What is Gatsby?
Who uses Gatsby?
Why developers like Gatsby?
Here are some stack decisions, common use cases and reviews by companies and developers who chose Gatsby in their tech stack.
I was building a personal project that I needed to store items in a real time database. I am more comfortable with my Frontend skills than my backend so I didn't want to spend time building out anything in Ruby or Go.
I stumbled on Firebase by #Google, and it was really all I needed. It had realtime data, an area for storing file uploads and best of all for the amount of data I needed it was free!
I built out my application using tools I was familiar with, React for the framework, Redux.js to manage my state across components, and styled-components for the styling.
Now as this was a project I was just working on in my free time for fun I didn't really want to pay for hosting. I did some research and I found Netlify. I had actually seen them at #ReactRally the year before and deployed a Gatsby site to Netlify already.
Netlify was very easy to setup and link to my GitHub account you select a repo and pretty much with very little configuration you have a live site that will deploy every time you push to master.
With the selection of these tools I was able to build out my application, connect it to a realtime database, and deploy to a live environment all with $0 spent.
If you're looking to build out a small app I suggest giving these tools a go as you can get your idea out into the real world for absolutely no cost.
A few months ago we decided to move our whole static website (www.algolia.com) to a new stack. At the time we were using a website generator called Middleman, written in Ruby. As a team of only front-end developers we didn't feel very comfortable with the language itself, and the time it took to build was not satisfying. We decided to move to Gatsby to take advantage of its use of React , as well as its incredibly high performances in terms of build and page rendering.
Since 2011 our frontend was in Django monolith. However, in 2016 we decide to separate #Frontend from Django for independent development and created the custom isomorphic app based on Node.js and React. Now we realized that not need all abilities of the server, and it is sufficient to generate a static site. Gatsby is suitable for our purposes. We can generate HTML from markdown and React views very simply. So, we are updating our frontend to Gatsby now, and maybe we will use Netlify for deployment soon. This will speed up the delivery of new features to production.
The power of SSR React and then hydrating it client-side to add interactivity and App-like feel is what makes Gatsby powerful.
It comes with a ton of plugins, that are mind-boggling: Image Processing, GraphQL, Node.js, and so much more. This is thanks to a great ecosystem, a great user-base and the revolutionary Community work, which led to the Gatsby repo to be one of the most committed to, out there.
We recently needed to rebuild our documentation site, currently built using Jekyll hosted on GitHub Pages. We wanted to update the content and refresh the style to make it easier to find answers.
We considered hosted services that could accept our markdown content, like ReadMe.io and Read the Docs, however both seemed expensive for essentially hosting the same platform we already had for free.
I also looked at the Gatsby Static Site generator to modernize Jekyll. I don't think this is a fit, as our documentation is relatively simple and relies heavily on Markdown. Jekyll excels at Markdown, while Gatsby seemed to struggle with it.
I use Gatsby because it is the quickest way to mock out a project. For websites its the best thing out there. The failings of Gatsby are in web applications that have a great many items being moved in and out of the application all the time.