Chapter 7. Enhancing Observables

Extending Observables

Observables by themselves can accomplish quite a bit. Of course, there are times with every framework that it simply cannot do everything you want. Knockout provides the ability to write custom functions to extend any observable.

Example 7-1 will extend (pun intended) the previous example that counted characters to prevent the text input from entering more than the allotted amount.

Example 7-1. Extending an observable
<!DOCTYPE html>
    <title>Data Binding with KnockoutJS</title>

    <textarea data-bind="textInput: myText"></textarea><br/>
    Characters remaining: <span data-bind="text: charactersRemaining"></span> 

    <script type='text/javascript' src='js/knockout-3.2.0.js'></script> 
    <script type='text/javascript' src='js/maxCharacters.js'></script> 
        function ViewModel() { 
            var self = this; 

            self.maxCharacters = 140; 

            self.myText = ko.observable('')
            .extend({maxCharacters: self.maxCharacters}); 

            self.charactersRemaining = ko.computed(function() { 
                return self.maxCharacters - self.myText().length; 

        var viewModel = new ViewModel(); 

In the previous example, the myText observable has been extended to call the maxCharacters function, passing in a variable that contains the max characters to allow (see Example 7-2).

The maxCharacters function has been placed inside a file called maxCharacters.js and placed within the previously created js folder. ...

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