Are you feeling it to be a full-stack web developer in 2K22?
Well! Your hunch is correct!
Because the demand for programmers is way crazy at the moment, and if you’re wondering whether it’s too late for you to get on the bus, you’re wrong. You’re not late; instead, you’re right on time.
Let me show you what you need to do. Just keep scrolling down!!
This guide includes:
- How to get started with web development?
- Critical languages to learn for web development
- Spending more time with terminal
- Setting up essential hosting services to deploy your website
- What are APIs?
- How to get a competitive advantage in front-end development?
- How important is it to learn the CSS framework?
- What’s more to the front-end development?
- How vital are soft skills in web development?
- Some optional learning
Clear the confusion
First, let’s clear our heads about the confusion about what to learn and how to get started.
We all get confused about when we should take the right step, and the most critical thing is when to take that step.
So, hear me out loud; you don’t need to learn everything and every technology. And yes, you read that right!
The best way to pick a technology or concept to learn is to look at the market of the companies you want to work for, see what technologies they use, and then learn those languages.
It’s similar to getting yourself ready because you want to get into MIT or Cornell University. What do you do? You create a plan and then move accordingly.
The great thing with this methodology is that once you’re clear about what you want and have learned one programming language, it’s easy to pick up another.
It’s not that one tech is excellent, and the other is bad. It’s about where you want to go head-on. There is a great use case for every one of them.
All I’m telling you is to focus on those that will be great to know in 2022 and will continue to be in demand for web development like –
- React JS
So let’s get into it.
Before you even get started learning web development. You first need to know that the best skill for any developer to master is googling.
Google is a developer’s best friend; when you don’t know how to fix an issue. OR, it would be best if you learned how to accomplish a specific task; the first thing you should do is google it and try to find the answer to your question on your own, do some research, especially when learning new technology.
And once Google is your best friend, Stack Overflow will be your everything! You’ll get to know what I am talking about.
The documentation for a chosen tech will most likely answer all of your questions. If you need to reach out to the online community of that tech for help, be very detailed in your issue and what you’ve already tried and searched for.
Getting Good at Googling!!
Get very good at googling because even the most experienced developers can’t remember everything. You should first understand if you’re just getting started is how the internet works!
You need a basic understanding of how browsers, domain names, and hosting services like HTTP, HTTPS, and DNS work.
Setting-up essential tools for web development
Once you know how the internet works, particularly how good you’re at Googling, you’ll need to set up your essential tools in web development.
The main tools for web development are –
- Web browser
- Code editor, and
- and terminal.
These tools are vital for web developers since they are how your end-user will view your applications. I prefer to use a Chromium-based browser like Microsoft Edge specifically.
There are other Chromium-based web browsers, such as –
- Google Chrome
- Vivaldi, etc.
These are all excellent browsers, but when testing your websites and web apps, you need to experiment with all the major browsers to ensure that your application is consistent with all viewers.
Currently, front-end devs test their projects either in Google Chrome, Microsoft Edge, Apple Safari, or Mozilla Firefox to make sure that their website looks good and works in all of them.
The other tool is the Text Editor. It is a web developer’s best buddy!
The better you understand what the text editor is capable of, the more efficiently, accurately, and quickly you will write code.
Most devs’ favorite code editor is VS Code (Yes!, the Microsoft Visual Studio Code).
VS Code is the most popular for the vast majority of developers all over the globe. There are tons of resources on YouTube that can help you install, configure and become familiar with VS Code. If you’re keen to become a pro in writing efficient codes, try VS Code first.
Use the terminal like a pro!!
Once you’re all set with a programming language and a text editor, you’ll need to get used to using the terminal or command line on your PC.
Some fear it, but I promise it’s not that bad. There are many options for a terminal.
Every operating system (Mac, Windows, or Linux OS) comes with one. But Windows comes with two terminals (because Microsoft always does extra); the command prompt and PowerShell, and you can also use the Windows subsystem for Linux. Hence, in a way, Windows now comes with three.
Another option and this is the one that I use, is “git-bash.”
If you’re on Mac OS or Linux, I’d recommend “zsh” (Zee-shell). After getting your local environment set up, it’s time to start coding.
Pro Tip: The shortcut to open the terminal on any Linux – OS by default is “Ctrl + Alt + T”. And on Windows, press Window’s Home Key and “R,” it will open a “Run” window, and then just type “cmd” to open “Command Prompt” window. Enjoy!!
The first essential languages in web development that you should learn and get good at are –
So the first thing to learn is HTML.
Every web page uses HTML. It’s the primary building block for the website. HTML provides the structure of a website, but it’s not a programming language. It’s a markup language. The majority of modern websites are built with HTML5.
And you’ll need to learn –
- The basic syntax,
- Semantic HTML,
- Validation accessibility,
- SEO best practices, etc.
CSS is another crucial part of every website. It makes them look good by styling the HTML elements. CSS adds flair with transitions and animations.
There is a lot to CSS, and if you’re going to focus on front-end development, you must understand CSS fully.
After learning the basics, you’ll want to know the layout features, flexbox, and CSS grid. Post that be comfortable with responsive design-including rim units, viewport settings, fluid widths, and media queries. And then there are CSS frameworks like Bootstrap and Tailwind CSS.
Some front-end devs skip over the CSS basics and go straight to a framework. That’s not good! It would help if you had a solid understanding of CSS before learning a CSS framework.
So it isn’t recommended to look into any CSS frameworks at this stage. But they are included later in this guide.
- The basic syntax,
- Dom manipulation,
- The fetch,
- ES6 features.
Doing a thing or two on the Terminal won’t help much until you know the most important commands to automate tasks. So, you need to learn more about the terminal as you start getting into version control frameworks deployments.
Using the terminal more and more will make you a master, and at the beginner stage, this is an excellent time to get more comfortable with the terminal.
Version control is critical to learning. It allows you to keep track of changes to your codebase since this becomes very important as you start working with other developers on a team.
Each developer is changing the codebase, and someone has to track it. Why not use an automated tracker like Version control. Thus, you’ll need to learn “git” and “GitHub.” These allow you to keep track of changes, collaborate on projects, and be an integral part of continuous integration (CI) – continuous deployment (CD) pipelines.
Once you are all set with the basics mentioned above, it would be an excellent time to learn how to set up a hosting service and deploy an essential website.
The easiest way to do this is with a static host like –
These allow for easy deployment that can be integrated with GitHub. Your website will automatically rebuild and deployed every time you update your GitHub repo (repository).
If your application requires a proper backend environment, you might want to look into a more traditional hosting service like Roku, Linode, etc.
And when you are ready with all the above ingredients, you should know enough to call yourself a front-end developer at this point of the roadmap. Because after knowing up till here, you should be able to build a static website and deploy and manage it.
Now, before moving ahead, let’s know the key differences between the backend and front end –
- Frontend developers primarily handle a website’s visual components, while backend developers support server-side developments by focusing on databases, scripting, and website architecture.
- Based on user feedback, a frontend developer designs and curates a website’s look and style and modifies it through testing. In contrast, a backend developer develops a frontend application that grants support, security, and content management.
- Frontend developers are responsible for making a website accessible for all users and responsive for mobile and desktop devices. And at the same time, the backend development team needs to develop an application for the frontend that can open up and functions accordingly.
- Frontend developers must know how to effectively integrate the design and UI/UX of a website or a mobile app, whereas backend developers should strive to implement algorithms and solve issues related to the system.
Now that you are familiar with what frontend and backend are let’s know more about some popular back-end development technologies.
Some backend technologies to learn
You should now look into “node.js.”
You’ll also learn about package management. node.js comes with “npm,” which stands for “node package manager.” Package managers allow us to easily add pre-built packages into our applications to help you accomplish various tasks without recreating the build every time.
After setting up all front-end and backend tech, it is time to connect both so that the user can communicate with your website. Thus, you need to learn about APIs (Application Programming Interfaces).
APIs allow you to perform some query or computation on the backend and then send the results to the front end.
A simple example is requesting data from a database.
The API on the server will act and then send the data to the front end, allowing developers to add a layer of security to the backend of the website. No one wants the front-end to perform these actions in the website application since that would expose the database, such as login credentials.
And that’s dangerous! Because it will expose all the critical info like saved credit cards, social security numbers, phone numbers, users’ physical addresses, etc.
The API allows doing all of this behind the scenes and sends the resulting data to the user. You’ll often hear the term “Rest” or “Restful API,” and there are other types like “GraphQL.”
Just about every website has some data that it needs to keep track of – for example, products, blog posts, etc.
Types of Databases you should know about
There are many types of databases. But the ones you need to care for are the relational documents – “Graphic-Column” and many others.
Do not think that there is one technology to rule them all. There are different types of databases for a reason. Depending on the use cases, some are better than others, and for one database, you should always use one.
This one type of technology will make your efforts fruitful. So, do your research to understand technologies to pick the best ones for your use case.
Now let’s get back to the relational databases.
Relational databases are a lot like spreadsheets with tables. These tables link to each other using unique identifiers, making relational databases more strict. They require you to define each table’s column and type ahead of time to have a pre-defined schema.
Then, because these databases are structured, you will need an ORM ( or object-relational mapping) to make mapping and the connected data easier. When the data is queried, it will return all the linked information you or the user needs.
So, each query has to reach out to each table and join the data back together before returning the results.
The most popular database of this type is “SQL (or Structured Query Language.”
And the other types are –
Relational databases based on SQL have been around for decades, and little has changed. At the same time, document databases are a relatively newer technology that brings many benefits over SQL databases. Document databases are not as strict as relational databases by default but can be as challenging as you need, so there’s more flexibility.
The best example of a NoSQL database in my experience is MongoDB.
When working with a team, it becomes apparent how easy it is to break up an application into segments for each team member to work on individually. There are many frameworks available. You should learn one of these three:
React is first and is by far the developer’s favorite. It’s pretty easy to learn and has excellent community support. It’s used in many companies, and there are a lot of job openings for react developers.
But the next is Vue.
Vue is probably the most straightforward framework to learn. It’s fantastic to work with and has excellent community support, but it isn’t as popular in the job market as React. But every year it’s adopted more and more now.
Angular is the third option. It is a trendy framework, but you might not enjoy working with it. It’s more suited for huge applications and corporations. There are a lot of job openings for angular developers too!
Now, when you’ve learned React or Vue, other frameworks built upon these other frameworks like “Next.js” and “Gatsby,” built on top of “React.js” and “Next.js,” built on top of Vue will be easy for you to learn.
After learning React and Vue, you can look into one of these to add more built-in functionality, like static site generation and server-side rendering.
You need to give a good look and user experience to your users. Without this, your project isn’t complete.
Is authentication necessary?
Authentication is essential, and the content management system (CMS) allows you to manage your site’s content efficiently.
So, if you’re a freelancer, you’ll want to pick a good CMS for your customers to update the content themselves easily on their website and not bother you every single time.
WordPress is probably the most popular CMS, but traditionally it requires you to use its service for the backend CMS and the Front-End. So you’re locked in now.
For the past couple of years, headless CMSs have become very popular, and WordPress now has a headless option, allowing you to use headless CMS with any Front-End technology. You’re not locked into a specific technology now.
You’ve been through enough front-end and back-end technologies to call yourself a full-stack developer in the roadmap ahead for web development.
But the learning never stops, and it never exhausts our minds. All you then have to do is keep up with the updates and upgrades to the technologies you’ve learned so far and keep your eye out for new emerging technologies that could add value to current or future projects.
Now, something that often gets overlooked is “soft skills,” or a better name as “people skills,” along with personal development.
These are the top skills that you should invest effort in developing –
- Attention to detail,
- Work ethics,
- Time management,
- Interpersonal skills, and
Leadership is another huge issue that you will run into is losing motivation and impostor syndrome. So, you need to surround yourself with people who support you and understand that you’re not alone.
These all essentials are not limited to front-end development; instead, you can include them in your life to bring discipline and start winning on all fronts.
You might want to keep your eye on a couple of other front-end frameworks.
And there is another React-like framework – Astro. With Astro, you can build static websites using existing frameworks. You can incorporate react components, view components, and spell components with Astro.
If you want to expand your CSS skills, it will help if you look into CSS animations, preprocessors, and different ways to incorporate CSS into your project, like CSS modules and “CSS.njs.”
And if you prefer working with backend technologies, you might want to learn another backend language. There is a lot to web development if you’re going to get into mobile development.
Some popular apps made with electrons are –
- Microsoft Visual Studio Code,
- Figma, and
Moreover, Artificial Intelligence(AI) and Machine Learning(ML) are now widely used to imitate human intelligence and perform simple and complex functions like learning and analyzing information, collecting data, understanding the emotions of humans, or solving complex business challenges problems. We saw over the past year the rapid growth of machine learning platforms and applications such as “GitHub co-pilot.”
AI is everywhere, so get used to it. It’s not going to go away, and I wouldn’t worry about it taking your jobs! There is a lot of demand for new developers who can develop and improve AI-based technologies.
Remember, you don’t need to learn everything that we just covered, or you can scroll up and see what I mentioned at the start of this guide.
In this guide, I have mentioned vital resources that will help you learn the technologies needed at each step of web development. Once you’ve learned the basics, focus on the technologies used in your current job, aspiring job, or maybe a market-disrupting business idea.
And there’s no reason to be worried if you can’t keep up with current trends and technologies since most companies use the most up-to-date technologies. And don’t forget, learning something new takes time. It takes time, patience, and practice to get good at something.
So be patient, take your time, never stop learning, and never give up!!