[Podcast] Should You Build a Single Page Application?

The first episode of Ship It, Rocket’s podcast, dropped last fall and a we're happy to know that some of you have been streaming it ever since. It’s just strange that we haven’t talked about it here on our blog before…or maybe it isn’t.

This is Rocket Insights, after all, and we don’t do anything by the book.

That’s why we’re excited to begin sharing Ship It episodes here, starting (logically) with the sixth episode.

Episode 6: Should you build a Single Page Application?

In this episode of Ship It, we’re talking Single Page Applications (SPA’s). They've been all the rage for the past 10-15 years, and for good reason - they enable the rich user experiences that people everywhere have come to expect.  

SPA's allow software developers to control when the browser pulls data from a server and also to have fine grained control over how a page behaves using Javascript. Back in the old days, most web apps used Server Side Rendering (SSR). This meant that the process of pulling data had to happen on a server before it went to the browser, creating a pesky page refresh that interrupted user experiences. Because SPA’s provide developers with extra controls over when a browser pulls data, page refresh isn’t an issue and consequently results in a better user experience.

SPA's are great, but in this episode we consider if it's possible to have too much of a good thing. In the words of one of our hosts, “SPA’s are a hammer, and now everything is a nail.”

SPA’s don’t come without sacrifice. We break down some of their flaws and wonder aloud if SPA's are really all they’re cracked up to be. Are there ways that SPA’s do more harm than good when it comes to user experiences? Are there any circumstances in which you should opt for SSR pages? Which is ultimately better?

Tune in to the podcast here or find it on Spotify or Apple Podcasts!