Just so you know: it really, really, really sucks that we're forced to use React

/start-of-rant
Is there a way to get a 5%-10% discount on the 25% reseller fee for those of us who don’t want to be forced to use React (for a myriad of reasons) and have to struggle to get ADG compliant because for some reason Atlassian apparently doesn’t have the resources (or is just to indecent) to provide the community with alternatives? And please don’t refer to the reduced UI pack, because it is really unusable.
/end-of-rant

Sorry guys, but this is just really frustrating. I want to spent my timing creating add-ons, not trying to figure out how to duplicate your CSS/HTML magic.

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I also wonder what Atlassian thinks about this: https://medium.com/@raulk/if-youre-a-startup-you-should-not-use-react-reflecting-on-the-bsd-patents-license-b049d4a67dd2

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I’m not looking to start a discussion on React. I know there has been some backlash over the Facebook licensing policy, but that’s not really my point.

My point is that I expect better from Atlassian than to say: it would be great if your add-on can be ADG compliant because we value the customer experience, oh by the way, now you need to spent time learning React because we’re not going to provide the HTML/CSS snippets you need to implement ADG3.

Remie, I’m with you on that.

In fact, when AtlasKit / ADG3 were announced at Connect Week in March, I asked a question: can you guys guarantee that, after a couple of years, you will not change the things again and make a newer fancier ADG4 with some other toolkit, just around the time most addons will finish migrating? You can guess the answer.

Well, it’s all good intentions I guess, to me the new interface does look nicer and more modern. I think it’d be healthy to assume that a better UI would attract more users both to the Atlassian products and the add-ons, so in a way this is like a good feature for an add-on, only we’re forced to implement it.

Agree. There should be a “plug and play” version of AtlasKit where you just include some css and js source into your page and insert AtlasKit’s elements into the page, similar to how AUI has worked in the past.

Adopting AtlasKit is a big pain if you already have a build pipeline for your code that doesn’t involve React.

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Having implemented AtlasKit (We’ve been using React for almost three years) it doesn’t have all the ADG 3 concepts yet and some components are limited compared to the design guidelines. In some areas we’ve found the reduced UI pack to better than AtlasKit.

Prehaps the real problem is neither AtlasKit or the UI pack are ready for primetime? If completed, would the UI pack be an alternative to Atlaskit?

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Thanks for raising this. The Atlaskit team is actively making Atlaskit much better -
updating components to match ADG 3 specs, more features, comprehensive component API. Stay tuned for those updates.

The reduced ui pack will continue to be smaller subset of adg components/styles. I would like to know what we could do to make it more useful within its scope.

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Given the scope of the reduced UI pack, I’m not sure if you will be able to do that. I would love to see ADG3 fully implemented in a html/css/javascript bundle without having to rely on a framework. Or, if you must, you can also consider supporting other frameworks as well (like VueJS). This would make it easier for developer to implement ADG3 and comply with the desire for unified styling.

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To add onto what @remie said. Consider what you’re replacing - AUI had a bunch of interactive items - Inline Dialogs, Select2, RestFulTable, Progress Indicator, etc ( Some of these are available through React (either through the fact that React does it or they were simply ported over).

The fact that these are gone means that vendors need to to reinvent the wheel from other sources and then retrofit things onto from other sources to be either be reduced-ui compatible AND to be Atlassian Connect compatible (the latter one being the bigger pain).

There has always been a “why don’t you support framework X? It’s more awesome than Y” with developers (been there done that - hated every minute of it). Atlassian just managed to get into that with just React support (yes - I know Reduced UI works everywhere but it doesn’t do everything).

I would just be happy with having some sort of cookbook of "here’s how you can do X,Y and Z without React.

Just my $0.02.

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I’m pretty satisfied with the direction ADG3 is going and the options available :slight_smile: . Here’s some thoughts:

I don’t think it’s feasible to offer an un-opinionated UI toolkit that works well with every option a developer might want once you start to include dynamic behaviour. AUI was also opinionated too: it’s coupled with jQuery, is stateful + uses direct DOM manipulation that React (and clones) don’t like.

@remie: Have you considered writing some ADG3 CSS overrides for AUI? Despite using React we chose this option for existing products for the short to medium term and have had great results – inception to shipped in 2 days. FWIW Bitbucket, Confluence and JIRA did this too. Happy to share more about that.

@jcheung: AtlasKit is my choice but I do think the reduced UI pack could be further improved by including more of the possible UI states AtlasKit offers as “dumb” HTML/CSS. That way if @remie or others want to use a different framework (Vue.js) or library (select2) while they’ll still need to make the components interactive (the cost of going against the grain) at least achieving the visual design is easier.

^^ This could better support the community-driven ecosystem of alternative options and help keep them visually consistent with ADG3/AtlasKit.

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Our experience matches @tim about CSS overrides.

We built our own React components using the AUI CSS 3 years ago and we tried using AtlasKit to replace them but just wasn’t up to the job. Using CSS overrides it took 5% of time to redesign 5 pages vs reimplementing one page using AtlasKit.

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@daniel / @remie Thanks. I hear the pain. I really wish I could help too but expanding our support footprint isn’t in the cards for us at the moment. I really like the cookbook and @tim’s “dumb” HTML/CSS ideas. I’ll bring it up internally.

@alan.parkinson I understand the lack of cost-benefit if you just want to update the visuals initially. But Atlaskit will evolve with the products moving forward - with new user interactions and patterns. The benefit of using Atlaskit would be to get those new things as the products upgrade them as well.

It also feels like there are multiple efforts in re-skinning AUI to be ADG3? Are you guys comfortable sharing the code / repo here?

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I would really be in favour of a community effort to expand on the reduced UI pack… or create a community version of AtlasKit for HTML/CSS/Javascript and/or other frameworks. Would it be possible for Atlassian to support such joint effort with the Marketplace Vendor community?

2 Likes

I haven’t got a repo for it and currently the code isn’t in an easy to share format. Also our implementation only covered the parts of AUI our app is using. However, for anyone getting started or considering overrides as a “temporary” solution Bitbucket’s implementation is a good reference to get you started:
https://d301sr5gafysq2.cloudfront.net/e17447e6d7b5/css/entry/adg3.css

1 Like