JavaScript – Enhancing Server-side Operations

JavaScript was developed in the late 90’s by Netscape Communications, an American company well-known for its proprietary web browser Netscape Navigator, under the name LiveScript. Soon after its release in 1995, it was renamed to JavaScript to masquerade as a spin-off of the famous programming language Java. After more than 20 years from inception, this lightweight interpreted language has transformed into an inseparable technology from today’s client-server architecture.

New and trendy web development practices are rapidly spreading into our day-to-day web browsing activities. Responsive web design has become a must-have feature for websites facing a multi-faceted audience. Users seek simple, interactive viewing experience rather than something disorderly that requires learning time.

JavaScript is considered as the most essential language in web development alongside HTML and CSS. It can interact with a website’s inherent HTML script, allowing it to juice up the web page with dynamic content and visual rendering. At its core, JavaScript is a multi-paradigm, object-oriented, open source language supported by a league of browsers created by Netscape and Microsoft.

In this article, we are going to dive deep into the complex implementations of JavaScript and learn its benefits.

Challenges that stem from client-server interactions
The client-server model is a robust architecture that consists of a service provider and multiple end users or requesters. This process of information exchange occurs in the top 2 layers of the OSI model of communications functions, between computing systems.

The Presentation Layer deals with the client computers accessing the server. Usually, any number of clients can request the server at the same time. It triggers the application code on the client side to generate a request. The request is routed to the server for evaluation, which is later interpreted into server-compatible languages. JavaScript can be run on both the client and server end, allowing the system to seamlessly process requests.

The Application Layer, otherwise known as the server side, is the back-end system that processes the client’s requests. The response is clubbed inside packets of data which is siphoned into the client user’s web browser. The Application Layer connects to the Database Layer in order to get access to persistent data. All client-server protocols are defined in this layer.

The challenges faced in client-server interaction are majorly due to the variation of client-side scripting languages. This is where JavaScript comes in. Browsers supported by JavaScript work faster by sending requests in the same format the server is going to process it. This results in low process-handling time, low latency, and lesser load on the web server.

AngularJS, Node.js, and D3.js
JavaScript has influenced many of its subsets and semantics of scripting languages. A few notable tools, frameworks, and libraries are mentioned in the following:

  • AngularJS: This JavaScript framework extends HTML pages and binds data to create dynamic web applications. You can quickly develop fully extensible applications and integrate effortlessly with other JS libraries using AngularJS’s given toolset. The features are highly scalable and suit your individual needs of web development. AngularJS is great for single page applications (SPAs). These applications mimic the look and feel of a mobile app and give exemplary user experience. Single page applications require no page refresh on page change, which makes it downright server-efficient. AngularJS is purely a client-side framework.
  • Node.js: A cross-platform command line tool used to create server-side applications. Node.js uses a highly scalable, simplified programming model that simultaneously signals the completion of tasks. Node.js, mainly designed for UNIX network systems, is a lightweight tool that brings about concurrency in client-server programming and increases the overall performance.
  • D3.js: This is a data-driven visualization tool that creates elegant patterns to show the relation among data. The D3.js JavaScript library uses HTML, CSS, and Scalable Vector Graphics (SVG) to animate raw data. D3.js has a wide range of applications across IT and non-IT industries.

Benefits of using JavaScript
Server-side JavaScript offers an array of benefits that alleviates the development complexity of websites:

  • JavaScript makes a web page more interactive without having to take a roundtrip to the server every time a link is clicked
  • JavaScript allows you to create animations, validate data, load new images, objects, or scripts on the client side
  • JavaScript can throw requests to the server without the user filling a form, and can handle the response from the server: performs as an intermediary moderator of communications between the user and the server computer
  • It gives developers ease of use as the same language can run on both the client- and server-side, therefore eliminating the need to learn a new programming language for handling server-side operations
  • JavaScript has an English-like syntax so it can be easily adapted and applied to improve a website’s functionality, user experience, performing data calculation, and visual effects on screen
  • JavaScript relieves the server from handling too many requests that can primarily be handled on the client-side
  • JavaScript can extend its functionalities by using third-party add-ons to help perform innovative actions faster

What makes JavaScript a choice over its counterparts?
JavaScript has engulfed the web development arena since more than a decade. It is agile, easy-to-learn, and freely available on the Internet, so hobbyists and newbies won’t have to cash in the proprietary tag to start developing. Now, we will delve into exploring JavaScript’s most noteworthy counterparts and how they are different from JavaScript.

Here are some leading names in the field of web development:

  • jQuery: It is a cross-platform framework packaged with a set of JavaScript libraries. It simplifies the query language and supplies many browser-independent functionalities such as animation and event handling. However, to implement jQuery, one has to understand the underlying JavaScript code.
  • Java: JavaScript and Java are similar at its core as they both follow the object-oriented paradigm. On a different note, Java is an application programming language while JavaScript is majorly used as a scripting language for supported browsers. The bifurcated working domains of these two powerful languages complement each other into full-fledged programming efficiency.
  • PHP: JavaScript can be run with PHP as it is purely a server-side scripting language. We can create a fully dynamic site with JavaScript on the client side and PHP on the server side.
  • Ruby on Rails: Rails with Ruby is a simple-to-read, eloquent productivity language. It is elegant and has increased readability making it easier to learn and employ.

 

In software development, efficient programming solutions are created by cutting-edge technologies and in-depth industry knowledge. Developers at Intelliswift understand the rich taste of customers, and work closely throughout the development stage to fulfill the requirements. We successfully implemented innovative business and IT solutions in several domains such as Web Solutions, Enterprise Applications, Mobility, Cloud integration, Quality assurance, Big Data and BI, and Staffing.