Chapter 5. Considering Electron

Should you build an application with Electron? For most developers and teams, that question comes down to three core considerations:

  • How performant can a JavaScript application really be, and how much work is it to achieve a fluid interface?

  • How much support can one expect from the community and peers: how much open source code is available, how much information about proven strategies can be found, how well does the stack integrate with other technologies used at the organization?

  • Lastly, where does Electron fall short: where should a developer expect to do more work than other frameworks might require? This closing chapter aims to answer exactly those questions.

Performant Web Applications

The prevailing and popular argument against building applications with any JavaScript-based solution (including Electron) is performance. JavaScript on the desktop is like CGI in movies: whenever it is applied correctly and with craftsmanship, it goes by unnoticed, meaning that JavaScript is only judged by its weaker implementations.

Electron’s biggest strengths are worth repeating. The web is the dominant platform for building cross-platform user interfaces. The combination of a modern JavaScript engine and built-in support for native code allows developers to build cross-platform applications that make maximum use of web technologies without giving up the ability to use native code for performance-intensive operations. In other words, whenever an Electron ...

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