- What is Front-End development?
- Key Front-End programming languages
- Popular Front-End technologies to know in 2020
- The Roadmap for Front-End Developers
- The Future of Front-End Development
The internet is a crowded yet indispensable marketplace. With over 1.7 billion websites and 3.5 billion daily searches on Google, it is challenging yet vital to have an online presence that provides you ample visibility. Also, the human mind has an attention span of five seconds, and one needs to create traction in this short period. The degree of exclusivity and the ability to engage with audiences is directly proportional to a website’s volume and revenue. An immaculate front-end development plays a crucial role in achieving the desired results.
What Is Front-End Development?
Front-end development, also called ‘‘client-side development,’’ is the art of creating an interface of the software, an app, a website, or any digital product. “Creating” refers to two elements - design and programming. The former comprises design, content, and just about everything else on the display screen, and the latter includes structure and behavior to put the design to use. The entire process, cumulatively, is termed as front-end development.
The visual appeal and aesthetics of the layout, the user-friendly design, responsiveness, interactive sections, efficiency, speed, and advanced functionality of the page, are all facets of front-end development. However, creating this requires a plethora of tools to ease the process. While new technologies continue to streamline the process, the core programming languages have remained the same.
The basic foundation of the World Wide Web - HTML has been building the pages of the Web, mobile, and applications for the longest time.
- Its latest evolution HTML5, however, has been enabling developers to initiate some revolutionary creations with new syntactical features and a more massive stack of next-generation technologies.
- From building diverse, scalable, cross-platform, and compelling products to being mobile ready with speedy functioning on low powered devices amidst low connectivity, HTML5 makes the browsing experience more enjoyable, secure, and sustainable.
- It supports all major modern browsers, including Google Chrome, Internet Explorer, Firefox, Opera, and Safari, etc.
- No wonder the likes of Apple, Nike, Ikea, and many other Fortune 500 companies, are using the latest version of this mark-up language for enhanced reach, engagement and conversions results.
Adding life to your HTML creation is the primary language CSS, which is an integral part of the modern software development process.
- Its latest offering CSS3 is pushing the boundaries of your page by giving it the desired appearance and appeal, making it more robust, responsive, and scalable.
- Developers are fond of this language as it gives them greater control over the layout, allowing them to make precise customized changes.
- Also, CSS3 development ensures digital products are fast-loading, device and search engine-friendly, have higher bandwidth, and are easily accessible, and usable.
- It creates the perfect synergy between the manifestation and presentation of your site, with cross-browser compatibility.
Java Script (JS):
This object-oriented programming language is the icing on the cake.
- It is considered the default language of the Web, for it puts into perspective the outline created by HTML and CSS.
- The entire dynamic and interactive behavior of software, like on-screen motion, immersive interaction, and appealing user-engagement, is because of this scripting language.
- What makes it phenomenal is its extraordinary power of communicating with the server in the background with no interruption to the user interaction happening in the foreground, such as real-time updates without having to refresh or reload a page.
These programming languages are the backbone of our digital products. However, as technology evolves, so does the process of creating software. Everything is becoming elementary to save on time, money, and resources with the creation of frameworks and libraries. This means one does not have to code from scratch or write codes repeatedly. From designing, development, testing, and maintenance to fostering a progressive process and building increased interaction, developer communities, and software companies are building frameworks and libraries that resolve challenges and add versatility when designing complex projects. But, the number of front-end frameworks and libraries is exhaustive. They keep appearing and disappearing, making it all the more indispensable to be updated.
Here is a list of the top front-end technologies in 2020 that have earned a significant spot with their solid foundation and the ease with which they help create digital products. Their popularity and growth in the last year itself have been impressive and are expected to remain the same in the foreseeable future.
Popular Front-End Technologies to Know in 2020:
- Created and developed by Facebook and used by companies such as Instagram, Yahoo and BBC, among others, to build the best experience for their users.
- It renders consistent page performance rather than a full-page refresh, offers interactive visual effects, optimizes performance, and increases efficiency. It lends unparalleled ease to the process.
- With React JS, businesses, whether small, medium, or large, can build scalable projects irrespective of their complexity.
Sometimes size doesn’t matter; it’s all about efficiency and speed.
- It is an eclectic combination of the advantages offered by AngularJS and ReactJS, powered by HTML, and easily downloadable, beating many other bulky frameworks in the market.
- Companies like Buzzfeed, Grammarly, Alibaba, and Xiaomi, among others, leverage this high-performance framework to manage small, encapsulated parts of their applications.
- Its most unique attribute is that it’s designed from scratch. Therefore, developers can easily integrate it with numerous libraries or existing projects to further enhance their digital presence.
Developed and maintained by engineers at Google, this popular cutting-edge framework is in a nascent stage.
- Yet it is gaining traction owing to its up-to-date features that reduce the complexities of application development.
- Faster and modern browser support, mobility driven approach, evolutionary performance, and the ability to meet sophisticated business demands have been solving a multitude of development issues.
- Companies like Lego, YouTube, Upwork, and The Guardian have been leveraging the rich features of this UI framework to address the challenges of development.
- AngularJS’s vast ecosystem and extremely high-performance characteristics promote teamwork and quality assurance by eliminating overlapping of activities.
- Developers can quickly achieve great things if they learn to embrace this all-encompassing framework.
A notable trend this year is Flutter- one of the fastest-growing open-source frameworks.
- Flutter is a Software development kit built by Google to create beautiful, natively compiled applications for mobile, Web, and desktop. It is made from a single codebase, meaning no cookie cutter.
- Initially released for Android developers, it now has an iOs version to revolutionize the mobile world.
- With a straight forward setup, Flutter ensures full customization, incredibly fast rendering, full native performance, smooth navigation, and expressive and flexible designs. It is also amongst the first to offer ‘‘sub-second’’ reload time experience to users without losing hardware for iOS and Android.
- Companies like BMW, The New York Times, and Emaar, among others, have been creating mobile-first interactions and rich visualizations on their apps to delight customers in record time.
Bootstrap can be your go-to tool for developing a mobile-first project.
- Fascinating features about this framework are its responsive layout and 12-column grid system. This mechanism allows digital products to adjust seamlessly over any screen size without hampering the resolution.
- Lightweight, massive community support, simple integration, customizable page options, and cross-browser compatibility, make this technology developer-friendly.
- Companies like Spotify, Twitter, Intel and Walmart are augmenting their virtual presence by using Bootstrap.
Svelte 3 ( WEB APPS):
A radical lightweight new approach to building user interfaces with this JS library.
- It runs at build time to reduce unnecessary workload. That means, Svelte converts components into codes that surgically updates the DOM when the state of your app changes.
- Excellent performance and user experience and ambitious creations are some fascinating characteristics of this language.
- Companies like Noppo, Cloudless and Ship Shape are utilizing the advantages of this library to develop their projects in record time.
- TypeScript supports tools for any browser and any host on any OS. It is currently being developed on GitHub.
- 2444 companies reportedly use TypeScript in their tech stacks, which includes the likes of Slack, N26, Revolut.
The above-mentioned images are self-explanatory. They are a true reflection of the importance of new frameworks dominating the market. Image 1 represents how, over the last year, AngularJS has gained global prominence in the tech world with its advantages.
Conversely, Image2 depicts an exciting fact that nothing is ever constant. No one stack of technology can continually rule the market. So how do developers navigate amidst such varying leads and information? How can they keep themselves relevant without having to succumb to the rapidly changing landscape?
The Roadmap for a Front-End Developer:
If you are a front-end developer or aspiring to become one, you need to look at the bigger picture and decide on your focus area. Typically, a company requires you to possess a basic knowledge of the language with some design, UI skills, a strong foundation, and a relevant degree. This places you in the beginners or fresher category. But with an intensified competition, you must update and move into a more specific category.
With a focussed approach, keep a check on the tech stack to stay relevant, which involves understanding not just the languages, their strategy and techniques but also their libraries and frameworks for a deeper skillset.
Additionally, work on your social skills, because ‘‘social distancing’’ or ‘‘solitary refinement’’ will be outdated soon.
The Future of Front-End Development:
Front-end is poised for change. The tools, libraries, frameworks, operating systems and algorithms are constantly up for an upgrade and advancement with emerging new technologies. Hence, it is all the more vital to adapt to the changes and remain relevant. Learning or experimentation are ongoing processes.
It is critical to ruminate on how the online world has changed, and how alarmingly the number of mobile users is increasing. Industries, globally, are beginning to invest heavily in creating future-ready products based on continuous user feedback and experience. Customers, on the other hand, dependent on smart-phones and technology, are vying for real-time gratification, instantaneous results, and quick reactions. All this teaches us to have a more mobile-first approach. But what about tomorrow? Aren’t we already being powered by AI? Haven’t blockchain, cloud computing and Internet of Things (IoT) already paved their way into the market? All this and much more is changing the future of front-end and demand from the developers. Indeed, there couldn’t be a better time to become a coder and put your dynamic programmatic rigor to use. However, it is critical to boost your knowledge and stay updated. Companies need you now more than ever. After all, you know precisely how to make an impact online, leveraging the best framework possible.
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