It is a minimal and flexible node.js web application framework, that provides a set of features to build single and multipage and hybrid web applications. The minimal feature of Express.js is based on the ideation of reducing the human effort towards a server.
The flexible feature allows developers to add whatever that is needed and whenever they need to add it. Express.js is a web-application framework that helps you build single-page web-apps, multipage and hybrid web applications.
As we proceed towards the future of web apps, the line between websites and web-apps is getting blurrier and soon we will see a merger of them for a new trend in web-based digital developments. So, let us explore the 5 basics of express.js that can be useful for the development of web-based applications.
This concept of a boilerplate code needed for most of the projects was first introduced by "Ruby", now developers would not want to recreate the same code each time. Answer to this problem is creating a skeletal code that can be reused each time you need it for a new project and copy the code for utilization.
Express provides a specific utility to generate scaffolding for your Express project. This approach helps to generate a more sophisticated framework than just selecting from a collection of templates and allows users to create own public directories, routes, views, etc.
It relies on the structure of the app and once the structure is established, users start building it. This boilerplate concept is also useful for actual HTML that is delivered to the client.
With the HTML5 boilerplate, developers can generate custom builds. A custom build that provides a lean HTML template that is mobile-friendly and comes with an optimized Google Analytics snippet and placeholder touch-device icon. Express supports HTML5 boilerplate like templates by scaffolding of Express.js.
You can initiate your project by creating a directory that can represent the root directory of your project. You can keep the project files, separately from other files by creating a sub-directory-"project root" of your project directory.
The next step is to install an npm(Node Package Manager) package as it manages the project dependencies and all the metadata through package.json. To install npm, you can use "npm init:" which will then ask several questions to generate a package.json for your project.
You will be asked to provide a dedicated repository URL and a nonempty README.md file for the npm. Next, you will need to install the Express using the codes "npm install --save express. package(s) will be installed in the node_modules directory, by running npm. The advantage of the node_modules directory is that it can be regenerated anytime you want.
You will now have a minimal Express server to start developing your application. But, as you will start navigation over this server, there will be errors as you would have to provide "routes".
You need to provide several routes such as to home page and about page by defining the two vital parameters- Path and Function. Path is the route to a particular page and function is the specific function of that page.
A View is what is provided to the user by any application page or a webpage. Views can be static or dynamic based on the request page using HTML. Though Views can be delivered in the form of PNGs, PDFs, etc. But, HTML is quite compatible with the dynamic capabilities of Views. The advantage of HTML is construction on the fly, which enables dynamic response to each request.
Express provides support to many View engines that are used widespread and special preference is provided for the Jade View engine. Jade provides a minimal approach by reducing the need for HTML code writing and allows writing by removing the angle brackets and close tags. All this is converted to HTML by Jade at the end of writing. Though a limitation of the Jade engine is its limited use by front-end developers.
Middleware provides modularization that facilitates the handling of requests more easier. Express leverages middleware to handle static files and Views. Web application development looks to hire expressjs developer that can designate one or more directories as containing static resources.
This allows direct delivery of the static resources to clients without any need for handling. For this, the developer should be well-versed with the "Static Middleware".
Views are considered a complicated method to deliver HTML and yet Views can contain dynamic information. Dynamic Content refers to website content which is generated whenever a user requests a page. Dynamic content is a personalized response to any user requests that adapts according to the user data provided on the system.
By the use of dynamic content, websites and applications can provide greater user experiences with a high level of personalization and custom pages based on requests.