October 2012

Backbone.js Singleton

Convert any Backbone.js class into a singleton by adding to it’s inheritance.

Ever wanna have a backbone singleton class? Allowing you to access a classes instance from anywhere without having to pass around a handle to an instance. This strategy could really be used for anything, but I find it most useful with retrieving a handle to a Backbone Router.

The additional backbone class

Backbone.Singleton = {
  getInstance: function () {
    if (this._instance === undefined) {
      this._instance = new this();
    return this._instance;

Example with a Backbone.Router

Underscore (what Backbone is built on top of) allows you to _.extend multiple classes, so just add the singleton to your class’s inheritance.

TestRouter = function(){};
_.extend(TestRouter, Backbone.Router);
// extend Backbone.Singleton
_.extend(TestRouter, Backbone.Singleton);
// access your router from anywhere!!
// just make sure not to call new,
// only use .getInstance()
var inst = TestRouter.getInstance();