1.0.14 • Public • Published

jellyemitter Build Status

A generic event emitter that doesn't totally suck.


npm install --save jellyemitter


var JellyEmitter = require('jellyemitter')
var emitter = new JellyEmitter
emitter.on('foo', function () {console.log('foo!')})
emitter.emit('foo') // => "foo!"

How is this different from the Node.js EventEmitter?

  • All events are treated equally ("error", "newListener", and "removeListener" are not special)
  • No intrusive inspection with listenerCount() or listeners()
  • No max listeners warning (annoying and useless)
  • Only 704 bytes (minified and gzipped)

Other than that, it's basically the same. You get emit, on, once, addListener, and removeListener.

Design details

There's no removeAllListeners()

Okay I lied. You can do _removeAllListeners([eventName]) (underscored), but you should only do that under one of two conditions:

  • You are an API developer and you really know what you're doing
  • You are an API consumer and you really know what you're doing, and you know your code is the only code to touch that event emitter

I underscored this method because of how dangerous it is. If you don't understand why it's dangerous, you probably shouldn't be using it.


When you inherit from JellyEmitter, you don't have to call the JellyEmitter constructor. Inheriting the prototype is enough.


JellyEmitter takes advantage of smart V8 optimizations, just like EventEmitter. In most cases you'll find it performs even faster than EventEmitter.

Browser Support

  • Chrome 5+
  • Firefox 4+
  • Safari 5+
  • Opera 11.6+
  • Internet Explorer 9+

Super-Secret Trick (for API developers)

One cool thing you can do with JellyEmitter, but not EventEmitter, is the ability to wrap your event listeners in closures, but still allow the listener to be removed with the inner (unwrapped) function.


var original = function () {...};
var wrapper = function () {
    return original.apply(this, arguments)

wrapper.originalListener = original;
emitter.on('foo', wrapper);

// Then you can do this...
emitter.removeListener('foo', original)

If you give an event listener the .originalListener property, that listener can only be removed by referencing the value of .originalListener, and not by referencing the function that was actually registered.

This is useful for API developers who wish to give custom functionality to some (or all) events. It allows the API consumer to still have the power to remove their listeners, even though they were wrapped by the API developer.


When you use the .originalListener property on a wrapped function, JellyEmitter can no longer disinguish between the wrapped function and the original. This means, if you add both the original and the wrapped listener to the JellyEmitter, a call to .removeListener(eventName, original) will just remove the first version that was added, regardless of which version you intended to remove. Therefore, if you add a wrapped listener, you should never allow the unwrapped version to be added (to the same event). You should also never add the same function wrapped in two different ways (to the same event).

In short, when you use the .originalListener property, you are saying "this outer function is totally representing the original, and no other listener will do such—not even the original—unless it is a clone of this outer function".

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npm i jellyemitter

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