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Legacy tools linger

Last week, I wrote about the rise and fall of JS frameworks, and what I’m calling the transitional web.

We’re at the start of another wave of change in our industry, where old trends and best practices give way to something new…

I believe that a lot of the tools we’re seeing today are transitional tools… that will help transition us from big JS libraries to platform native features.

One thing I didn’t mention in the article is that just because technologies and best practices change doesn’t mean that old legacy tools just go away.

Nearly all of jQuery’s features were replaced by browser-native methods and APIs. Then, Angular, Vue, and React showed up and radically changed how many people build UIs.

And yet, lots of people still use jQuery on new projects. Legacy projects build with it still have to be maintained.

I suspect we’ll see the same thing with Vue and React.

Long after the platform makes them obsolete, and long after new tools emerge to address the next big shift in the web, there will still be sites running on JS frameworks (and jQuery).

This is also why I think it’s important to be more thoughtful about what technologies we bet on and invest in. Those choices linger on long after we make them.