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Cover image for Is the Front-End community better than the Back-End community?

Is the Front-End community better than the Back-End community?

brownio profile image Antonio Djigo ・1 min read

I know, I know, this is one of those click-bait titles you can see on YouTube.

Before everyone starts yelling, let me explain this.

I've been in the Web Development industry for a few years. Started 100% knee-deep in Front-end and everything seemed to be cool, sparky, flawless and there were a lot of "dev influencers" around the net creating videos, courses, etc...

It was almost impossible not to make someone think "I should become a React/Vue Developer".

Now that I've dug a lot more into back-end β€”to the point that I'm thinking about staying thereβ€”, I feel some kind of disappointment when I look at social media like Twitter, Dev.to or local events and don't really feel the "hype" I saw in front-end.

  • Do you think the same?
  • Do you think there is an important difference between those two worlds?
  • Could you recommend any resources for those who feel the same?

Please, let me know in the comments!

Cover illustration by William Erhel & BlueCoders

Illustration

Posted on by:

brownio profile

Antonio Djigo

@brownio

WebDev from the Canary Islands, looking forward to be one of those "cool" nomad devs someday.

Discussion

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I'd say there's still more hype in the front-end world than in the back-end world. And why do you need hype? It just creates false excitement, kills businesses and destroys jobs. Pick something that is stable and in-demand (need to be the most in-demand) and you're set. Frankly, I just don't know what you're trying to ask in this post. :-) But I'd say chasing excitement or hype is a fast way to kill your joy and shorten your career.

 

It's not exactly about the hype, but the feeling that someone gets when reading about those technologies, techniques, discussions or events that make you aspire to become better, and learn more about those topics.

TBH, I could not work with something that's just stable and in-demand, I also need to enjoy what I'm doing, so, it's also great when you have a lot of people who shows that they care about that same stuff, and they come out with tricks or alternatives you can also use. That kind of gives me that "extra-push" to keep going.

For me, something that does not give me excitement and/or joy is something that's not worth being part of

 

Maybe you're referring to "enthusiastic communities"? If so, while there are many, one problem is that the fundamentals of backend systems were developed and perfected (?) long ago. Apart from stuff like Serverless, nothing truly new is going on, which may explain why all the blogs and people sound sooooo tired, lol. By contrast, front-end is evolving pretty fast, and it's exciting to see better (not just different) things being done -- Flexbox, Grid, Web Components, Web Assembly, and so on.

It could also be that you're a highly visual and "immediate feedback" kind of person, two things that are squarely missing from backend development. If so, I'd suggest you completely drop backend development and become perfect at frontend development.

 

I don't think that back-end developers are nearly as socially excited.

I don't think that back-end developers are nearly as socially excited.

Perhaps so, but I thought this post was about something else altogether.

 

I blame the environment for the "less hype" when it comes to back-end development.

On the front-end you really have 0 choice and are stuck with HTML/CSS/JS. Everything that makes up the hype is more or less stuff thrown on-top of those three things that ultimately performs the exact same job at the end of the day.

At the same time, all the "choices" are close enough together due to being tied to the same underlying technologies that it can create a single "front-end" community. The fight between React/Angular/Vue exists because there is enough in common to argue about. The same can't be said for every back-end language/framework choice.

That isn't to say the back-end doesn't have its own communities. I've heard the Rails community is great. (Dev.to is built on it if I remember correctly ;D) There are also communities for technologies outside of web-dev, like Python for educational purposes, DIY, and beginners. I don't think any are nearly as large as any web-dev community, but that's just because most people have access to the web.

 

Seems pretty accurate to me, thanks for your opinion!

I'm pretty sure backend have big communities, Rails one, Go or Python are quite active around the internet, but I don't get the same feeling I see on the other side. Maybe because I haven't explored that much yet...

 

that's a really good point about everything being similar enough. Back-end devs are usually splintered off into different language camps before frameworks become a discussion.

 

I agree that there is much more hype in the front-end world. There is also a HUGE amount of different frameworks to deal with that people get excited about. The back-end is more tried and true from my experience. It's not near as trendy, and people don't get all excited about new stuff, they dig in and learn the things that are needed. you do still get SOME hype around new tech like Kubernetes, or new language additions, but overall back-end development isn't nearly as glamorous. I see front-end teams get recognition for making the thing easier for end users or prettier, or whatever it is that they are doing. I see back-end devs refactoring monstrous api's and the only people that are aware are other developers. That's a thing, your mom might see the new front-end that you built and she can appreciate what you've done, but if you tell her about the new back-end that you built then she will likely just get bored and lose interest. I think that it is a personality difference between the two.