Is Web Development Dying? Future of web development

Is Web Development Dying? Future of web development

Web development is unquestionably an industry in demand, growing and yet to reach its peak. Web Developers are in high demand across a variety of industries.

Almost every utility software made natively is now either on the web or preparing to move on the web. Do you still use Microsoft Word natively on your pc? Or do you find using Google Docs more convenient to use and share your files? Are you using your PC mostly from your web browser? How much software in your taskbar needs the internet to be functional? I know I have asked a lot of questions. The answer is the success of web development. The Internet has truly helped democratize information and made this world hyper-connected. The sum of almost all human-discovered and invented knowledge is now at our fingertips. The rise of the Internet (inter-connected) has made all of this possible. And with that was born the era of web development and web developers. To predict the future of web development, we must fundamentally understand its history first.

A Brief History Of The Web

The initial version of the web was rather humble and primarily made to share files (which were static) between university scientists and institutes around the world. It was originally conceived after the British computer scientist invented the WWW (World Wide Web) in 1989 at CERN.

During the web’s early days there were just documents with links between them. When a browser made a request, the server would just search the requested file in the hard disk and send it back to the browser (or client). It was relatively simple back then. Not long after that, the server started pre-processing the HTML before it was sent back to the browser. Soon after that in the mid-90s, JavaScript was invented and all of a sudden it was made possible to make statically generated HTML files interactive. Interesting Fact: The initial version was made in just 10 days (read more about what Javascript can do and is used for). It was Netscape (an internet browser) that packaged the idea of the “Internet” in the form of a web browser and made the Internet accessible to regular consumers.

Then in the late 90s, AJAX (Asynchronous JavaScript and XML) made it possible for the browser to send and receive data without reloading the page (how about you do a comparison of AJAX with React’s state management concept). Following AJAX, jQuery was invented in 2006. Which followed the invention of AngularJS and then React in 2013. Java and PHP were heavily used in the backend back then. In 2009 with the invention of NodeJS (originally authored by Ryan Dahl) it was made possible to execute JavaScript code outside the browser.

The Present

The world has become a giant superconductor. And web technologies are helping achieve it. Almost all software today has a layer of web technologies added to it, may it be in its front-end or back-end. React (or Vue or Angular) has matured a lot since its inception. So has NodeJS. A variety of frontend and backend frameworks have been invented to solve various problems and further the limits of the web. Fast production-ready frameworks like NextJS (built on top of react) started to roll out with the support of SSR (Server Side Rendering) and SSG (Static Generation). The ecosystem around these technologies has also evolved with time. With the era of the cloud and a vast choice of technology frameworks, it is now possible to create highly complex full-stack web applications and solve engineering problems like never before. Right now, web development as an industry is mature, very strong, and yet to achieve its peak.

The Future

Recently WebAssembly (abbreviated as Wasm) became the 4th official language of the web (alongside HTML, CSS, and JS). Wasm is designed in a way to complement and run alongside JavaScript. It is a new type of code that can run inside web browsers. (It is a low-level assembly-like language with a compact binary format that runs with near-native performance and provides languages such as C/C++, C#, and Rust with a compilation target so that they can run on the web, ref. MDN). Wasm would make it possible to run performance-heavy software (like Adobe Photoshop or Adobe Premiere Pro) right inside the web browser! In November 2017, Wasm 1.0 shipped to the major browsers.

Web 3.0 is a super hot name in the web development space right now. Almost everyone is hyping blockchain, which in fact not very new. But the hype of making certain systems decentralized can really solve certain problems. While the use cases of web 3.0 might evolve into something much different from what it is now. But it seems to be a very promising domain in web development. (Some humble questions you must ask before hyping web 3.0 – What was web 1.0? What is web 2.0?)

There is a variety of other super hot and premature domains “lurking” in web development. The peak is yet to be reached.

Is Web Development Dying (really)?

If you have understood my tone in this article, you might just have your answer. NO. Web Development is NOT Dying (not this soon, at least). There is yet a lot of progress to be seen in this domain. A lot will evolve. And I repeat, Web Development is not dying this soon.

Conclusion

That said, if you are someone who strives to become an excellent engineer – web development is not dying for you. Web developers make good money. There are a lot of well-paid jobs across the globe in web development. The (latest) future of web development is objectively secured.

A lot of the technologies mentioned in this article (including React, NextJS, NodeJS, and more) are available to learn at codedamn, interactively. Some are even free to start with. Are you someone who is interested in web development? Well, if you are absolutely new, you can either become a frontend or backend or full stack (frontend + backend) web developer. Check out codedamn’s interactive learning paths and courses on these domains below:

Learn React 18 for free – [Free course]

Frontend Web Developer Learning Path – [Some courses are free]

Backend Web Developer Learning Path – [Some courses are free]

Full Stack Web Developer Learning Path – [Some courses are free]

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