How did Front End Programming Evolve – Should I do The Job?

In this blog post, I will explain who the frontend developer is and what they actually do. So let’s get started …

What is front end development? What does a front end programmer do? What was the path that the front end developed from the beginning?

These are just some of the questions you can get right here, so stay tuned and check out what I’ve prepared for you this time!

Front End Beginnings:

It is generally accepted that the front end first appeared with the advent of HTML and CSS. So, it’s fair to say that the first front end developers emerged in the early 1990s. At that time, the profession was not popular, but with the development of the internet, HTML, and CSS, it began to become popular and gained a very important role in web programming. Initially, the front end developer didn’t do many things. His job was to create a static website and make it look good. The real breakthrough of this profession and better days for all “frontend developers” began on December 22, 1995. years. As a scripting language, JavaScript first appeared. Already then it was clear that front end developers would have a much bigger role to play in creating websites. With the advent of JavaScript, a new era for the entire front end has begun.

What exactly is the Front end?

Considering the power of the front end, it is my turn to explain what it really is before I move on and address the issues surrounding front end developers. The front end is a part of web programming whose code is executed on the client-side. This means that code written by front end developers is served to the browser of the visitor to that site and is executed there. Over time, this has actually changed a bit, but I’ll talk about that later.

The other part of the front end developer path

It hasn’t taken long since JavaScript was published to reach its full potential on the internet. Many people then used JavaScript in the ways they wanted, so at that time it was extremely important to formulate some basic rules and standard guidelines for use and its development. In 1997, ECMAScript first appeared as a standard for JavaScript. It was the beginning of a new era for front-end developers, still considered web designers at the time. ECMA worked a lot on JavaScript development, but the development path they had was very bumpy. Especially with version 4, which was supposed to be innovative at the time, and was abandoned for some political reasons. Due to complexity, this version was only updated in 2008. Some people even thought that this version could destroy the internet, so it was abandoned. In December 2009, ECMA released version 5, and thanks to that version, JavaScript has become what we know and see today.

We took a detour around the Front end, just because of the importance of JavaScript and ECMAScript, but it’s time to get back on the main road. In the early 2000s, JavaScript was very popular but still didn’t become an important part of front end developers. In 2006, one thing came up that changed everything when it came to front end developers (still web designers back then). That thing is jQuery, which is actually a cross-platform JavaScript library. That was the year a web designer found himself at a crossroads! He had two times: one to remain a designer and just design websites, the other to become a web developer – front end programmer. That’s how web designers split up, and so they become the front end developers we know today.

Now we, who took the number 2 route, through developers, still had a very difficult road ahead of us. With jQuery, we had a lot of new features that we could add to the website. Websites have stopped being static! We have given that dynamic component to websites. So, we have breathed life into websites. Therefore, front end developers have become developers, using JavaScript, HTML, and CSS, doing many more things than the website itself, however, that was still not enough. We wanted to do more! ECMAScript continues to grow, new versions have been released, but what made us an important part of the web programming process today was not just ECMAScript.

New Era – frameworks and preprocessors

In addition to ECMAScript and jQuery, it is the framework that has made a real boom in front end development. The year was 2010 and that year was marked by great influence from front end developers. The first frameworks we still use today appeared then. For example, it was Angular and Backbone. But why did they have such a big impact? Well, the difference between libraries and frameworks is how they are implemented. When you use a library, you simply call the predefined functions from it and that’s it. What the frameworks give you is much bigger than that. The Framework gives you a set of rules, guidelines, frameworks in which you can create applications and websites with many more options. It allows you to design the entire application, combine with libraries, manipulate the DOM, and more. So today we have many frameworks available, and we can choose which one to use when creating our application. There are many of them and the most popular is Angular, Vue and React.

In the new era, the late 2000s also saw a breakthrough for front-end developers when it comes to CSS. Since CSS has been good from the start, it is a bit unmanageable when it comes to development. Therefore, something had to be done to give developers the opportunity to do more with less code. That idea was the most important link in the chain that gave us CSS preprocessors. They give us the opportunity to do many things, they have functions in CSS, they have variables, whole pieces of code that are used in multiple places, they can divide the code into smaller parts. And what’s best in the whole story – when you’re done, they compile in plain CSS and work like Charm. So today, preprocessors are used all the time. We have the opportunity to choose which one to use. We have Stylus, Less and Sass, as well as many others, but these three are the most used.

Also, there is one more thing to mention when it comes to the new era, which is certainly the spread of HTML. Over the years, HTML has evolved a lot, so today we have HTML5 which is much more powerful than previous versions.

Front end developers today and new intersections:

Nowadays, front end developers do a lot, not to make the website look nice, but today they create the entire structure of the website and applications, make the site have its “life”. They work to create all possible user interactions with applications, manipulate the DOM at a much higher level, and more! They create a virtual DOM and manipulate the displayed content. They communicate with the server that is running the data, and if necessary, format the data or even create data independently of the server.

All this makes one Front End developer an extremely important part of the entire web programming process.

New Crossroads – Are you sure you were wondering what I meant when I said that ?! JavaScript has become so powerful that today the front end developer has made the leap from client-side to server-side. Today with JavaScript, we have the ability to create applications executed on the server so the question is – Will we remain front end developers or will we become back end developers?

JavaScript enabled all of this, but it also gave us Node.js. With JavaScript, we can now create REST structures …

It is our next intersection, and where the front end developer will go next only time will tell. Let’s see what the years to come have to offer us.

Front end developers, get tied up and let’s enjoy the ride together!

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