Author - Neeti Kotia

Front End, Back End, and Full Stack-The Three Faces of Web Development

Front End, Back End, and Full Stack-The Three Faces of Web DevelopmentRollback a few years and you would find that web applications were little more than digital catalogs. For the most part, they were static and as they had fewer footfalls, the risk and repercussions for crashing websites also used to be low. Those days it used to common for a single person to design, develop, and even host their website! But as the scale and complexity grew, web development has gradually moved from a generalist to specialist approach- giving rise to separate domains of frontend, backend full stack development

But that isn’t the complete picture. If you have ever scrolled through job portals, you would rarely find job profiles named Backend Developer or Frontend developer. Instead, the developers are generally associated with the technology they work on rather than on which end is it applied. Further, the rise of languages like JavaScript has further complicated the matter by blurring the line between the two, something we would discuss later. To get a clear picture, let’s first probe each of them and then we will try and come up with a generalized conclusion.

Frontend development

As the name suggests, this part of development creates the face of web application- the part that users actively interact with. Every webpage is built using a markup language called HTML (currently HTML5) while CSS and JavaScript are used for design and integrating dynamic components. But as mentioned before, you would rarely find a job profile named frontend developer because they are generally called UI/UX designers.

As much of the application is built using ready-to-use components and templates, the task of these developers slants more on designing than development. Not just the aesthetics- which is a part of the interface but also the entire workflow- that constitutes user experience.

Backend development

The actual working of websites takes place behind the scenes. That is, when you as a user click “Buy” on any eCommerce website, it is the backend developers who make the purchase happen. Technologies like PHP, Python, NodeJS, among others, remain the most popular for backend development. And just like you don’t find “front-end developers”, you won’t find “backend developers” in job profiles. They are known by the technology they work upon like “PHP developer”, “NodeJS developer”, etc. The database expertise to remains a part of backend development.

Overall, all you need is a UI/UX developer and a PHP/Python/NodeJS developer to build any web application.

Full Stack development

Generally, developers who carry expertise on all parts of application development are referred to as full stack developers. In theory, that is quite simple to explain but as mentioned, web development technologies have evolved a lot over the years and things aren’t any more so easy to segregate.

The new web development space

With the advent of many tools and technologies, JavaScript, in particular, have a line between frontend and backend development has blurred. As mentioned, JavaScript remains a key component of frontend development but if you noticed, NodeJS- a backend platform, is also based on JavaScript. Similarly, there are many low-code tools that offer components with both GUI and backend functionality. So if a developer builds web applications with these new tools, are the front-end developers or the backend developers?

Overall as a general rule of thumb, we should be segregating these domains only for custom web application development and not all web development projects. In that case, our neatly defined categories hold true. Otherwise, it is more plausible to assume that full-stack developers have built the application.

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Want to Develop an App like Honk: Here are 4 Features That Must Be Added For Making an Uber like App for Towing

Want to Develop an App like Honk_ Here are 4 Features That Must Be Added For Making an Uber like App for TowingWhen it comes to long drives and traveling almost everyone gets a sense of enthusiasm and energetic spirit. Nothing wrong about it, but one thing that demands user attention here is, how to remain prepared enough to combat with the issues that arise at the roadside. Well, yes, they are obviously uninvited but being attentive and aware of the roadside assistance solutions can be a big savior in the scenario.

Problems such as tire damage, running out of fuel, sudden lockouts, losing on the keys, winch out and the mechanical issues might occur. Although the probability of occurring such problems is unconditional, what if someone gets struck with any of the issues.

Well, we have ample of mobile apps such as Honk, Urgent.ly, StrandD, etc. is standing out there for handling such dilemmas on the roadside. One of the biggest apps that gathered huge publicity in the niche out of the above there is “Honk”. The former app is being developed by Honk Technologies, a Los-Angeles based start-up. The app is linked to over 3500 roadside assistance partners and is gaining an immense about of visibility with its empowered roadside solutions.

Thus, if you liked the concept and is eager to invest in the mobile app development market, this post will take you to the right track targeting the tow truck app, Roadside Assistance Apps and towing app development.

See Related:

So, get in touch with the best and most powerful features that must be added to your roadside assistance app.

  • Find nearby assistance and services

This can be counted as the basic feature of your on-demand roadside assistance mobile app. The users must be able to find the nearby service providers and towing facilities for fixing the problems. Allow the users to schedule or to select the type of services they seek to use.

In case of the vehicle breakdown or in the cases of tire replacements or locking problems, the app must be able to connect them with the most convenient and nearby service station.

  • Geo Location

Under this feature, the user can track the real-time location of the service providers that have been assigned to them and the duration they might require to reach the required destination.

It helps in delivering a flawless user experience and at the same time proves a boon for the driver as well. The service provider can also determine the location of the car and the user, thus can make necessary provisions for reaching him out as soon as possible.

Furthermore, allow your users to call the driver in case of some urgency. This will add a good note to your app. Other than this, in-app chatting can also be integrated into the app for delivering an impeccable user experience.

  • Push Notification

This is a great way of keeping the user engaged and informed. Deliver the confirmation to them, once their request has been accepted. Updates regarding the new service providers added or the services that are provided nearby to their location can also be sent to the users.

Messages regarding the payment can also be delivered to keep the users aware of the transaction status.

  • Payment gateway integration

 uber payment

This is a very crucial feature that must be integrated if you planning to have an app like Honk. Payment gateways such as PayPal, Braintree etc. can be added into the app for making the transaction. Digital modes such as Credit card, Debit card, and net banking should also be integrated into the app for making the billing more transparent.

Conclusion

Roadside assistance apps are certainly new in the trend. They are referred to as Uber for towing services, because of their On-demand nature. The above blueprint of the features will make it simple for you to develop an app like Honk.

Therefore, just find the right app development agency for getting your app ideation deployed in the correct way and embark with the more innovative roadside app models for capturing a large user base.

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Migrating to Magento 2? Here are the Risks You Must be Aware of

Migrating to Magento 2Magento 2 is now almost three years old and despite the company pushing hard for businesses to migrate from Magento 1.x, there has been abysmal momentum till now. We’ll get into some of the reasons why businesses are so reluctant to move on to the next technology but it is worth noting at this point that as Magento 1.x reaches its end-of-life in 2019, they seem to have little choice but migrate. And while Magento has stepped in to alleviate any panic by announcing at least 18 months of additional support, the passive message it is sending is that it’s time businesses seriously start working on a migration plan.

After all, depending on the size of your business, the actual migration itself may take around 3-4 months and if you throw in the extra few weeks for prioritizing tasks, negotiating with Magento developers, and post-migration troubleshooting, the entire process would easily skew over six months.

Read Related: You Need to Know All About Magento 2

So what if you refuse to migrate?

Well, technically there is no compulsion for you migrate to Magento 2.x. It’s not like that other software that simply stops working unless you update them. But it has its implications. First of all, you would stop receiving security updates, thus making your platform not just vulnerable but the prime target for cyber-attacks. From active attacks on servers and websites to passive snooping, you will be essentially on your own. Then there will also be the gradual degradation in performance, spiraling into a mediocre if not bad user experience. At such point, the store essentially losses all its leverage of using a sophisticated platform like Magento. This should make it clear for any business that migrating to Magento 2.x is now a matter of when not if.

Why are businesses reluctant?

Upgrading an eCommerce store from Magento 1.x to Magento 2.x isn’t like updating your smartphone. It’s more like rebuilding your store with a new set of tools that comes with a whole lot of challenges:

Disruption

The first concern that most businesses have when they consider migration is the disruption that it would ensue into. Many of them have a perfectly fine store but migration would mean:

  • Building new themes from ground up
  • Building new extensions that aren’t supported in Magento 2
  • Discontinuity in business operations

Cost

Migrating from Magento 1.x to Magento 2.x isn’t just a matter and inconvenience but also comes with considerable overhead costs including:

Uncertainties

Along with the disruption and cost, migrating your well-running store to a new platform also involves some unforeseen risks which include:

  • Any change in indexing can cause problems in SEO with potential traffic and revenue loss.
  • Magento 2 is still a long way from being mature and there are still many stability related issues that will uncover only after you start using it.

So what should you do?

Knowing that you have to migrate your store one way or the other, there is no use waiting for the last moment. Plus given that almost all stores running on Magento will now move to migrate. The sooner you act, the more chances are that any top Magento development company would be available for your project.

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Why use NodeJS? The Transformative Web Development Technology

The rise of NodeJS can be summed up in a single statement- what PHP was in the last decade, NodeJS is today. For a detailed review, we’ll need to dig deeper.

Internet, since its inception, has come a long way both in terms of how users connect and the services they use. If we talk about connectivity, dial-up connections and privately managed servers have been replaced by broadband and cloud while a similar seismic shift can be observed in services. But until recently, one aspect largely remained untouched- how those services worked. The browser sends a request to the server, to which server responds and waits for another request. While this architecture worked well in the early days, it now poses a two-edged problem:

  • Clients have to wait for server response despite their fast connectivity
  • The server is highly underutilized given their huge multi-core processing power

NodeJS is popular and widely adopted primarily because it solves both of these problems. Plus the fact that it doesn’t cause any additional overhead by using an already popular language- JavaScript, makes it an appealing choice for even smaller projects that don’t necessarily face those problems.

How NodeJS works?

Technically speaking, NodeJS works in a non-blocking I/O mode. If that sounds cryptic, consider this- the browser requests the server, the server while processing that request, doesn’t block other connections and keeps listening for any other requests. The first request when processed is sent back to the browser. This not only reduces the latency for many clients but also maximizes server utility.

Now add to this the fact that NodeJS bridges the gap between the server and client-side programming languages, thus drastically reducing the rendering time for the browser, you’ll get the full picture of how NodeJS makes web applications faster and scalable.

NodeJS at its Best

While these capabilities serve basically all categories of web applications, there are some cases where it is instrumental in enabling those services.

Real-time applications

Services that need to work with data in real-time have minimal tolerance for latency and as discussed above, NodeJS excels in this regard. The fact that applications like Uber and PayPal use NodeJS at their backend is a testimony to that claim.

Streaming application

Owing to its non-blocking mode with minimal rending, NodeJS enables applications to offer seamless streaming experience. If you ever used Netflix, you are already familiar with its underlying power and efficiency.

Single-page applications

Single page apps are the new trend in web development due to its better user experience. And because such applications rely heavily on client-side, the minimal rendering ensured by NodeJS makes it a good fit for building such apps.

Dashboard

NodeJS is capable of tracking and visualizing user action on an application and thus makes an excellent option for creating dashboards.

Now if we sum it all up, we are sure you’ll get a definite answer to the question we begun with- why use NodeJS?

  • It’s easy to learn
  • There are tons of third-party tools for JS, that make a highly productive development environment
  • It offers cross-platform support
  • Its use of Google's V8 engine ensures high performance
  • Excellent for modern apps like chatting and streaming
  • Open source tag and corporate backing guarantees consistent improvement
  • Cheap development and hosting solutions

Overall, if you wish to build a robust, scalable web application, just hire a NodeJS developer and you won’t possibly regret your choice. In fact, even the long-standing web development companies who have experience working with all technologies are resorting to NodeJS as their goto technology for new projects.

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Google’s Flutter is The New Tool For Building Sophisticated Mobile Apps

Google’s Flutter is The New Tool For Building Sophisticated Mobile Apps

The debate of hybrid vs native applications has been around for a really long time- dating even before Android and iOS achieved a virtual duopoly and Symbian, Blackberry, among others were considered an essential mobile platform. But now that all those platforms are lost in oblivion and there are only two platforms to bridge (Android and iOS), hybrid apps are finally starting to take lead and is widely considered to be the future of mobile apps.

For that reason, a wide range of sophisticated hybrid app development tools like Xamarin, React Native, among which Flutter are available. A product of Google, Flutter is a lot like those other tools in terms of functionality but is quite different in terms of procedure. Now before we get further into specifics, there are two key concepts of Flutter that must be introduced:

Drawing

Using Flutter, developers can directly create UI on canvas of both iOS and Android- the Dart code of which is then compiled to machine code. This ensures a smooth UI and transition- a feature most of the hybrid frameworks lack.

Bridge

While it can work independently, it can also source and export components to the native platforms of both iOS and Android SDKs. This makes the code highly reusable and enables it to use features beyond its core SDK.

What’s special about Flutter

When a developer actually gets down to building an app, there are three broad considerations:

The Initial Barrier

This includes the aspects like familiarity with the language and corresponding process, creating packages, managing states and all the boilerplate code before the actual production phase begins. Flutter simply excels in this regard except for one problem. When building Android apps or even iOS apps for that matter with Flutter, there are no packages or layouts to be created, no states to be managed, and no boilerplate code to insert. The developers can start real productive work right from the start by creating stateless widgets- to which, parameters can be later added as the application takes shape.

The one problem is that it uses a new language- Dart, which nobody is familiar with! But given that it loosely resembles C, that gap is expected to disappear soon.

Ease Of Development

Once actual development begins, the next consideration is the simplicity and includes factors like modularity, available components, and more. Flutter is reasonably good in this regard as well- particularly owing to its Bridge that helps it source components from native SDKs and gives a major boost to code reusability and by extension, the speed of development.

Cost Of Development

This includes not only the financial costs involved in hiring Android app developers but also the cost of the application itself including factors like the size and speed of app, the time of development, and even the cost of components. As Flutter is an open source tool, there are no additional financial costs involved while in terms of app costs; applications developed in Flutter are known to have fewer lines of codes- translating into better performance and maintenance.

Now given all these benefits, Flutter is definitely a feasible option but to count it among the best, you would need to evaluate it not in a vacuum but keeping competition in mind. And if you look at the current market trends, React Native is considered the best hybrid app development platform. The point being, when we pitch Flutter vs React Native, the one that comes out on the top will eventually rule the hybrid app development space. In that aspect,

  • Flutter is simple to set up and applications are relatively faster.
  • It has built-in navigator and data management solutions
  • It also offers better animation- a detrimental factor for many app projects.
  • Flutter uses a relatively unknown language Dart.
  • It misses out on key features of JSX- that a wide community of developers relies upon.

Overall when you have to build an app, Flutter is by all regards, a reasonably good option. And if you are building your project from scratch with no strict preferences in terms of language, it can be easily counted among the best.

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