What is Reactive?


Reactive is a new paradigm that will require developers to learn a different set of tools. This shift is not trivial and will inevitably take time (and a few mistakes). We recommend starting with a small greenfield project that makes use of Reactive in order to get comfortable with this paradigm. See More

Reactive uses streams, which are time-ordered sequences of events that can be triggered from anything. A stream starts with an observer, which can be a segment of code inside the application or it can be something as simple as an IoT sensor generating data. The event messages that the observer signals are then processed by handler functions. The handlers then either evoke action, terminate with an error condition or fork into a derivative stream.

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Another important aspect of the Reactive model is back-pressure, which allows for the asynchronous message-driven architecture to slow down or stop the flow of data when it’s getting out of control. This can be a major benefit when dealing with devices and sensors that generate a lot of data at a high rate, where it’s necessary to store it, cleanse it, run analytics and respond to requests without any interruptions to service.

The Reactive model also promotes shorter, more concise code and easier maintenance. It enables developers to focus less on implementation details and more on the interference between events that define business logic. It’s also easier to work with libraries that provide reactive behaviours, which reduces the amount of coding required to achieve the desired functionality.

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