Unbinding $watch() Listeners In AngularJS
In AngularJS, you can watch for changes in your view-model by binding a listener to a particular statement (or function) using the $scope's $watch() method. You tell the $watch() method what to examine and AngularJS will invoke your listener whenever the item-under-scrutiny changes. In the vast majority of cases, the $watch() statement can be run with a set-and-forget mentality. But, in rare cases, you may only want to $watch() for a single change; or, only watch for changes up to a certain point. If that's the case, you can unbind a $watch() listener using the provided "deregistration" function.
When you invoke the $watch() method, to create a binding, AngularJS returns a "deregistration" function. This function can then be used to unbind your $watch() listener - all you have to do is invoke this returned function and your $watch() listener will be removed.
To see this in action, take a look at the following code. In this demo, we're watching the number of clicks that a link receives. And, if that number gets above 5, we're going to show a message; however, once the message is shown, we remove the listener as it will no longer have any value.
As you can see, we're storing the function reference returned by the $watch() statement; then, once the $watch() fires a few times, we invoke that stored method, unbinding the $watch() listener. If you watch the video, you can see that the console.log() statements stop as soon as the "deregistration" function is called.
Most of the time, you won't need to use this. In fact, I only found out about this feature yesterday when I ran into a situation in which I needed to unbind the $watch() listener. That said, it turns out it's rather easy, as long as you know it's there.
Want to use code from this post? Check out the license.
Cool! "Unwiring" things (like watches and jQuery plugins) has been one of the more difficult things for me to wrap my head around in Angular.
You can use deregistration with events too:
Oh very cool - I didn't realize you could do that with event bindings as well. As I've gotten into AngularJS, one thing that I have found very frustrating, with regards to unbinding, is that most jQuery plugins don't have any concept of a "destroy" or "teardown" method. So, I can bind to the "$destroy" event in my directives, but I can't always figure out how to gracefully destroy a jQuery plugin.
Most of the time, it's OK because the plugin bindings is local; however, if a jQuery plugin binds to the Document or Window (or something else that sticks around for a while), I can't clean it up!
can u please give example to ng-grid bind thru ajax enabled wcf services
I'm not sure what ngGrid is - it's not in the documentation. Must be some add-on or something; I'll have to look it up.
Do you know if Angular takes care of the listeners (deregister them) after a controller lifecycle?
What happens, for example, if a Controller (Ctrl1) registers a listener, you browse to another Controller and then you browse to the Ctrl1 again? would it deregister and then reregister the Ctrl1 listeners again?
Great post! I am now using this method as a way to run two functions synchronously (run function B only after function A has returned), although I'm not sure this is a good idea from a best-practice perspective. Any thoughts on doing this?
That is cool. I wonder how can you "rebind" the watcher again?
This is very good but just want to know that can i bind it again !! what about the rebinding here ??
and be fast !!
so i can move further and save my lots of time in the surfing ! :P
I have a demo about how to rebind the $watcher.
Oi! First i was "what is this witchcraft!?" and then i watched the video and at 2:10 i found my answer :)
Thanks for the tip on very neat way to solve this.
Awesome, helped me out in an edge where I needed to do some one time initialization in a complex directive.
Thanks a lot! You saved me with this. I was about to get insane.
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