WEB DEVELOPMENT - all you need to know

What Does Web Development Mean?

So basically web development is the stage of work involved in developing a website for the World Wide Web. This work can be as simple as creating a static page to a dynamic complicated web application with all the bells and whistles. In this section of the website we will be mainly focusing on what you need for the two main different types of deveopment: front-end development and back-end development.

Front-end Development

Front-end web development is mainly focusing on the GUI being built using such technologies as HTML5 CSS3 and JavaScript and its many frameworks and libraries.

We will break this down into three parts to help you to understand exactly what is expected of you as a front-end developer.

HTML5

HTML stands for HyperText Markup Language, and is a tool recognised by internet browsers

HTML is bears respinsibility for declaring the semantic structure of a webpage through the use of tags. So basically you are, through HTML, going to be, in layman's terms, saying what things are. So for example, a webpage in which there is a header and a paragraph will look something like this:

HTML5 Front end development

Notice in the image above that everything in HTML is all about being inbetween tags. As you experiment more and more with HTML you will breeze your way through this, and be able to write the tags in your sleep.

CSS3

CSS stands for Cascading Stylesheets. CSS is the pretty face behind websites. HTML is the text and the elements, but CSS demands what they look like, how big they are etc. Hence the term Stylesheet. Below you can see a most basic example of how CSS works!

CSS3 front end web development

JavaScript

JavaScript is a programming language which, according to Github, is the most popular proragmming languge. There is a huge scope of what you can make using JavaScript. You can even make server side web apps using JavaScript development, so it is definitely worth learning!

JavaScript enables interactivity on a web page. What does this mean? Well for example, what if you wanted the color of some text to change when you click on it? Or if you wanted to make a slideshow, where the slides move on one by one based on a set timing interval? JavaScript is the language you need to have this level of control over the HTML elements and your browser.

JavaScript Frameworks

For quick web app development, often JavaScript is used in a framework. Whilst it is definitely better for you to learn and get a better understanding of vanilla (or plain) JavaScript, once you get going you will probably love using a framework or library.

Here is a really interesting article on JavaScript frameworks.

Click here to read it

Backend Web Development

If you have got this far into researching the wonders of the web, you will be aware of the fact that there is more to a stunning website than the visuals. There is the serverside running - there is the data and all the behind the scenes stuff to make things like contact forms and maintain databases for shopping websites etc. We will consider what the web experts at Split Web Graphics consider to be the languages to learn if you want to go down the back-end route.

PHP

PHP is a recursive acronym standing for PHP: HyperText Preprocesser. It's a general purpose server side scripting language. It is used to dynamically produce parts of a website that HTML and JavScript cannot do from client side.

Like what?

Let's say for example you had a box where you wanted to get the user's details and email them through the web server to an email address, maybe if you wanted to call them back on their phone number which was entered. PHP will use a special function to compose that information into an email body and then forward it through the server. Client side languages cannot do that.

SQL

SQL stands for Structured Query Language. Essentially, this is a programming language to control database information.

But with databases, you usually have a GUI, so why wold you want to learn a language?

Put simply, you will never get the perfect amount of control over a database through using a GUI. You may be asked to group, display and alter quite a tricky collection of data in all sorts of intersting combinations. Having perfect control of the data is essential for a backend developer.

Maybe if the visual side of websites is not for you, then do not lose heart. Back end development may be for you!