DEV Community

Cover image for The 3 Main Reasons, You Should Learn JavaScript
Lawrence Eagles
Lawrence Eagles

Posted on • Updated on

The 3 Main Reasons, You Should Learn JavaScript

Table of Contents

  1. The JavaScript Law
  2. The JavaScript Scope
  3. The JavaScript Evolution
  4. Closing Thoughts

1. The JavaScript Law

Any application that can be written in JavaScript, will eventually be written in JavaScript.
-- Jeff Atwood, Author, Entrepreneur, Cofounder of StackOverflow

13 years ago, Jeff Atwood gave us what we now referred to as the JavaScript law.
It is interesting how JavaScript has evolved as a language. Although, it made a humble entrance into the programming world, in so much that it was named Javascript so as to coax Java developers. The language has since grown stronger and has turned its fortunes around.

🎉 The naming of JavaScript was pure marketing. JavaScript is to Java what Seahorse is to Horse

Time has past and the language has evolved tremendously beyond the imagination of many.

Today, JavaScript is everywhere.

🎉 Like insects, JavaScript is ubiquitous.

While it began (primarily) as a desktop-constrained browser-only language launched by Netscape in 1995, it has conquered virtually every internet-connected platform on Earth: phones, tablets, desktop, servers, and thousands of devices in the Internet of Things.

💡 The language has conquered the web and has even made its way into space.

alt JavaScript in space

2. The JavaScript Scope

JavaScript is an extremely versatile language. Once you’ve mastered it, the possibilities are endless, hence there are numerous job opportunities for JavaScript developers.

JavaScript developers often have a wide area of specialization. They can build front-end, back-end, mobile developers, and even desktop applications.

🎉 The language has even applications in machine learning, blockchain, and IoT its scope is tremendous.

Below, are some areas of application of JavaScript:

  • Frontend web development:
    JavaScript is the king of Frontend web development. The undisputed champion. Although, Dart and Web Assembly are hovering around it still rule supreme.
    In the frontend, JavaScript via its libraries and framework viz: Angular, React.js, Vue.js, etc.

  • Backend web development:
    JavaScript somehow found its way out of the browser via Node.js. This is an interesting breakthrough considering JavaScript lived a big part of its life enclosed in the browser.
    With Node.js, developers are able to bring the awesomeness of the JavaScript language to the backend and this marked a new era in web development.

Using JavaScript for both frontend and backend allows developers to create isomorphic applications and gives a better developer experience among other advantages.
little wonder several big tech companies such as Walmart, Paypal, Netflix, Linkedin, Groupon (to name a few), were quick to adopt Node.js

  • Mobile Development: This is an area you would expect to see the likes of Java, Kotlin, and Swift shine, not JavaScript. However, JavaScript again finds its way here and shines; I dare say brighter. With the likes of React Native, we are able to build cross-platform hybrid mobile applications using just HTML, CSS, and JavaScript.

Many company prefer this because it eliminates the need for building two separate codes for iOS and Android, it is cost-effective and easier to build and maintain. All this without actually trading off quality.
Some companies that power their mobile application with React Native are:
Slack, Bloomberg, Airbnb, Instagram, Skype.

  • Desktop Application: This is the most unlikely place you would expect to see a language that was meant to live in the browser yet it is a shining star in this world. With Electron.js desktop applications can now be built using JavaScript. As in other areas, JavaScript simplifies building a desktop application to a matter of writing just HTML, CSS, and JavaScript. Again this is very cost-effective and easier to build and maintain. Hence, it is preferred by many companies.

Notable desktop applications built with Electron.js are:
Slack, Whatsapp, Microsoft Teams, Invision, Figma, Visual Studio Code, Twitch, Atom Text Editor

🎉 Many languages have advertised themselves with quotes such as: "code once, run anywhere" or "learn once write anywhere", but JavaScript is the language that these quotes best describe. It is aptly called the language of the web

3. The JavaScript Evolution

With every new version of JavaScript, we see the language evolving for the better. New amazing features are being added and we get syntactic sugars where necessary (e.g JavaScript Classes). We have gone from writing callbacks to promises and now async-await.

These improvements redound into all areas where JavaScript is applied.

As a result of these, the language has solidified its position as the language of the web. Today we use popular software architecture designs such as JAM Stack and Single Page Application (SPA), but in the heart of both, we see JavaScript sitting as King.

In addition, as the language gets better it keeps expanding its scope of application. This means more job opportunities for JavaScript developers.

4. Closing Thoughts

There several other good reasons to learn JavaScript, the 3 above are for me the main ones. It is also worth mentioning that the language is very simple and beginner-friendly. And being very popular, there are tons of free learning material online.

I do hope I got you interested in the language or at least; I dare say made you appreciate your skill as a JavaScript developer more.

As always, if there are other notable mentions that I missed, or you have an opinion or correction to make, you are more than welcome to share it on the comment below.

Discussion (0)