What is Firebase Firestore ‘Reference’ Data type

In Firebase Firestore, the ‘Reference’ data type is a particular data type representing a reference to a specific document within the Firestore database. Instead of storing the actual data of the document, a Reference holds the path to the document, allowing your application to retrieve the document’s data when necessary.

For example, if you have a collection of users and a collection of posts, you can create a reference to a user document in a post document. This way, you can easily retrieve the user document when you retrieve the post document.

Using References is a way to create relationships between documents in a NoSQL database like Firestore. It allows you to organize your data more structured by creating links between related documents. This is particularly useful in situations where you want to avoid duplicating data or when you want to maintain a connection between two or more documents that may change over time.

To use a Reference in Firestore, you can create a DocumentReference object that points to a particular document. This object can perform actions like reading or updating the document’s data and listen to real-time updates.

Here’s an example of creating a DocumentReference in JavaScript:

const firebase = require('firebase/app');

// Initialize Firebase
const firebaseConfig = {
 // Your Firebase configuration goes here

const db = firebase.firestore();

// Creating a DocumentReference
const someDocumentRef = db.collection('your_collection_name')

You can then store this someDocumentRef in another document’s field as a Reference data type. This will allow you to efficiently access and manage related data without duplicating information across multiple documents.

That’s it.

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