mvc.toor dojox.mvc.from) or bi-directional (dojox.mvc.both
which is the default),
and support for a converter (dojox.mvc.sync.converter) has also been added.

Array support has been added with dojox.mvc.StatefulArray and
dojox.mvc.ListController, which in addition to supporting array functions
on the model also has support for a cursor to make it easier to work with a
Master-Detail pattern.

The dojox.mvc.StatefulModel has been deprecated in favor of a lighter
weight model (dojox.mvc.getStateful) which can be as simple as a
dojo.Stateful, or it can be used with the controllers to support arrays,
edit (reset/commit), and stores.

You can see examples of all of the above in the dojox/mvc/tests folder.

Ed Chatelain

2012/1/21 James Thomas <jthomas.uk at gmail.com>

> I recently spent some time creating Dojo's entry (
> https://github.com/jthomas/todomvc) for the TodoMVC project (
> http://addyosmani.github.com/todomvc/) with help from Ed Chatelain and
> Ben Hockey. Never having used DojoX MVC before, I kept notes on issues
> encountered creating the application to provide some feedback on using the
> module to build a simply MVC application.
> *
> *
> *Overall, it worked really well and I definitely think we need to
> publicise this aspect of the toolkit much more.* *Newer toolkits
> (Backbone, Spine) really promote their MVC support and I'm not sure many of
> our users know we can do the same. *
> ** Extend StatefulModel API for arrays*
> Dealing with arrays was one of my main "pain points". It would be nice to
> have convenience methods like "push", "pop", for modifying arrays rather
> than having to use "add", "remove" with explicit array indices. Adding a
> new todo item meant having to explicitly include new list position as an
> argument which seems a bit unintuitive to me (
> https://github.com/jthomas/todomvc/blob/master/todo-example/dojo/js/todo/app.js#L89
> ).
> Removing a series of elements from an array (clearing all completed todos)
> was painful as you can only remove the elements by explicit index and we
> have to deal with the remaining list indices left-shifting each time we
> remove an element (
> https://github.com/jthomas/todomvc/blob/master/todo-example/dojo/js/todo/app.js#L61-78).
> Also found "bindInputs" wouldn't trigger on modifying array elements, had
> to fall back to "watch"
> https://github.com/jthomas/todomvc/blob/master/todo-example/dojo/js/todo/model/TodoModel.js#L60
> Would be nice to mirror Backbone's "Collection" model class by having our
> own "StatefulArray" class with the usual functions for operating on arrays?
> ** Support composite values as part of model declaration*
> We had two attributes in the model, "completed" and "remaining", that were
> composite attributes (calculated from other values). Would be nice if the
> StatefulModel supported declare these in meta-data for the StatefulModel
> rather than having to manually execute the mvc.bind method during
> instantiation.
> https://github.com/jthomas/todomvc/blob/master/todo-example/dojo/js/todo/model/TodoModel.js#L44-46
> *
> *
> ** Allow binding to inner attributes updates in child models from the
> parent. *
> *
> *
> Whenever the user modifies the checkbox, that todo item's model boolean
> value is updated and we can to re-calculate the "completed" and "remaining"
> model values. I couldn't find a way to bind to any changes to child model
> inner attributes from the parent "todo" model. The code has to manually
> bind to the "isDone" attribute on every child model, rather than listening
> for changes to the parent model array. This is more of a stretch goal but
> it would have been useful to have changes "bubble" up to the parent models.
> https://github.com/jthomas/todomvc/blob/master/todo-example/dojo/js/todo/model/TodoModel.js#L68-70
> ** Conditionals in view templates*
> *
> *
> If the user has completed some tasks and/or has some remaining, the view
> should show the "stats" element at the bottom of the page. Most of the
> other library examples used conditional logic in their templates to achieve
> this but I had to bind to a model change, manually toggling CSS classes
> representing the state.
> https://github.com/jthomas/todomvc/blob/master/todo-example/dojo/js/todo/app.js#L96-99
> I was under the assumption that DojoX DTL was pretty much dormant, have we
> got any plans to include this functionality in our dijit templating code in
> 2.0 or would fall under an MVC improvement?
> *Reviewing the 1.8 MVC specification (
> https://docs.google.com/document/d/1ejZlUwySI0q3n3scInw30drHa7no7Zm-WSZqtYx5scE/edit),
> there are already plans to fix some issues I encountered...*
> ** Binding to any widget property, not just "value".*
> Hit this issue trying to bind the dijit.form.CheckBox widgets to the
> StatefulModel, due to the "value" and "checked" attributes.
> ** Docs, Demo App, Integration with DojoX App*
> Found documentation sufficient for DojoX MVC but I did read the MVC code
> before starting so I'm probably not that representative of a new user.
> Hopefully this application will provide a good reference for getting
> started with DojoX MVC, but it'd be nice to have a less trivial example and
> also show integration with DojoX App and other parts of the toolkit.
> Regards,
> James Thomas
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Ed Chatelain
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