To enter the tech field as a web developer, you must select and master a frontend framework.
To skip to a specific framework you might be interested in, use the section below:
- Where to go from here
This tool is everywhere, and thanks to its huge community, great support and amazing possibilities for large scale projects, React has become the industry choice for web apps.
In short, React still is the go-to choice to find a job as a frontend developer, and it will probably remain so for many years to come.
Pros of React
Large community to support it
Thanks to its popularity, React has a huge community of supporters. This in turn makes the development experience much better, as you will have a ton of resources, courses, workshops to look for to learn and improve your React skills.
Huge amount of packages and utilities
Another upside of the tool’s popularity is the large amount of packages and utilities people created around it, allowing you to create virtually any project you can think of.
Top choice to enter the professional industry
React approaches web interfaces by letting you create reusable components, which you can place across your app to save time and effort.
React is one of the best frameworks to let search engines index your web pages.
Cons of React
Harder to learn
Due to concepts like state management, lifecycle events and JSX, you may find React harder to learn compared to other frameworks like Vue.
While this pain point has been greatly improved lately with the framework new docs, React’s documentation has been known to be of poor quality and being not always updated.
No strict conventions
React doesn’t force you to write code using a specific pattern. Hence, developers will write React code in different ways, leading to potential problems in large scale environments.
Components can get messy
Since React implements the component logic in the same place where they’re rendered, things can get messy pretty quickly, making components harder to understand.
While this framework is still used by 19% of professional developers, the releases of React and Vue casted a shadow over it, with new developers preferring to learn React thanks to its widespread use and work possibilities, or Vue for its simplicity.
We’ve created a full comparison of Angular vs React for you to learn more about the differences between them.
Pros of Angular
Lots of features
Angular provides a ton of features straight out of the box, from routing to state management.
Cons of Angular
Complex to use
Due to its complexity, Angular is more complex to learn compared to its peers React and Vue.
Not so widespread anymore
With the release of React and Vue, Angular is not so widespread anymore, with React being a much better choice to find a job as a developer.
You must learn TypeScript
To use Angular, you’re forced to use TypeScript, which adds a further learning curve for new developers.
Developed in 2014 by Googler Evan You, Vue.js is an open-source lightweight framework which allows you to create web applications with ease and great performance.
Despite Vue.js being significantly smaller than React and Angular, it gained progressive popularity in the last few years.
Pros of Vue
Easy to learn
Thanks to its simplicity and its use of HTML templates, Vue has a much more progressive learning curve than Angular and React without requiring you to learn JSX or TypeScript to use.
Vue has an amazing, extensive documentation, whose authors keep updating and curing to give developers the best experience possible while using the framework.
With a size of just 18kb , Vue is an extremely light framework that will help you create highly performant web applications.
Can be integrated into existing apps
Apart from being used as a framework to create an app from scratch, Vue can be progressively integrated into an existing web application without any troubles in creating new components.
To build their first complex apps using a framework.
Cons of Vue
Less plugins and libraries
Compared to its more mature peers Angular and React, Vue offers a significantly smaller number of additional plugins and libraries, which may be limiting to some developers.
Vue offers great flexibility for developers to adopt their preferred patterns to write code. This approach can create significant problems since there can be “no best way” of writing Vue code, leading to different parts of the code being written in completely different ways.
This tool is widely adopted by millions of developers around the world, standing once again as the number one web technology on the 2023 Stack Overflow Developer survey.
Today, Node.js is loved by thousands of companies, thanks to its robustness, speed and ease of use, with a huge community of developers supporting it, making this framework the best choice for you if you want to jump into the backend side of web development.
Pros of Node.js
Allowing developers to switch between frontend and backend code easily.
Huge community of developers
With a large and vibrant dev community online, learning how to use Node as well as troubleshooting it are simpler.
Thousands of companies are always looking for backend developers who can use Node effectively.
Fast and efficient
Cons of Node.js
Prone to callback hell
A situation referred to as “callback hell” can happen in Node, when the way the code is written to carry out tasks makes it confusing and difficult to understand, like a puzzle.
Hard to master
Node is single threaded by nature, This factor can lead to challenges in handling CPU-intensive tasks and might require additional techniques to manage concurrent operations effectively.
It provides a set of features to build backend APIs like routing, middleware management and request handling. This framework is often the foundation of building backend applications and it’s currently used by thousands of companies worldwide.
Pros of Express
Large community of developers behind it
As with Node itself, a thriving and dedicated community will make your life easier when learning and applying Express.
Great opportunity to find jobs as a backend developer
Having Express in your toolkit will really help increase your employability, opening up working as a backend developer.
Thanks to its great amount of features, Express will help you develop backend applications quickly and efficiently.
Cons of Express
Harder to master
Similarly, becoming fully proficient in Express can take some time and perseverance.
Potential security issues
Many users of Express have reported problems with the security integrity of some applications built using it.
Svelte is a modern framework used to create web applications.
Pros of Svelte
Small bundle size
Great learning curve
This is thanks to Svelte’s easy syntax.
No virtual DOM
Removing a big overhead of knowledge you will need to gain.
Simplicity and readability
Cons of Svelte
Despite its many pros, Svelte is still an emerging technology, with limited job postings and a community dedicated to it.
While Ember has never found true, large-scale success like other frameworks, I still mention it here, as many high profile companies like Netflix, Twitch and Linkedin are using it as part of their platforms.
Pros of Ember.js
meaning all Ember apps will have the same structure, making it easy for devs to jump between projects.
used to debug your projects, install dependencies and set up new projects.
Cons of Ember.js
Steep learning curve:
compared to tools like React or Vue.
Not so popular:
Compared to its competitors, Ember suffers in popularity and, consequently, you will find less job opportunities for this framework.
Ember enforces a “best way” of using the framework, which you will need to learn and come to terms with if you want to use the tool.
Next has found great popularity in recent years, and I see it progressively becoming a new standard for React developers to create their apps.
Many companies are also adopting Next as the tools support better SEO, faster development and performance optimizations are hard to ignore for large organizations, making Next.js a great choice for existing React developers.
Pros of Next.js
Great for SEO
Thanks to its capability for server-side-rendering, building in Next scores well with search engine crawlers, boosting your pages on Google.
Build hybrid apps
Allows devs to create static apps that behave like dynamic ones.
Great for job hunting
Build React apps faster:
This is thanks to all the features Next offers.
Large community surrounding the project
Next has a thriving community of devs around it, with multiple resources you can use to build amazing apps for your portfolio.
Cons of Next.js
You will need to learn how to create React apps using Next.js
Thought you could avoid having to learn React first? Not quite.
No built-in state management
Next.js lacks a pre-built system for handling changing data, which is called state management. As a result devs must choose and implement their own method, which can be more complex but allows customization to suit specific project needs.
Do people still use jQuery?
5. Where to go from here?