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Why Use Javascript? Benefits of Using Javascript for Business Website

by Ruslan Botnar

Web Development

21Apr

In this article

In ancient history, Brendan Eich had a language design, and in the modern world, JavaScript is a popular language used and used in many places. What made the language famous? Was this C-like syntax familiar to previous programmers? Does Netscape have enough control over the market to make people use it? Or is there some deeper reason that JavaScript is popular while others are not?

JavaScript has become mega-popular in recent years and has gained tremendous trust among developers. Why is he so cool? According to statistics, which include over 10 million frequently visited web pages on the Internet, about 95% of them use JavaScript to a greater or lesser extent. Naturally, such a popular technology is supported by all browsers: web browsers based on Chromium, Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Safari, etc. Learning this language will almost certainly provide your future with large amounts of finances, but you should get on the path to success now.

Recently, frameworks written in JavaScript have become actively used. Among them are Angular, React, Node, Express. Often, beginners skip learning the primary language and just use the functions built into the frameworks. A framework is a set that includes ready-made solutions to essential tasks that programmers face every day. The goal of frameworks is to simplify development, not replace the need for JavaScript knowledge.

 

So, who died and made JS king?

JS is widespread and in demand. You shouldn't take our word for it.

But no developers died to make it happen. The creation of any website is based on 3 pillars: HTML, CSS, and JavaScript. We can say that JavaScript is the best friend of HTML and CSS. How are they, friends? Simply put, HTML defines the layout of the site, CSS is responsible for the appearance, and JavaScript brings it all to life. But JavaScript hasn't always been such a famous and beloved language of programmers.

JavaScript is a prototype-based scripting language, also known as JS for short. JavaScript was initially created to make websites come alive. How do you understand this? It's effortless. The website quickly responds to any of your actions: pop-ups, buttons, when you click on them, some action takes place, etc. The code that is written in JS is called a script. But like any language, this programming language has its own history. Let's dive in there!

Not in a distant time and not in a faraway place, the Internet was just beginning to develop, and at this time, web browsers were needed to access it. Mosaic was the first to take the lead in this race because it was also the first browser to display images in a text line instead of displaying images in a separate window. By the way, yes, pretty cool for that time. At the time, a group of guys wanted to create an online gaming network for Nintendo, so they hired some of the Mosaic guys but ended up postponing the project. Being optimistic, they decided to use their resources in a different direction and started building a better web browser. They named their company Mosaic Communication and their first product was launched in 1994 under the name Mosaic Netscape. But they soon ran into some copyright issues and started calling it Netscape Navigator, but continued to call their internal browser "Mosaic Killer." Now for us, it is better known as Mozilla.

Netscape Navigator was a huge success and already occupied almost 75% of the entire browser market within the first 4 months of its release. It became the default browser in a short time. These guys ruled for a while, but soon they started competing with Microsoft. Microsoft was also rapidly developing and was a kind of threat to its project. And so they decided to collaborate with other guys who also had a big project. After meeting Brendan Eich, hired by Netscape, he was tasked with implementing the Scheme programming language, or something similar, into the Netscape browser.

But things didn't turn out as planned, and they ended up creating a scripting language that acts as a helper language for HTML. It was easy to use by web designers and programmers. It was developed under the name Mocha. Then it was renamed and officially called LiveScript ("Live" in translation "live"), but soon they decided to rename it again. The syntax was influenced by the C and Java languages, and since Java was a buzzword at the time and sounded good, they decided to use it.

Years later, a tough guy named Ryan is taking JavaScript to the next level. And now, JavaScript, which was usually only used for client-side scripting, can be used to write server-side code. This was the birth of nodejs. In other words, JavaScript can be used to develop not only the frontend part but also the backend. Around the same time, Google launched the Chromium project, in which they created an engine (V8) that could compile JavaScript directly to machine code before executing it. This has spawned a whole new community of developers who can now do full development just by knowing JavaScript alone.

JavaScript is incredibly versatile right now. Any browser, any computer device reads JavaScript code, and now even mobile applications. Moreover, since the sources are transmitted and executed in their original form, you can easily pull the script from some site, correct and take it for yourself. With JS, you can start small: with carousels, image slides, changing layouts, and button click responses. But with a lot of experience, you can create games, animated 2D and 3D graphics, complex database applications, and much more!

But why is it still on the top of the list?

To understand JavaScript's importance, you have to briefly recall two inextricably linked web programming technologies - CSS and HTML. CSS is responsible for displaying elements and styling them: placement, color, shape, appearance, etc. HTML allows you to create a page's structure and communicate information about the type of content to the browser. A metaphor will help understand both languages' essence: HTML is the skeleton, and CSS is the skin.

Both languages ​​allow you to create a beautiful site or a separate page, the appearance of which is limited only by your imagination. However, they do not provide the interactivity of the web page. Each time the button is clicked, the page must refresh for the changes to occur. 

JavaScript is the soul of a website that makes it interactive and lively. Requests sent via JS are processed regardless of the state of the page, and the results of the work can be immediately seen. For example, a user enters a login, JS sends it to the server and checks if there is the same nickname, then returns a response to the page in real-time. It is also crucial that JS is processed directly in the browser, creating a minimum load on the server (in contrast to PHP). There are a lot of uses for JS, which is why it is so popular.
 

How is JavaScript good for business?

The most famous use of JavaScript is, of course, web development. JS is often used when you need to add dynamism to the site or make a browser application, but if you wish, you can write a backend on it.

JavaScript is different:

  • Prototypical programming style (instead of classes and inheritance - prototypes and cloning);
  • Weak dynamic typing;
  • Functions as first-class objects (that is, they can be created right at runtime).

 

So, what areas did JavaScript find itself in?

 

  1. Dynamic web pages: Pop-up tips, moving pictures, falling snowflakes, and other animations - you can go to JS for all this. JS code is embedded in a web page, and when the user opens it, the script is executed right in the browser. It's almost impossible to create a complete website without JavaScript. Add knowledge of HTML, CSS, to JS, and you have a good set of beginner frontend developer skills. To complete the picture, you should master a couple of popular frameworks: React, Svelte, Vue.js.
  2. Web applications and games: JavaScript comes in handy here too. For example, Google Maps and the Gmail web client use JavaScript. And if you want to write a game - take JS, HTML5, one of the ready-made libraries (say, EaselJS or PixiJS) and create your browser, "match three," or whatever everyone is playing there now.
  3. Browser extensions: Since JavaScript executes code in the browser, it is an excellent choice for building browser extensions. Write your mail checker or, for example, an activity counter that will track how much time you spent at work and how much watching social networks.
  4. Server applications: Yes, you can quickly write a web server in JavaScript. But if in the browser JS has practically no competitors, then in the backend world, it has to compete with other languages: PHP, Python, and others. The main advantage of JavaScript in this battle is developing the frontend and backend in the same language. To write a backend in JavaScript, the Node.js engine is usually used - it allows you to execute JS code outside the browser.
  5. Mobile applications: is perhaps not the most popular but authentic use of JavaScript. Mobile apps are often developed in operating-system-specific languages ​​(Swift for iOS and Java / Kotlin for Android). JavaScript is good because it allows you to create cross-platform applications - for this, you can use the React Native, Ionic, or PhoneGap frameworks. Although JS has competitors here, too - for example, the Kotlin and Dart languages.
  6. Desktop: JavaScript has made its way to desktop applications as well. So, GitHub combined the Node.js mentioned above, the Chromium rendering engine, and developed the Electron framework on which you can write cross-platform desktop projects. Examples include GitHub Desktop, Visual Studio Code, Skype, WordPress Desktop. Electron has a counterpart, NW.js, mainly used to create desktop versions of websites and games.

Will JS be in demand in the future?

Technologies are gradually beginning to appear that, in some way, can replace JavaScript in browsers. However, it will be a long time before these technologies reach a sufficient development level and learn everything that JavaScript can do. Many companies have invested and are still investing a lot of money in developing engines that support JavaScript, which allows them to make the language more and more efficient and not lose its relevance. Therefore, JavaScript will still be in great demand soon.

It still takes a lot of effort to learn JavaScript, which is absolutely normal. But as long as the sites have users, there will be a demand for Front-end developers. Yes, cutting-edge companies are trying to come up with a replacement for JS. If this happens, it will not happen soon. And it won't be challenging to switch to a new language with knowledge of the old one. Usually, JavaScript works with the visible side of a website, but with the release of the Node.js framework for servers, programmers can do the back-end work. Thus, it is now possible to write quite heavy server-side code in JS, building the site's logic and behavior.

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