All you wanted to know about web development (but was to afraid to ask)

Yesterday a question was asked on a Facebook developer forum which was basically this:


There are a million solutions for the web today. What I'm wondering is: what's the word? What should I know and keep track of? [...] Is there any kind of industry standard? [...] I guess jQuery is sort of a standard and something every web developer should learn?


I would advice against using jQuery. While DOM manipulation is the way to go for extremely simple interactivity, it's also a powerful gateway drug into heavy spaghetti. Hottest on the client side right now are Angular with its challenger Ember and the up-and-coming Aurelia in the full stack ring corner, and React in the view centric one, backed by the Flux architecture.

On the server side, Node.js has ruled the hipster universe for quite a while and has become so popular that the original hipsters are leaving for languages like Go. Rails continues to deliver but has moved from hot to Zen. Python is still always there for those once chose it instead of Ruby (but who never can explain quite why).

Java is as ice cold as you would expect for a language that peaked just before the millennium. And by cold I mean, off course, gigantic and highly successful (but without ever getting laid). It is, however, insanely cool for everyone under the age of 10 since it was the language used by Notch to create Minecraft.

As uncool as Java is, the JVM is propotionally hot, tempting developers with languages like Scala, Clojure and Grails. The not quite as known .Net contender, the CLR, is also gaining attention. But it is .Net itself that is the real star of the show with complete open sourcing of the stack and abandoning of windows-as-a-required-dependency as the main headlines. Also, thanks to Xamarin, C# is gearing up to become the lingua franca of the mobile space.

Lingua franca brings us back to JavaScript, which is no longer the most hated programming language in the world (that's PHP now), but instead the most loved. It is even dubbed the assembler of the web to which we com- and transpile from TypeScript, CoffeeScript, ClojureScript, DogeScript and pretty much anything that can sustain the suffix "Script".

Also: Servers are out and Cloud is in. But if you refer to "the cloud", your out (like IDG). You shouldn't even use virtual servers any more - you want containers. And you should be using document databases, graph databases, key/value stores, Lucene, big table, Hadoop and pretty much anything except an RDBMS (unless you're fckn Pro in which case you use Postgres).

But industry standard? No.

PS. Don't forget nginx! And HTTP1.1 is out as well since the spec. for HTTP2.0 is finalized (so you need to hurry up and become a pro in concatenating scripts and images because pretty soon you ain't gonna need it).


Johan Öbrink

Started programming on my VIC 20 in 1982. Programmed JavaScript, Java, ActionScript, C# and then some. Love TDD, XP and agile development. Enjoy talking (a lot), building drones and playing with LEGO.

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