How to combat JavaScript fatigue with Rust

How to combat JavaScript fatigue with Rust

<strong>Do you find yourself in any of those thoughts when creating applications with NodeJS?</strong>

Do you find yourself in any of those thoughts when creating applications with NodeJS?

  • “I for sure need to pick the right npm module to solve this problem, but which one fits best and is getting supported well?”
  • “Uh, my app is growing so big, I have no idea what the difference between user and customer is anymore and which properties they have.”
  • “TypeScript will definitely solve my problems!”
  • “Hm, I don’t know if this is an error with TypeScript or in the transpiled JavaScript? Or did I just disable the wrong ESLint option?”
  • “Is this all what I will do for the rest of my career?”

Creating JavaScript applications is easy at first but it’s getting harder and harder once the application grows. You can wait and hope that any of the big tech companies will solve your problems through TypeScript and other tools. A few years go by and you ask yourself: Is this all? Do I create CRUD application for the next 20 years?

It is sometimes harder to keep up with the latest hype train then actually learning fundamentals.

NodeJS became a victim of its own success. The market is flooded with developers, every company is using Node in some part of their tech stack. You can say that companies don 't pick it because of it’s underlying technology but because they can get cheap labor and feel safe because all the other companies are also using Node, so it must be a good choice.

Meet Rust

You probably know the saying that you should learn Lisp, even if you won’t use it, just because the learned mindset will make you a better developer? Instead of learning Lisp to become a better developer, you can learn a language which is actually in use and will improve you as good as Lisp does. Meet Rust. Rust is not the latest hype, but has fundamentals which offer you a wide range of opportunities, even in the long run.

Rust is a systems language, but it’s ergonomic syntax empowers the developer after the first struggles.

From a NodeJS perspective, Rust can be used to create web server applications and services. You can write Lambda functions or full fledged applications. Instead of using TypeScript, Rust has a strong build-in Type system. Instead of using ESLint, it ships with the pickiest compiler out there.

The pain you feel in the beginning is different. I call it good pain. Good pain lets you grow as a person (and developer), bad pain just hurts. I would categorize many of the TypeScript and NodeJS pains as bad pain. Not because the tools are bad, but a language which was created in 10 days just gets you so far.

At some point you need to make a personal decision of how your life should look like. Your day to day has a huge impact on your happiness and the well-being of your surroundings. Rust can help you rediscover the joy of programming again.

After you learned Rust, you may think you just replaced tool X with tool Y and end up in the same place. But, there is a difference. Once learned, you can use Rust to create:

  • Games
  • CLI tools
  • Operating Systems
  • Web Services
  • Browser Applications
  • Applications on Embedded Devices

One would say you can cover the whole stack. Rust creates a self feeding system:

  • Developers from C, C++, Java, Kotlin, Python, Ruby and JavaScript flock to the language
  • Rust and its features are getting discussed not only in a web context but in a wide range of scenarios
  • Different areas, perspectives and use cases are getting fed back into the language in an open way
Lets picture a perfect world 5 years from now

You are writing your web service in Rust. Instead of installing five different npm modules which help you cover your mistakes, you are using build-in tools to harden your code base. After the compiler gives you a green light you are 98% sure your application will run safe and fast in the years to come.

But, hold on, you are still sometimes frustrated by the repetitive work environment. But now you mastered a language which you can use to build your own Operating System on the side, you can implement the TCP protocol, you can create Games and join a local game community. You can even create applications for the Browser which are compiled to WASM. If this is not enough, you can get yourself a piece of hardware and run Rust on it.

Node is not gone

NodeJS won’t be completely gone, and your skills neither. However you found a great addition and you might just focus on Rust more in the future. Remember, no language survived forever. NodeJS could end up with the same faith as PHP and others. Picking a systems language like Rust gives you strength and opportunities for many years to come.

Should you learn Rust?

From a developers perspective: Yes, definitely. Rust has many unique features which will be copied also to other programming languages (like Ownership in Swift). Learning Rust sharpens your thinking and will make you more considered in your day-to-day language of choice.

From a safety and correctness perspective: You should aim to replace part of your web service with Rust. Start small and see where it leads you. Other companies like NPMDropbox and Yelp are doing it and had big success.

Rust for the web is not completely there, but once fully landed, it can not only convert your web services into safe bets. Once mastered, Rust lets you jump up and down the stack, explore Computer Science concepts first hand and build tools in your free time other then the next CRUD application.

So, take the chance and make 2019 the year you learn Rust. Have something in production by Christmas and try to replace part of your services at work in Rust and see if it’s successful. Rust will not only let you sleep calmer at weekends, knowing that a rock solid binary is running in production, but the skills you gained let you explore a vast universe of possibilities around technology.

Originally published by Bastian Gruber at https://dev.to/gruberb/how-to-combat-javascript-fatigue-with-rust-2o5l*

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Top 7 Most Popular Node.js Frameworks You Should Know

Top 7 Most Popular Node.js Frameworks You Should Know

Node.js is an open-source, cross-platform, runtime environment that allows developers to run JavaScript outside of a browser. In this post, you'll see top 7 of the most popular Node frameworks at this point in time (ranked from high to low by GitHub stars).

Node.js is an open-source, cross-platform, runtime environment that allows developers to run JavaScript outside of a browser.

One of the main advantages of Node is that it enables developers to use JavaScript on both the front-end and the back-end of an application. This not only makes the source code of any app cleaner and more consistent, but it significantly speeds up app development too, as developers only need to use one language.

Node is fast, scalable, and easy to get started with. Its default package manager is npm, which means it also sports the largest ecosystem of open-source libraries. Node is used by companies such as NASA, Uber, Netflix, and Walmart.

But Node doesn't come alone. It comes with a plethora of frameworks. A Node framework can be pictured as the external scaffolding that you can build your app in. These frameworks are built on top of Node and extend the technology's functionality, mostly by making apps easier to prototype and develop, while also making them faster and more scalable.

Below are 7of the most popular Node frameworks at this point in time (ranked from high to low by GitHub stars).

Express

With over 43,000 GitHub stars, Express is the most popular Node framework. It brands itself as a fast, unopinionated, and minimalist framework. Express acts as middleware: it helps set up and configure routes to send and receive requests between the front-end and the database of an app.

Express provides lightweight, powerful tools for HTTP servers. It's a great framework for single-page apps, websites, hybrids, or public HTTP APIs. It supports over fourteen different template engines, so developers aren't forced into any specific ORM.

Meteor

Meteor is a full-stack JavaScript platform. It allows developers to build real-time web apps, i.e. apps where code changes are pushed to all browsers and devices in real-time. Additionally, servers send data over the wire, instead of HTML. The client renders the data.

The project has over 41,000 GitHub stars and is built to power large projects. Meteor is used by companies such as Mazda, Honeywell, Qualcomm, and IKEA. It has excellent documentation and a strong community behind it.

Koa

Koa is built by the same team that built Express. It uses ES6 methods that allow developers to work without callbacks. Developers also have more control over error-handling. Koa has no middleware within its core, which means that developers have more control over configuration, but which means that traditional Node middleware (e.g. req, res, next) won't work with Koa.

Koa already has over 26,000 GitHub stars. The Express developers built Koa because they wanted a lighter framework that was more expressive and more robust than Express. You can find out more about the differences between Koa and Express here.

Sails

Sails is a real-time, MVC framework for Node that's built on Express. It supports auto-generated REST APIs and comes with an easy WebSocket integration.

The project has over 20,000 stars on GitHub and is compatible with almost all databases (MySQL, MongoDB, PostgreSQL, Redis). It's also compatible with most front-end technologies (Angular, iOS, Android, React, and even Windows Phone).

Nest

Nest has over 15,000 GitHub stars. It uses progressive JavaScript and is built with TypeScript, which means it comes with strong typing. It combines elements of object-oriented programming, functional programming, and functional reactive programming.

Nest is packaged in such a way it serves as a complete development kit for writing enterprise-level apps. The framework uses Express, but is compatible with a wide range of other libraries.

LoopBack

LoopBack is a framework that allows developers to quickly create REST APIs. It has an easy-to-use CLI wizard and allows developers to create models either on their schema or dynamically. It also has a built-in API explorer.

LoopBack has over 12,000 GitHub stars and is used by companies such as GoDaddy, Symantec, and the Bank of America. It's compatible with many REST services and a wide variety of databases (MongoDB, Oracle, MySQL, PostgreSQL).

Hapi

Similar to Express, hapi serves data by intermediating between server-side and client-side. As such, it's can serve as a substitute for Express. Hapi allows developers to focus on writing reusable app logic in a modular and prescriptive fashion.

The project has over 11,000 GitHub stars. It has built-in support for input validation, caching, authentication, and more. Hapi was originally developed to handle all of Walmart's mobile traffic during Black Friday.

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A Beginner Guide To Node.js (Basic Introduction To Node.js)

Node.js is a very popular javascript free and open source cross-platform for server-side programming built on Google Chrome’s Javascript V8 Engine. It is used by thousands of developers around the world to develop mobile and web applications. According to StackOverflow survey, Node.js is one of most famous choice for building the web application in 2018.

Introduction

Node.js is a very popular javascript free and open source cross-platform for server-side programming built on Google Chrome’s Javascript V8 Engine. It is used by thousands of developers around the world to develop mobile and web applications. According to StackOverflow survey, Node.js is one of most famous choice for building the web application in 2018.

In this article, you will gain a deep understanding of node, learn how node.js works and why it is so popular among the developers and startups. Not In startup even big companies like eBay, Microsoft, GoDaddy, Paypal etc.

Why is Node.js so much popular

It is fast very fast

It’s a javascript runtime built on google chrome javascript v8 engine which means both node js and js executed in your browser running in the same engine that makes it very fast in comparison to any other server-side programming language.

It uses event-driven and non-blocking model

Node.js uses the event-driven, non-blocking I/O model that makes it very lightweight and efficient.
Now let’s understand the above statement in more details. Here I/O refers to Input /Output.

Event Driven Programming is a paradigm in which control flow of any program is determined by the occurrence of the events. All these events monitor by the code which is known as an event listener. If you are from javascript background then most probably you know what is event-listeners. In short, event-listener is a procedure or function that waits for an event to occurs. In javascript, onload, onclick, onblur most common event-listener.

**Blocking I/O **takes time and hence block other function. Consider the scenario where we want to fetch data from the database for two different users. Here we can not get the data of the second user until we did not complete the first user process. Since javascript is a single threaded and here we would have to start a new thread every time we want to fetch user data. So here Non-Blocking I/O parts come in.

Example of Blocking I/O operation

<span class="hljs-keyword">const</span> fs = <span class="hljs-built_in">require</span>(‘fs’);
<span class="hljs-keyword">var</span> contents = fs.readFileSync(<span class="hljs-string">'package.json'</span>).toString();
<span class="hljs-built_in">console</span>.log(contents);

In** Non-blocking I/O **operations, you can get the user2 data without waiting for the completion of the user1 request. You can initiate both requests in parallel. **Non-blocking I/O **eliminates the need for the multi-threaded, since the system can handle multiple requests at the same time. That is the main reason which makes it very fast.

Example of Non-blocking I/O operation

<span class="hljs-keyword">const</span> fs = <span class="hljs-built_in">require</span>(‘fs’);
fs.readFile(<span class="hljs-string">'package.json'</span>, <span class="hljs-function"><span class="hljs-keyword">function</span> (<span class="hljs-params">err, buf</span>)</span>{
    <span class="hljs-built_in">console</span>.log(buf.toString());
});

Note: You can learn more about the event loop and other things by going through this link.

What is Node Package Manager ( NPM )

It is is the official package manager for the node. It bundles automatically installed when you install node in your system. It is used to install new packages and manage them in useful ways. NPM install packages in two modes local and global. In the local mode, NPM installs packages in the node_module directory of the current working directory which location is owned by current user. Global packages installed in the directory where the node is installed and the location is owned by the root user.

What is the package.json

package.json is a plain JSON text file which manages all the packaged which you installed in your node application. Every Node.js applications should have this file at the root directory to describe the application metadata. A simple package.json file looks like below

{
    <span class="hljs-string">"name"</span> : <span class="hljs-string">"codesquery"</span>,
    <span class="hljs-string">"version"</span> : <span class="hljs-string">"1.0.0"'
    "repository": {
	"type" : "git",
	"url" : "github_repository_url"
    },
    "dependencies": {
	"async": "0.8.0",
	"express": "4.2.x"
    }
}
</span>

In the above file, name and versions are mandatory for the package.json file and rest is optional.

Installing Node.js

  • In Windows, you can install the node.js by using the installer provided by the official node.js website. Follow the installer instruction and node.js will be installed in your windows system.
  • In Linux OS, you can install the node.js by adding the PPA in your system and then install node js. Run the below command the terminal to install node js
sudo apt-get install curl python-software-properties
curl -sL https:<span class="hljs-comment">//deb.nodesource.com/setup_10.x | sudo -E bash -</span>
sudo apt-get install nodejs

  • In macOS, download the macOS installer from the official node.js website. Now run the installer by accepting the license and selecting the destination.

Test Node.js Installation

You can test the node.js installation by typing below command in the terminal

node -v

If node.js was installed successfully then you will see the installed version of the node in the terminal.

Frameworks and Tools

After gaining the popularity among the developers, there are so many frameworks built for the node js for the different type of uses. Here, I will tell you some of the most famous node js frameworks in the market

  • Express.js is the most popular framework for node.js development. A lot of popular websites is powered by express.js due to its lightweight.
  • Hapi.js is a powerful and robust framework for developing the API. This framework has features like input validation, configuration based functionality, error handling, caching and logging.
  • Metor.js is one of the most used frameworks in the node js web application development. This framework is backed by a huge community of developers, tutorials and good documentation.
  • Socket.io is used to build a real-time web application like chat system and analytics. Its allow the bi-direction data flow between the web client and server.
  • Koa.js is yet another most used framework to build the web application using the node js. This framework is backed by the team behind Express.js. It allows you to ditch callbacks and increase error handling.

Conclusion

Today, Node.js shaping the future of web and application development technology. This is the just the basic of how node js works. If you want to build a scalable web application using the node js then you need to know more then this.

Till now, you have got the basic idea of node.js and now it is time to build something using the node.js. You can start with first by create a simple server using the node.js and then connect your node with MongoDB to perform the basic crud operation.