Chapter 2. Routing

This chapter looks at recipes using React routes and the react-router-dom library.

react-router-dom uses declarative routing, which means you treat routes as you would any other React component. Unlike buttons, text fields, and blocks of text, React routes have no visual appearance. But in most other ways, they are similar to buttons and blocks of text. Routes live in the virtual DOM tree of components. They listen for changes in the current browser location and allow you to switch on and switch off parts of the interface. They are what give SPAs the appearance of multipage applications.

Used well, they can make your application feel like any other website. Users will be able to bookmark sections of your application, as they might bookmark a page from Wikipedia. They can go backward and forward in their browser history, and your interface will behave properly. If you are new to React, then it is well worth your time to look deeply into the power of routing.

Create Interfaces with Responsive Routes

Problem

People use most applications on both mobile and laptop computers, which means you probably want your React application to work well across all screen sizes. Making your application responsive involves relatively simple CSS changes to adjust the sizing of text and screen layout, and more substantial changes, which can give mobile and desktop users very different experiences when navigating around your site.

Our example application shows the names and addresses ...

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