FLAN

How Node.js is Going to Replace JavaScript

Node.js entered the game and came out on top of the competition

Everyone has been going bananas about JavaScript™ and with good reason: it’s so easy to manipulate non-secure pages with malicious JavaScript because it’s client side and has an eval function. Despite the proven fact that Java is better than JavaScript, the latter language has prevailed the Web 2.0 wars. That’s until now, though.

Until now.
Though.

Node.js is another client-side scripting language that is growing exponentially more popular as the waxing and waning moons of our majestic and unpredictable Mother Earth change. Just like when any other new language comes about, it is our obligation as web developers to choose the best one, only use the best one, and shame those who dare to do not what we do. That language is Node.js, and it has proven itself superior to JavaScript for reason(s):

NPM

NPM stands for Node Package Maid. It basically writes all of your Node for you. JavaScript doesn’t write itself, and time is money, so Node means more money because you’re not wasting time writing any of your application. Just type “npm install” and you’re done. 10x.

In a nutshell — or NODESHELL hahahah—Node.js is the new champion of programming languages. Just like NASA is pushing people away from planetary research, it’s time for us to start pushing people away from JavaScript and towards Node.

Mars colonization depends on it.


Jenn Schiffer is the Pulitzer prize-winning author of PHP is Better Than CSS. She lives in a box with her dog, Lucifer.

Next Story — Responsive Web Considered Harmful
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Responsive Web Considered Harmful

A history of web standards’ claim to “help our users” when they are actually putting them and developers in danger

Believe it or not, there was a time when all computer screens were the same size and building interfaces for all devices was an efficient task — typically needing one design and one implementation. Look around today and there are devices of all shapes and sizes, being used in and out of the office, and people are depending on these devices to accomplish all sorts of tasks while on the go. There is a rich, yet dangerous, history to this movement that claims to help users and bring the Web to all users

It is said that it was not until 2001 when the first website to adapt to the size of the browser, Audi.com, launched. It was called “responsive web design” because it was designed to respond to the changing screen sizes being introduced to the Web at that time.

Aside: This was the same year the first smartphone, the Apple iPhone, was introduced. According to the Web, its much smaller screen caused issues when trying to render regular desktop-shaped sites in 2001 before the Audi release (see image to the left). Although no one has said this partnership between Apple and the car company foreshadowed Apples current efforts to bring self-driving cards to the consumer market, it could be said.

The great thing about “responsive web development” — besides it being more polished and making more sense semantically and linguistically than the less realistic “progressive enhancement” and “graceful degradation” philosophies— was that browser vendors were quick to adopt standards which provided developers with the tools to ensure all of their content could be seen regardless of screen size. While browser vendors and their web standards-writing counterparts were, and continue to be, able to control how developers could build responsively, they could never quite control how developers could build responsibly.

Today, there are approximately 6.8 billion phone screens of different sizes that developers and designers are responsible for building the Web for. That also means 6.8 billion people walking around with phones and doing tasks that take their attention.

This leaves us with a real-life landscape of danger, full of billions of people walking around and not paying attention because they are on these smaller devices. And not only that, the amount of time it takes to build for different screens and debug on different devices is exponentially increasing the destruction of proper work/life balance for web developers. This, too, is dangerous as it affects their health — and the extra income from overtime software developers are notorious for earning is normally used to purchase more devices. It’s a dangerous slope and a slippery cycle.

studies show that 3 out of 5 teens walk in the opposite direction of 2 out 5 teens while on their smart devices

What can the people who drive business decisions on the Web — designers, product owners, scrum popes — do to ensure safety on the web and in the workplace? In order to provide an earned work-life balance to web developers, as well as a safe space for people out and about, we need to stop building responsive web pages ASAP as possible.

In order to provide an earned work-life balance to web developers, as well as a safe space for pedestrians, we need to stop building responsive web pages ASAP as possible.

This is an intense stance to take, but it is definitely technologically feasible, especially with the advent of JavaScript and a new fork of CSS called Flexbox. These are languages used to build the Web and allow developers to build one page that works best on the desktop but can still work on smaller devices in the case of emergencies. JavaScript was created nearly a decade before the 2001 Audi.com responsive site launch but did not gain traction until the later naughts thanks to libraries like Node, NPM, and package managers, which launched a vivrant new-wave movement of the language.

What many people do not realize, though, is that the inventor of JavaScript, Brandan Eich, silently invented responsive web YEARS before Audi did. And it was SAFE. His homepage was obviously designed for the desktop and kind of looked readable on small devices, but not enough for anyone to want to go to the site.

Desktop version of Brandon’s Web World
Smaller screen size of Brandon’s Web World
Proof of Brandon Eich’s progressive responsive work well before Audi in 2001

This meant the designers and developers of his page only needed to work on one design and implementation (no extra work or overtime) and there was a much smaller chance of anyone on their phones trying to walk or drive while looking at the homepage. And since this happened so many years ago, we know we have the technology to follow this obviously safe pattern. With the insurance of safety and low development/design costs, it is no wonder we have seen continued success from Netscape even today.

Ending responsive web affects our users, our employees, our finances, literally everything that has been touched in the current digital revolution. And sometimes evolution requires devolution — or reverting back to previous practices that turn out to actually work better than today’s disruptions. It is time to look up from our screens and experience life. Safe life. Away from the screen. Safely.


Jenn Schiffer is a desktop-only web applications engineer who wants everyone to look up but not at her.

Next Story — Embarking on a New Adventurous Journey
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Embarking on a New Adventurous Journey

A blog I should have written two years ago.

Every day is a winding road. — Sheryl Sandburg

Facebook reminded me, today, that exactly two years ago I decided to end one journey and head off on another journey. An employment journey.

When you are a web developer with a job, you sometimes end up in situations where you are able to become a web developer with another job.

This journey is small I know, but it’s not yours, it is my own. — Jennifer Jean Schiffer

Two years ago, I decided to go on that adventure. I ended my adventure with my employer at the time, and made an agreement to go on another adventure with another employer. And here is my Medium post announcing that which has happened two years ago. Because I did not do it at the time it happened.

Life is a highway. I wanna ride it.— Tim Jobs

Change is inevitable. We learn things, We teach things, We build. We create. The industry affords us opportunities to grow. And I did that, exactly two years ago. By quitting my job and going to another job.

And here I am, announcing it to you. Congratulate me.


Jenn Schiffer is not quitting her job, she just forgot to tell you all about her new adventurous journey via blog exactly two years ago.

Next Story — This Would Have Never Happened with Bower
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This Would Have Never Happened with Bower

A small collection of thoughts, poems, and art

If an NPM module is published in the forest
And no one is there to prevent its unpublishing
Do all web developers become trademark experts?


“We don’t mean to be a dick about it”
said the red Power Ranger*
trying to explain
why the Rangers’ vehicles
decided to form a dick
instead of the Megazord

*Jason


They have unpublished
the modules
that were in
the registry

and which
you were probably
installing
for work

Forgive us
we don't mean to be a dick about it


Jenn Schiffer is a thoughts-haver, poem-writer, and art-maker.

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