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Becoming a Web Developer in 2020

Author
Stefan Richi Stanislaus Software Engineer
September 21, 2020

Ever since the beginning of the Internet Era, Many websites have been built to serve different purposes of mankind. There are websites to buy things without even getting out of your rooms, websites to stream your favorite television shows, listen to your favorite music without even storing in your personal computer, get instant news updates, and the list goes on. 

So, I guess, when spending your precious time reading all the above information, perhaps you’re looking for a comprehensive guide to be one of the brilliant people who make this world a more convenient place via websites: Web developer.

Who is a Web Developer?

A web developer is a programmer who creates web-based applications that can be accessed through the internet. Websites would have specific functionalities and features and the Web developer is responsible to build those requirements using his programming skills.

Web Developers will be in charge of writing codes, Interfaces to creating complex structures.

Due to the complex nature of this job, the Web Developer job role has been divided into two main parts,

  • Front-end Developer
  • Back-end Developer.

web development

Web Developer as a Front-End Programmer.

The programmers who fall into this category will be responsible for producing HTML, CSS, and JAVASCRIPT. And you might wonder what these are, these are the programming languages which are used to develop the front end of the website and to respond to certain commands with these three languages the interface or the look of the web Application will be formed. Front-end Developers deal with all the visual stuff you see when you visit a web application and the interaction with it.

So, How to Become a Front-end Developer?

Mastering the fundamentals of web development is the only way to move forward. HTML, CSS, and Javascript are the core of front-end development. Hence it’s very important to get them right.

HTML stands for HyperText Markup Language. HTML is used to build Website Structure and Content. This will help to put headers, footers, and the displays of images, texts, boxes and etc. 

Things To Know in HTML,

  • Basic Elements and Tags.
  • Forms and Form Validations.
  • HTML Semantic.
  • HTML layouts rules.

CSS stands for Cascading Style Sheets. CSS is used to control the presentation, formatting, and layout of the web application. It helps to get the look and feel of the web application.

Things To Know in CSS,

  • Basic CSS.
  • CSS Flexbox and CSS grids.
  • Media Queries.

After mastering CSS, You can master the CSS preprocessors Such as Sass or Less which can extend the abilities of CSS, Like Declaring Variables, Nesting, etc. inside CSS,

And CSS frameworks such as Bootstrap, Semantic UI which are libraries of ready-made HTML elements with CSS styling which help the speed of designing and consistency.

JavaScript is a logic-based programming language that can be used to modify website content and make it behave in different ways in response to a user’s actions. In short, it can be used to control the behavior of different elements on the web application.

Things To Know in Javascript,

  • Syntax and Basic Javascript.
  • Data Types.
  • DOM Manipulation.
  • Regular Expressions.
  • AJAX and Fetch API
  • jQuery
  • ES6, ES7
  • Basic Data structures and Algorithms

After Mastering all the core concepts of Front-end Development, You can jump into Javascript front-end Frameworks. JavaScript framework is an application framework written in JavaScript where the programmers can manipulate the functions and use them for their convenience. There are many JS front-end frameworks such as React Js, Angular Js, Vue Js and etc. 

Web Developer as a Back-End Programmer.

The Back-end of the web application handles all the behind the scenes of web applications.

The back-end is responsible for most of the functionalists, data storage, database connections, and overall power of the application.

 Instead of creating Interfaces and interaction flows the  Back-end or Server Side Developer is responsible for,

  • Use back-end programming languages to create business logic so that the website could run properly.
  • Optimize websites’ speed and efficiency.
  • Make sure users’ data and service requests through the front-end system are delivered well.
  • Create and maintain core databases, and at the same time, build data storage solutions with databases.

In Short, Back-end Developer is responsible for all the works regarding Data, Security, Logic, database and etc.

web development 2

So, How to become a Back-end Developer?

First things first, it’s always about programming languages. There are many server-side programming languages to work with but as the experts suggest a beginner should only focus on one or two languages.

Things To Know as a Back-End Developer,

  • Server-Side Programming Languages. Ex:
    • PHP
    • Node Js
    • Go lang
    • Python
    • Java
    • Ruby
  • Database
    • Relational Database. Ex:
      • Mysql
      • PostgreSQL
      • Oracle
    • NoSql Database. Ex:
      • MongoDB
      • Firebase
      • CouchDB
  • SQL
  • Authentication
    • OAuth
    • JWT
    • Token Authentication
  • REST & SOAP APIS
  • GIT Version Controlling.
  • Hashing Algorithms
  • Server-Side Rendering.

Besides a programming language, a back-end developer should be familiar with database and query languages.

SQL is a standard language for storing, manipulating, and retrieving data in databases.

Last but not least, version control tools are needed more than ever in modern web development. And GIT is the most popular version control in modern web development. 

Real-life projects generally have multiple developers working in parallel. So a version control system like Git is needed to ensure there are no code conflicts between the developers. Additionally, the requirements in such projects change often. So a version control system allows developers to revert and go back to an older version of the code.

Finally, sometimes several projects which are being run in parallel involve the same codebase. In such a case, the concept of branching in Git is very important. Knowing Git will benefit both Front-end and Back- End Development. 

If you perceive your career in development, check out this guide which will prepare you to land a job as a web developer.

Author
Stefan Richi Stanislaus Software Engineer

Stefan is an undergraduate in Information Technology from the University of Colombo School of Computing (External) who is currently working as a Back-end Developer at Konekt. Stefan is specialized in Java, JavaScript, PHP, Node JS, React JS, MYSQL and Docker.

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