Chapter 1: Introduction to Reken

1.1 What is Reken?

Reken is a powerful and lightweight JavaScript library designed to simplify the process of creating dynamic web pages using just HTML, CSS, and a dash of JavaScript. It empowers HTML developers, UX designers, and web app builders to add interactivity and dynamic behavior to their web pages without the need to delve into complex JavaScript frameworks or libraries.

At its core, Reken operates by enhancing standard HTML elements with custom data-* attributes that allows you to:

Reken's primary goal is to maintain simplicity while achieving efficient dynamic updates in the Document Object Model (DOM) without relying on a virtual DOM tree. This approach not only makes it lightweight but also ensures performance.

1.2 Key Features

1.2.1 Minimal Learning Curve

Reken is designed to minimize the learning curve for developers who are already comfortable with HTML, CSS, and basic JavaScript. You can start creating dynamic web pages with Reken using the same skills and tools you're already familiar with.

1.2.2 Single DOM Tree

Unlike some other JavaScript frameworks that maintain a virtual DOM tree, Reken operates on the live DOM. This simplicity streamlines the development process and reduces the complexity of managing virtual DOMs.

1.2.3 Efficient DOM Updates

Reken updates only the parts of the DOM that need to change, minimizing the performance impact of dynamic updates and providing a responsive user experience.

1.2.4 No Tooling Required

Reken doesn't rely on complex build tools or transpilers. You can add Reken to your project with a simple script tag, making it accessible to a broad range of developers without additional tooling.

1.2.5 HTML Compliant

Reken-generated HTML remains fully compliant with standard HTML specifications, ensuring that your web pages are both standards-compliant and accessible.

1.3 Who Should Use Reken?

Reken is an excellent choice for a variety of web developers, including:

1.3.1 HTML Page Developers

If you primarily work with HTML and want to add dynamic behavior to your web pages without learning complex JavaScript frameworks, Reken is a perfect fit.

1.3.2 UX Designers

UX designers who want to bring their UI mockups to life and create interactive prototypes can leverage Reken's simplicity and efficiency.

1.3.3 Developers Building Prototypes

For quick prototyping and minimal viable product (MVP) development, Reken provides a straightforward solution to add interactivity without the need for extensive coding.

1.3.4 Web App Builders

Developers building lightweight web applications can benefit from Reken's performance and ease of use, especially when simplicity and efficiency are paramount.

1.4 Getting Started

The best way to start using Reken is by adding it to your web project and exploring the various Reken attributes that enable dynamic web page development. In Chapter 2, we'll cover the installation process in detail, allowing you to start using Reken in your projects quickly.

Before you dive into installation, it's essential to understand the core concepts of Reken and the attributes that power dynamic content and behavior. These will be discussed in Chapter 3.

In the next chapters, we will explore each Reken attribute in detail and learn how to leverage them for dynamic web development. You'll also gain insights into advanced features, such as creating reusable components and routing with Reken.

All the source code for the examples used in this handbook are available as live demos.

You can also download the demos as a zip file to your computer.

The samples are organized by chapter and are named after the sections they are presented in.

Let's get started with installing Reken and exploring its attributes in the following chapters.