Should I Use and Why Should I Use It?

Drew Barontini

There are over one million packages indexed on NPM, the most popular package registry for JavaScript packages. While it's an indispensable resource for developers building applications — offering efficiency, convenience, and reliability — it's important to evaluate the impact of using any package in your project.

That's where Should I Use? comes in.

Should I Use? is a tool to help developers and product owners evaluate JavaScript packages through a baseline of criteria:

This criteria is the baseline we use at Differential — and the one we built into Should I Use? — but it's just that: a baseline. Are you okay with using pre-v1 packages? Go for it! Use your discretion when evaluating packages. There are no hard-and-fast rules, but it’s important to work from a baseline to help in the evaluation process.

While the primary goal of Should I Use? is to help developers and product owners evaluate JavaScript packages, we hope to draw attention to open-source packages in need of contributions. Is the package pre-v1 and in need of some support? Are there only a few contributors with several open issues? Maybe you're a developer who can help out! Open-source software is only as strong as the community behind it.

We hope this tool helps the ever-expanding JavaScript ecosystem to continue growing, improving, and leveraging open-source solutions to real-world problems. Let us know what you think! You can contact us at hello@differential.com.