Javascript Quick Overview

What is Javascript

Javascript is the programming language of the web. It is used to create a dynamic, interactive websites that change based on user input. Javascript is essential for the front end (client/browser side) of web development and more recently is being used for backend development as well.

Should I learn javascript?

Javascript is a language with a huge community and is among the most popular of programming languages in the world. Any web developer or aspiring one should be knowledgeable with javascript. Web designers should also make the time to learn the basics as the worlds of web designer and web developer collide. More and more web designers are starting to learn programming and web developers are learning (and caring) more about the design aspects.

Is there a prerequisite to learning javascript?

No prior programming language or experience is needed. If you are famililar with other programming languages, javascript will of course be easier to learn. Knowing the basics of HTML and CSS is beneficial, but by no means do you need to be a master of either html or css before starting to learn javascript. All you need is patience, practice and a desire to learn.

What can I do with javascript?

Javascript is largely used for building websites and web applications. Companies like Facebook and Google use lots of javascript (in addition to others languages of course). For example, Gmail and Google Maps are both written largely in javascript. While pretty much every company with a website you can think of, uses javascript on the front end other companies like Walmart now use javascript (Node.js) to power large parts of their backend infrastructure. You can also use javascript to build mobile apps for IOS or Android using PhoneGap.

Some starter projects you can do with javascript include creating a recipe web app where you can search recipes from an API and add them to your favorites, an insurance quote calculator which determines your insurance quote based on several parameters and a monthly budget app.

What is the job outlook for a javascript developer

In 2018, the most popular and hotest jobs for javascript developers involve knowledge and experience with javascript frameworks like React, Angular or Vue. Before moving onto any of these popular frameworks a solid foundation of javascript is vital. Nevertheless, these jobs typically command a higher salary and greater demand, than those without it. You should know at least the basics of one of the frameworks above if you want to be a successfull job applicant.

Full stack developer is a fairly recent buzzword among recruiters. These titles ofen come with higher paycheques then those with only web developer. A full stack developer is knowledgeable and experienced with both the front and backend of web development. They often have several years experience with multiple languages and frameworks. In addition, they intimately understand the full scope of web development including the design aspects, best practices and latest industry trends.

What about jQuery?

Javascript libraries like jQuery help you minimize the amount of javascript code you need to write. Though often usefull, especially for quick turn around and fast deployment, jQuery is little more than syntactic sugar, used to minimize the amount of code written. You should learn the basics of javascript before moving on to jQuery. Note: jQuery is not a seperate language or a framework but merely a javascript library (ie. tool) to make what you want to do in javascript easier Further, JQuery should be used as a tool not a foundation. With frameworks like Vue and React, the popularity of jQuery is declining, especially as a sought after skill among employers.