Home Web Programming Tutorials Why Do Developers Prefer Node For Backend Development? 

Why Do Developers Prefer Node For Backend Development? 

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Why do developers prefer Node for backend development?

When a company is offering its services to the users which are sometimes counted to millions of them, they have to make sure that their system is perfectly good for all the operations it needs to handle for the users. To fulfill this desire, companies are very careful in picking up the programming language for the backend development. Choosing the right framework is crucial when it comes to developing the software that drives all the user-related services but making that decision is not so easy. Though as per the popular opinion, Node.JS is the perfect choice for the backend, I’m afraid it’s not the only choice for it. 

To build fascinating server-side architecture in the business, tons of tools are available and each one has something unique to offer. But if we talk about Node for backend development then it might pique your interest to know that as of today, this programming language empowers more than 100 thousand websites and some of the top online service providers on the internet. So, we decided to find out how this language works well for all the backend developers across the entire globe. And without any further ado, allow me to share why the developers prefer to use Node.JS for backend development services. 

What is Node.js?

One might think you would need a programming language to manage server-side development and we chose node.JS for the same but it is important to know that Node.JS is neither a framework nor a library. It is a runtime environment based on Chrome’s V8 JavaScript engine. 

As soon as this technology was launched, it was widely accepted and recognized as one of the most exciting single pieces of software in the current JavaScript universe. Though it’s an open-source technology, many top brands and tech giants like Twitter, LinkedIn, Walmart, Netflix, Uber, eBay, and more have highly invested to get node.js services to accelerate their business growth. 

Although node was popular, the wide adoption of server-side JavaScript with Node.JS reached its peak in 2017 and it continues to remain high. 

The advantages of Node.js

Robust technology stack

When it comes to programming languages, Javascript is, without a doubt, one of the most popular languages of all. As per the node.js reports, with more than 368,985,988 downloads and over 750 new contributors, the technology seems to be at its best. Use this technology for backend and avail all the advantages of full-stack JavaScript development including 

  • better efficiency and overall developer productivity
  • code sharing and reuse
  • speed and performance
  • easy knowledge sharing within a team
  • a huge number of free tools

As a result, your team will become more agile, the development process will get faster and you get to have fast and reliable software. Even the developers that are trained for front-end JavaScript can start programming for server-side without much effort. And since the language used on both sides is the same then you can reuse the codes in the frontend and backend by winding them into some modules and building a new level of abstractions. 

It isn’t any need for a full-stack developer to limit themselves to the traditional MEAN stack. Since there isn’t an alternative to JavaScript for backend programming, you are better off with Node.JS. Even in the tech stack, you can replace or choose the alternative technologies and frameworks for others but not for Node.JS. Because it is not optional and not a single technology out there possesses similar functionalities to it. 

Fast-processing and event-based model

Tests have shown that Node.JS is very fast in terms of performance. The results prove that Node.JS can handle concurrent requests more effectively in comparison to other programming technologies like PHP, JAVA, GO, and more. The reasons behind such amazing results are discussed below: 

V8 engine which was originally built for the Chrome web browser is used for the execution of all Node.JS applications. Since it is written in C++ language, V8 is used to compile all the functions of the Node.JS app which are written in JavaScript into machine code at a much faster rate. Sometimes V8 set the performance benchmarks for others. But all this credit goes to Google as it invests heavily in this engine every year to constantly improve its performances and reap all the advantages it can while they are at it. 

Node.JS is also capable of processing requests without any kind of delays because it is equipped with non-blocking input/output and asynchronous request handling mode. Pretty cool right? If we are talking in the terms of backend then it is assumed by asynchronous processing that the code is implied in a sequence. 

Normally every request holds a thread that makes other requests wait until the previous ones are finished processing. But in the Node.JS backend, every request is processed without blocking any thread using non-blocking I/O asynchronous processing. A callback is pushed when the request is processed while other requests are served continuously. Concurrent processing and short response time have helped Node.JS make the most out of single threading.

Another most important advantage of using Node.JS is its event-based model. When you are using the same language on both the client-side and server-side, the synchronization will take place real fast which is proved to be very helpful for event-based real-time apps. If you are working on any kind of solution that demands constant data up-gradation like chats, video conferences, gaming, and more then the single-threaded, asynchronous and non-blocking nature of Node.JS makes it the ideal choice for you. 

Even if you have opted for something else, you can divert back to Node.JS without facing any serious consequences. Many top companies in the world have done it to develop Node.JS applications and have achieved great results. For example, Paypal migrated from Java and noticed a significant decrease of 35% in their app’s response time. 

Scalable technology for microservices

You need a lightweight technology tool for microservices architecture and nothing could be a better option than using Node.JS. Martin Fowler and James Lewis describe its architectural style as “an approach to developing a single application as a suite of small services, each running in its process and communicating with lightweight mechanisms, often an HTTP resource API.”

Instead of building a single alleged monolithic core, you can break your app logic into smaller modules and microservices. This will not only lay the groundwork for the future growth of your application but will also provide better flexibility to it. So instead of integrating all the additional features into the basic functionality of web applications, it is much easier to just add more microservices on top of existing ones. 

Almost half of the microservice developers build web apps using the Node.JS backend. As the microservices type of architectural style is getting more attention, the companies that use it are experiencing significant growth. Here, each microservice in the application communicates directly with the database using streams that enhance the speed and performance of the app. For instance, let us take an example of Walmart’s shift to Node.JS with microservices architecture, they availed the following benefits – 

  • Overnight 20 percent conversion growth in general and 98 percent mobile conversion growth
  • One hundred percent uptime on Black Friday (handling over 500 million page views)
  • Saving up to 40 percent on hardware and 20-50 percent on overall operations

Another interesting success story about how Node.JS outperformed its competition in the terms of performance shines brightly in the case of GoDaddy. While running the SuperBowl ad campaign, the company was able to manage approximately 10000 requests per second without any downtime, and that too using only 10% of their hardware. This all became possible just because of Node.JS. 

Rich ecosystem

Node.JS package manager is crucial for the advancement of this technology. It is a default package manager for node technology and it serves as a marketplace for open-source JavaScript tools. There are more than 836000 libraries registered in the NPM and new ten thousand are published every week making the runtime environment of Node.JS quite rich. Some stat also suggests that in this modern digital age, 97% of web applications have NPM modules and it’s an indisputable fact among the community of developers. 

When you have access to such a huge amount of free tools and resources, the potential to use Node.JS becomes relatively high. Open-source backend technology allows you to create new solutions that can speed up your time-to-market and reduce development costs. 

Strong corporate support

Initially, the Node.JS was supported by Joyent but in 2015, a Node.JS foundation was created with the sole aim to  “enable widespread adoption and help accelerate the development of Node.js.” It might pique your interest to know that IBM, Microsoft, PayPal, Fidelity, and SAP were among the founding members of this organization. 

On the other hand, the companies using Node.Js for web app development are on the rise. Including PayPal, Medium, Trello, Uber, and Zendesk, the number has reached more than three hundred top companies. There are just a few open-source technologies that have got to enjoy such strong support from the world’s leading tech companies.  

Seamless JSON support

There are other backend technologies like PHP and Ruby on Rails and they need to use JSON format for communication. But for that, they need to convert them first into binary models whereas Node.Js doesn’t need to go through all this, it just uses JavaScript. This can prove to be helpful while creating RESTful APIs for NoSQL database support. when you use Node.JS, you get the advantage of a Javascript runtime environment that is seamless communication being one of the main data transfer standards. 

Why is Node.js good for the backend?

Backend is the most important aspect of any application whether it is a single-page app or a multi-functionality ERP software. Therefore, the developers must pay attention to every little detail and employ the best solutions as well as technology to the ongoing project. Node.JS can work very well with huge chunks of data in real-time. It also allows gathering and displays the data on the dashboards. But you should also note that HTTP requests and responses are large streams of data. 

  • Node.js backend development is concise because it offers a variety of features that can be impossible to have with an event-based environment.
  • Node.js is fast as it stores its data in native JSON.
  • It is supported by a large community of developers that are trying hard to improve the technology. Node back end can even perform high-level data streaming. And it doesn’t matter which operating system you are working on because it is suitable for all kinds of platforms. 
  • NodeJS is non-blocking and supports async functions so it can manage simultaneous tasks. So when the requests are handled in a single thread instead of queuing, this would help you accelerate the server activities. 
  • You can enhance the performance of the apps built using NodeJS technology. And they are scalable too. 
  • It is simple to learn and easy to use. 

When Node.js Backend is Not the Best Choice

Node.js is not a one-size-fits-all solution. When the load on the CPU tends to grow beyond its capacity, the efficiency will start going downwards. So, if you are required to process a large amount of data on the server-side then you must choose a little more stable and resilient programming language. Sometimes it is noticed that NodeJS apps have failed to manage heavy computing operations, blocking incoming requests and reducing server response speed. 

If you are developing a simple CRUD or HTML app that can directly transfer the data from the server then the APIs rendered by the NodeJS technology is unnecessary. Because if you use them, things will only get complicated. 

The biggest benefit of an open-source library is that anyone can upload custom features on the internet. The same thing is its downside too as many such donors have limited expertise and are prone to make some serious coding errors that can not only reduce your app’s efficiency but can also doom your time to wearisome bug fixing. So it would be wise to borrow your extensions from some authentic and authoritative sources.

Conclusion 

You can use Node to create a web page or apps without any need of creating new thread requests. It can be a perfect choice to run data-intensive and real-time applications across various devices. V8 engine and multiple server users make your apps more effective. The V8 engine takes the JavaScript code to a lower level and it is not mandatory to interpret it first to be run. 

Being one of the open-source frameworks, NodeJS follows an event-based model for app development and full-stack development. Though there are other technologies out there, none has that much speed, scalability, and active community support. So, if you are considering or rethinking your idea about having Node for the back end then I hope that this article on the advantages of using NodeJS might have helped you along the way.

Also Read: How To Deploy A Node.js Application On Linux Server?

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