ShinyUiEditor: Out of Alpha

Shiny code in an app.R file and its equivalent look in the ShinyUiEditor, with arrows pointing to each of the different views

What’s New?


We’re excited to announce that ShinyUiEditor, a drag-and-drop interface for building Shiny apps, is officially out of its “alpha” stage. With a year of rigorous development and community feedback behind us, the editor is more robust, feature-rich, and ready for you to try it out!


The Journey So Far


ShinyUiEditor debuted at RStudioConf::2022, offering an initial glimpse and hands-on experience for adventurous users. Since then, we have made significant advancements, including the addition of server awareness functionality, and reducing friction for users when adding and updating input and outputs in their apps.


We have also introduced two new ways of running the UI editor. The first is a “static” mode that runs directly on the editor’s website with no need to install anything. This eliminates the need for installation and provides copy-and-pastable code for your app once you’re done. The second is a VS Code extension, allowing you to open the editor right next to your app’s script to instantly see updates.

To ensure apps created with the UI editor look great, we have added new bslib components like value boxes and cards. We have also focused on bug fixes, stability improvements, and overall performance enhancements.

  • Server Awareness: Easier handling of app inputs and outputs thanks to server-side logic recognition.
  • Flexible Access: In addition to the original R package function, you can now use ShinyUiEditor in two ways:
    • Static Mode: No installation needed—run it directly from our website and then copy the generated code for your app.
    • VS Code Extension: For VS Code users who want a more integrated experience using the editor.
  • Rich Components: New {bslib} elements like value boxes, cards, and sidebars have been added, making it easier to build great-looking apps.
  • Stability & Performance: Lots of bugs have been fixed and optimizations made resulting in the editor becoming more robust and performant.


The Road Ahead


Just because we’re out of alpha doesn’t mean we’re done adding features and generally improving the editor. Some upcoming features include exciting components like bslib::sidebar_layout() and bslib::accordion(), and a greater variety of templates to start from. Keep an eye on the GitHub repository and editor website to stay up-to-date with the latest.


We’re Listening


Feedback isn’t just appreciated—it’s crucial. Your insights and suggestions will greatly influence ShinyUiEditor’s continued development. Join the conversation through our Discord channel or raise an issue on our GitHub page.

We can’t wait to see what you build!