Subtle difference between map and pluck RxJS operators that you should know
Explanation in details about how map and pluck work, and then figuring out main difference between two operators
Do you think the following code snippet will give the same result?
Well, the answer is: not really. Let’s take a closer look to see the subtle difference.
How map operator works
According to the official documentation, here’s what map operator does
Applies a given project function to each value emitted by the source Observable, and emits the resulting values as an Observable.
But that’s not the full picture. What if an error in projection function occurs? When I deep dive into the implementation of map operator, here’s what I figured out.
You can see from the above implementation, if an error occurs in projection function,
map will emit an error notification and your output stream will hang on.
How pluck operator works
Here’s what pluck does from the official docs
Maps each source value (an object) to its specified nested property.
When I read this line, there’s a question popping out in my mind, what if the nested property does not exist in object?
And here’s the answer when I consult the source code of pluck operator
As you can see, pluck operator calls map operator behind the scene, and passes the
plucker as projection function. Let's see what does
So, from the above code, we can see that pluck operator will get the nested value from an object based on the property list you provided. For example, you call
pluck('employee', 'address', 'houseNumber') , it will try to get the value at
object.employee.address.houseNumber, with the main difference is that it ensures null safe.
If there’s no value inside nested object, it will return
undefined, and your stream will continue to the next emitted value, rather than throwing an error and stop like map does. And this is the main difference between map and pluck operator.
Let me give you a concrete example to recap. Suppose I have the following input data
And I have two stream of data
And here’s the visualization of
If I change the
streamWithMap like this, the result will be the same as when I use pluck
Throughout the article, I have explained in details what’s the main difference between map and pluck operators in RxJS by deep diving into the implementation. I also give an example and marble diagram to illustrate this difference.
I hope you learned something new from the blog. Thanks for reading.