Wire in data

So far we created isolated stateless components –great for Storybook, but ultimately not useful until we give them some data in our app.

This tutorial doesn’t focus on the particulars of building an app so we won’t dig into those details here. But we will take a moment to look at a common pattern for wiring in data with container components.

Container components

Our TaskList component as currently written is “presentational” (see this blog post) in that it doesn’t talk to anything external to its own implementation. To get data into it, we need a “container”.

This example uses Vuex, Vue's default data management library, to build a simple data model for our app. However, the pattern used here applies just as well to other data management libraries like Apollo and MobX.

First, install vuex with

yarn add vuex

Then we’ll construct a simple Vuex store that responds to actions that change the state of tasks, in a file called src/store.js (intentionally kept simple):

import Vue from 'vue';
import Vuex from 'vuex';

Vue.use(Vuex);

export default new Vuex.Store({
  state: {
    tasks: [
      { id: '1', title: 'Something', state: 'TASK_INBOX' },
      { id: '2', title: 'Something more', state: 'TASK_INBOX' },
      { id: '3', title: 'Something else', state: 'TASK_INBOX' },
      { id: '4', title: 'Something again', state: 'TASK_INBOX' },
    ],
  },
  mutations: {
    ARCHIVE_TASK(state, id) {
      state.tasks.find(task => task.id === id).state = 'TASK_ARCHIVED';
    },
    PIN_TASK(state, id) {
      state.tasks.find(task => task.id === id).state = 'TASK_PINNED';
    },
  },
  actions: {
    archiveTask({ commit }, id) {
      commit('ARCHIVE_TASK', id);
    },
    pinTask({ commit }, id) {
      commit('PIN_TASK', id);
    },
  },
});

In our top-level app component (src/App.vue) we can wire the store into our component heirarchy failry easily:

<template>
  <div id="app">
    <task-list/>
  </div>
</template>

<script>
import store from "./store";
import TaskList from "./containers/TaskList.vue";
import "../src/index.css";

export default {
  name: "app",
  store,
  components: {
    TaskList
  }
};
</script>

Then we'll update our TaskList to read data out of the store. First let's move our existing presentational version to the file src/components/PureTaskList.vue (renaming the component to pure-task-list), and wrap it with a container.

In src/containers/PureTaskList.vue:

/* This file moved from TaskList.vue */
<template>/* as before */

<script>
import Task from "@/components/Task";
export default {
  name: "pure-task-list",
  ...
}

In src/containers/TaskList.vue:

<template>
  <div>
    <pure-task-list :tasks="tasks"/>
  </div>
</template>

<script>
import PureTaskList from "@/components/PureTaskList";
import { mapState } from "vuex";

export default {
  name: "task-list",
  components: {
    PureTaskList
  },
  computed: {
    ...mapState(["tasks"])
  }
};
</script>

The reason to keep the presentational version of the TaskList separate is because it is easier to test and isolate. As it doesn't rely on the presence of a store it is much easier to deal with from a testing perspective. We can ensure our stories use the presentational version:

import { storiesOf } from '@storybook/vue';
import { task } from './Task.stories';

import PureTaskList from './PureTaskList';
import { methods } from './Task.stories';

export const defaultTaskList = [
  { ...task, id: '1', title: 'Task 1' },
  { ...task, id: '2', title: 'Task 2' },
  { ...task, id: '3', title: 'Task 3' },
  { ...task, id: '4', title: 'Task 4' },
  { ...task, id: '5', title: 'Task 5' },
  { ...task, id: '6', title: 'Task 6' },
];

export const withPinnedTasks = [
  ...defaultTaskList.slice(0, 5),
  { id: '6', title: 'Task 6 (pinned)', state: 'TASK_PINNED' },
];

const paddedList = () => {
  return {
    template: '<div style="padding: 3rem;"><story/></div>',
  };
};

storiesOf('PureTaskList', module)
  .addDecorator(paddedList)
  .add('default', () => ({
    components: { PureTaskList },
    template: `<pure-task-list :tasks="tasks" @archiveTask="onArchiveTask" @pinTask="onPinTask"/>`,
    data: () => ({
      tasks: defaultTaskList,
    }),
    methods,
  }))
  .add('withPinnedTasks', () => ({
    components: { PureTaskList },
    template: `<pure-task-list :tasks="tasks" @archiveTask="onArchiveTask" @pinTask="onPinTask"/>`,
    data: () => ({
      tasks: withPinnedTasks,
    }),
    methods,
  }))
  .add('loading', () => ({
    components: { PureTaskList },
    template: `<pure-task-list loading @archiveTask="onArchiveTask" @pinTask="onPinTask"/>`,
    methods,
  }))
  .add('empty', () => ({
    components: { PureTaskList },
    template: `<pure-task-list  @archiveTask="onArchiveTask" @pinTask="onPinTask"/>`,
    methods,
  }));

Similarly, we need to use PureTaskList in our Jest test:

import Vue from 'vue';
import PureTaskList from '../../src/components/PureTaskList.vue';
import { withPinnedTasks } from '../../src/components/PureTaskList.stories';

it('renders pinned tasks at the start of the list', () => {
  const Constructor = Vue.extend(PureTaskList);
  const vm = new Constructor({
    propsData: { tasks: withPinnedTasks },
  }).$mount();
  const lastTaskInput = vm.$el.querySelector('.list-item:nth-child(1).TASK_PINNED');

  // We expect the pinned task to be rendered first, not at the end
  expect(lastTaskInput).not.toBe(null);
});
Keep your code in sync with this chapter. View 28bc240 on GitHub.
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