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Ineza Bonté Grévy
Ineza Bonté Grévy

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Layers Of Web Development for beginners


The development of websites consists of two main layers which are frontend and backend. Each layer has its purpose to fulfil and are both dependent on each other to produce a product which a user can interact with. My goal in this article is to expound on these two layers and their significance in the development of a website.

What is frontend?

Frontend also known as client side refers to what the user of your website sees and interacts with. This refers to things like forms, buttons, animations, menus and so on.

The main objective when designing the frontend part of a website is to make sure that the website is user-friendly in terms of how the user will be interacting and accessing different components of your website. For example the use of background colours that are in contrast with the text in order to improve legibility

It is also important to ensure that the website is responsive in order to improve user experience which will translate into a positive perception of your brand and business.

Frontend languages

When designing the frontend part of a website there are three main languages which are commonly used i.e Html, css and Javascript

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  • HTML
    HTML is the standard markup language for creating websites. It is used to describe the structure of your website. It's basically the skeleton of your website.

  • CSS
    CSS is used to describe how the content in your HTML document will look like on a webpage. You can use it to define font-families, colours, animations and so much more.

  • JavaScript
    JavaScript is a scripting language that allows you to add functionality to your website. It is basically the brains of your website. It is in charge of dynamically updating the content of your website and other backend processes

What is backend?

Backend development also known as server-side refers to the activities of a website that happen behind-the-scenes unseen by the user.

It handles functions such as retrieving data from the database, updating data that has been modified, authentication of users when logging in and many other important tasks.

Backend languages

Some of the languages that are used when working with the backend are Java, Python, Ruby, PHP. In the recent years JavaScript has become a commonly used language used in the backend through a runtime environment called Node.js, Node.js allows us to execute JavaScript code outside the browser.

NB: Node.js is not a framework nor is it a programming language. It is simply an environment that allows you to run JavaScript outside the browser.

Being able to use JavaScript both on frontend and backend has made the work of developers easier as they do not need to go through the stress of learning a new language and maintaining different codebases. This is why we have seen the use of Node.js increase among many web developers

How does it add up?

As you begin your journey into web development you may wonder where you'll start or which areas will you concentrate on. A good rule of thumb would be to try both fields and see which one you prefer.

If you feel you can handle both frontend and backend you can become what's called a Fullstack developer. Which means that you are well equipped in both areas, thus giving you a higher bargaining power when looking for employment

Thank You for reading this article😊. Feel free to leave your questions/comments in the Discussions section below, I'll be sure to respond to them.

Top comments (2)

lailahgrant profile image
Kemigisa Lailah Grant

Thanks for this good piece but meanwhile, what’s your advice for someone that’s afraid of coding because of the sleepless nights, errors and frustrations involved?

inezabonte profile image
Ineza Bonté Grévy

Hey Lailah, Great Question! Coding is a journey that has taught me many lessons. First of all getting frustrated is totally okay. You won't always run your codes successfully on the first try. Frustration makes it worse as it will prevent you from organising your ideas😓. A good piece of advice would be to take a break and cool down💆🏽‍♀️, listen to your favourite music🎧 or do something fun💃🏼, then come back to the challenge with a fresh mind ready to tackle It 😤. Always remember that you are not alone, we are here for you, the developer community is the best I know, people are always ready and willing to help when you come across a problem. All of this is a process of learning. Failure does not mean it's the end, it should instead motivate you to do better. In the end this will make you stronger and a wiser coder😎