What is a “full stack developer”?

 

A brief history of web development role

In the early days of web development there was the “Web Developers”. They were responsible of creating the backend applications and the frontend views with HTML and a bit of javascript code, in order to validate forms and simple user interactions.

Some years ago, the interest in the visual part of the web grew and the use of javascript to show animations, user interactions, SPA, grew with it. From this point, a new role was introduced in web development: “Frontend developer”, a developer (mainly in javascript) that works only on the presentation layer to show data and let the user interact with it.

Why full stack developers? Why now?

There are many reasons for the existence of full stack developers, developers that create code for the client and for the server side:

  • With the introduction of frameworks, frontend programming is more accesible to backend programmers and vice versa.
  • Considering that Javascript is a language that now can run in client and server (historically, it has been used in client-side), with technologies like Node.js (a server that can create an HTTP server with Javascript), you can learn just one programming language, and being capable of program both client and server code.
  • The trend now is to reduce the server load, like “if something can be done in the client, do it in the client”. The server cost (time and money) will be saved. Given the previous reasoning, with frameworks like AngularJS, you can make an application with a reduced backend, and, even, integrated in the frontend.

If you want to be a full stack developer, one of the most fancy, “easy” and trendy way is the MEAN.io full stack JS frameworks pack.

 

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