Web Development Technologies Evolution


Web Development Technologies Evolution

The world is advancing at a remarkable speed. The never-ending research on technological interventions over the years has changed the face of the earth. While talking about advancements, one of the fastest evolving areas is the internet. The Internet is eventually changing everything, including ourselves. The impact of the internet on business, education, communication, science, technology, and the human race cannot be denied. Certainly, the internet is one of the most significant and influential creations in the history of human existence.

A study by CISCO in 2011 predicted that by the year 2015, there would be 25 billion devices connected to the internet, and this number could rise to 50 billion by 2020. With the rising number of devices supporting the internet and their expanding diversity, the internet remains the fastest growing technology. It has made it convenient to deliver specialized services and information to anyone in the world regardless of the location, making the world a global market.

Since the beginning of the internet, web development has been progressing rapidly. Over the years, web design and development have traveled from basic HTML to modern Progressive Web Applications. Web development has been adapting to rapid technological innovations. In the early ’90s, the internet was all about putting text on websites and linking images to it, keeping in view the slower speeds of the internet. However, with the growing faster speed of the internet, web applications have become the drivers of information. It has also enabled end-users to access the information and services they need.

What is Web Development?

Web development is the process that involves creating and managing a website either for the world wide web or for a private network. In a broader term, web development refers to the tasks involved in developing websites for hosting via intranet or internet. The process of web development includes web UI design, content development, client-side/server-side coding, network security configuration, and many other tasks.

The complexity and magnitude of work that goes into web development can vary from simple and straight forward design. It can be a complex and diverse combination of various web-based internet applications and social network services.

Some of the key tasks required for web development are:

  • Web Design
  • Client-side and Server-side Coding
  • Database Management
  • Web Server Hosting
  • Content Development
  • Network Security Configuration

The process of web development is carried by Web developers by using a variety of coding languages. The languages they use can vary based on tasks they are performing and the platforms on which they are working. Web development is generally further broken down into front-end development (user interface) and backend development (server and coding).

Front-end Development

Front-end developer is responsible for layout design and interactivity using different languages, e.g., HTML, CSS, and JavaScript. The user interface and experience, such as the graphical aspect of the website and the interactive aspects, are all combined together in the front-end development. Web developers write a series of codes and programs to bind the elements, make them look pleasing to eyes, and add interactivity with ease of use. These programs are run through a web browser.

Back-end Development

The backend development is mainly referred to what goes behind the scenes. It usually involves data storage and management. The data works as the playground for front-end functionality. The backend of the web consists of a web server host and a database. The backend development is performed through different computer programs to ensure that the server and the database run smoothly together. To perform these complex duties variety of server-side languages are used like PHP, Ruby, Python, and Java.

Full Stack Development

The term is quite often heard and used while talking about both Front-end and Back-end development. Full-stack development takes care of both the front-end and the backend. It involves handling the aspects of the web on all levels. It is about linking the client and the server sides to determine how they will work. Full-stack development requires a high level of expertise.

History of Web Development

The concept of the internet had existed for at least a half a century before it eventually became a standard household utility in the 1990s. The rise of the internet has strongly been linked with its visual aspect recognized by mainstream culture. Like many other computer systems, the internet’s potential wasn’t realized by the general population until it took a graphic interface to appeal to the masses.

As the internet started, the connection speeds were too slow as compared to modern speed. So, the web design was not a priority because complex processes were not even given a second thought. However, in the mid 90s the need to represent content and data in more than just text form was felt. During this time, web designs began to surface with features like background images, text columns, and animated gifs, etc. All these features helped improve the overall design and user experience.

Before the 1990s

The idea of the World Wide Web was conceived in the 1980s, and it gained significant prominence with the introduction of the Mosaic browser in 1993. Prior to that, in 1989, Tim Berners-Lee (a fellow at the CERN Laboratory) outlined his concept of a computer platform to connect researchers based in different parts of the world virtually. Consequently, in 1990, this led to the invention of the Hypertext Markup Language (HTML). HTML then became the central building platform of the World Wide Web and remained at the core of its coding to date.

The late 1990s

Moving forward to the late ’90s, the majority of the web designers shifted their focus towards creating user-friendly websites and applications. The introduction of Flash was a key game changer at that time. Flash was introduced as a graphics editor for computers. It was not only used as an interactive display tool for websites and games but also as a music and video player. The role of Flash in the early inroads towards web design improvements cannot be overlooked.

Further, in 1999, Microsoft introduced Ajax. Ajax-enabled performance enhancement of web browsers through JavaScript. Although awareness on usage of Ajax was low because the developers didn’t acknowledge the fact that they could use JavaScript for programming.

The Era of 2000s

The internet advanced rapidly and massively in the years following the tech crash of 2000 – 2001. The start of 2000s was when Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) came into the picture. It played a vital role in empowering web developers to control their website layout on each page. HTML coding contained the text, while CSS took care of the visual graphic presentation. CSS made website customization and maintenance easier. It also ensured quicker page load times.

Later in 2004 – 2005, social media platforms began to appear. The introduction of Facebook, Gmail, YouTube, and likes of Myspace brought a big change in web development because programmers started to integrate those platforms into their design strategies. In 2006, a university graduate John Resig invented jQuery to improve usability and responsiveness.

During 2007 – 2008, Apple came up with major technological innovations. The release of first-generation iPhone in 2007 and the introduction of the App Store in 2008 was a massive intervention. With its release, the iPhone proved to be a game-changer as it forced developers to focus on responsive mobile phones compatible designs. Furthermore, the App Store offered third party developers the chance to sell their products and services.

The continuous endorsement of JavaScript remained persistent as the first JavaScript frameworks ‘BackboneJS’ was introduced in 2010, and it drew the attention of many developers.

Web development projects started to focus on shorter loading time, security, and ease of usability after the introduction of smartphones, and fast internet connections.

Scope of Web Development Today

The scope of web development today is to find new outlets of implementation in various fields. Web development now isn’t just creating websites. From behind the scenes, coding, and programming to maintain a website’s responsiveness, incoming traffic, and overall performance, the scope of web development is expanding.

Web developers and designers have a vivid idea of the potential of the internet. With the rise of the Internet of Things (IoT) with other technological devices, IoT can connect multiple devices using the internet.

With access to so many different internet gadgets, fixed-size web pages are no longer an option. They make the user experience difficulty with no uniformity depending on the device being used. To make webpages identical across all devices, and devices adaptable, the idea of “one web” has emerged. Through one web, responsive features and adaptive designs are embedded in the CSS code. It enables the website or web application to automatically reorganize its structure and visual presentation while recognizing the device. The feature has been enhanced through the introduction of the latest versions of HTML5 and CSS3. The latest techniques have made it possible for modern web applications to work under the “one web” concept.

The bottom line is that in current time and age, people have ready access to the internet, and they can perform various tasks using the internet. Web development today has evolved massively, and it’s an ever-going process. We aren’t finished here yet in terms of web development and its techniques.

Current Process of Web Development

When we think about the web development process, all we focus on is the technical matters such as coding, wireframes, and content management. However, great website design isn’t just about integrating slick visuals, aesthetically pleasing graphics, or even the social media buttons.

A crucial part of the web development life cycle, which usually stays behind the scenes, is the stages of initial information gathering, in detail planning, and post-launch maintenance. Great web design is actually about having a website creation process that aligns with the overall goal and strategy.

A holistic web development and design process usually consists of the following eight stages, which are discussed below.

Website Development Timeline

When we think about building a website or any project in general, we consider two main issues; time and cost. The amount of time and cost may vary according to the size and scope of the project. To outline the whole design and development process, a process timeline with tasks and milestones is established. It enables you to track your project implementation and keep a check in balance regarding the deadlines.

Planning – Main Goals, Purpose, Target Audience

This stage is about researching and exploring different possible outcomes. The most important tasks in this step are to get a clear understanding of the purpose of the website, the main goals, and the target audience. In this stage, usually, all of the stakeholders sit together and map out information based on the following general questions:

  • Purpose: What is the primary aim of the website? To inform, to sell (e-commerce), or to entertain?
  • Target Audience: Who is the site for?
  • Content Development: What does the target audience expect to find or do there?
  • USP (Unique Selling Proposition): Who’s our competitor (if any), and how we should stand out?

A well-described plan based on pre-development data can protect both; time and money.

Sitemap and Wireframe Creation

Have you ever thought of building a mansion without a blueprint? Well, building a website without a sitemap is just like that and suicidal.

The sitemap acts as the foundation for any successful website. It gives web developers and designers a clear idea of the website’s information architecture. It also helps understand the concept of the landing pages and content elements.

To get a visual presentation based on a sitemap, a wireframe or mock-up is created. A wireframe is usually defined as a visual representation of the user interface, which will be created. Although a wireframe isn’t the final draft of elemnts such as colors, logos, etc., it does act like a “blue print” for how the website will look whe it’s ready. It is just like a rough and cheap in production sketch.

Design – Visual Elements and Page Layouts

During this phase, the rough sketch of the website gets in shape. All the visual content, such as graphics, images, and videos, are created. Once again, all the info that was gathered in the planning phase comes handy. The target audience must be kept in mind while working on the design.

The layout design process is usually shaped by existing branding elements, color choices, and logos, as required by the client. The main function of the layout is to visualize the content and demonstrate the basic outlook.

Content Creation

The stage of content creation usually overlaps with other stages of website development. The role of content can’t be overlooked. In this stage, it is necessary to put everything in black and white, which you’d like to communicate to the audience.

Content writing also involves the creation of headlines, new text writing, and editing, playing around with the existing text, etc. It takes a lot of time and effort to create engaging content. In modern times, the client usually provides content that is ready to be migrated to the website.

Coding and SEO

At this stage, the developers start creating the website itself. Graphic elements that have been designed during the previous stages comes into use. All the web page elements which were designed during the mock-up are given coding language and get tested. Furthermore, Frameworks and CMS are implemented. At this stage, a deep understanding of each website development technology being used is crucial.

The other important step is SEO (Search Engine Optimization). SEO is the process of enhancing website elements like title, description, keyword, etc. SEO boosts the incoming traffic on the website.

Testing and Launch

The testing element is one of the most routine parts of the process. Every single link is tested. Moreover, every script is run, every form is checked, and proofreading is done. Usually, at this stage, code validators are used to check if your code follows the current web standards.

After testing the website several times, it is uploaded to a server by using FTP (File Transfer Protocol) software. After the uploading has been done, yet another test is run before the website is launched.

Maintenance and Regular Updating

Web design is a constant ongoing process that requires constant maintenance. A website is not a product; rather, it’s more of a service. Maintaining and updating a website is crucial. Problem fixing and troubleshooting become top priority tasks in this stage.

The other important element in this phase is keeping the website up to date according to new technologies and prevailing standards to stay in the market.

Future Predictions of Web Development

As we know, the world of the internet is in continuous development, and technology is evolving at a rapid rate each year. The web development industry is also changing constantly. Being such a fast-paced evolving industry, web development enthusiasts and professionals need to predict and learn about the future of web design and development or risk being stranded in the past. Let’s have a look at some trends which are predicted to be the future of web development:

Artificial Intelligence (AI)

Artificial intelligence needs no introduction. Several companies have already implemented AI according to their needs. Even some of them have been reaping the benefits of it as well. A simple definition of AI is the use of intelligence displayed by machines instead of human intelligence.

Internet of Things (IoT)

Like Artificial Intelligence, the internet of things (IoT) is another promising trend going to be prevalent in the future of web development. IoT is defined as bringing internet connectivity to the everyday objects around us to get more utility out of them. A big reason behind this trend is the availability and usage of cloud connectivity.

Programming Languages

The languages working behind the software to run new features already exist. JavaScript, Python, and PHP are considered to be the most popular programming languages lately.

Looking at the future, these trends don’t seem to change. The developers are well contented and satisfied with the capabilities of the trio, but the possibility of a new intervention is inevitable. Python language, however, is on a continuous rise. It is a flexible, resilient, and high-level programming language that can serve all the purposes.

Furthermore, another programming language, “Rust,” has shown increasing popularity in recent years. If not the most popular language in 2020, it is certainly ready to become one of the most popular shortly.

Web Developer Certifications at QuickStart

The scope of web development is expanding day by day. From being to a general web developer, the paradigm has shifted towards being specialized. To become a web developer, extensive knowledge and practice are required. As there is always more to learn, this can be achieved through various web developer certifications. QuickStart provides various certifications for web developers to enhance their skills and stay updated regarding new tools and software for designing websites. The main courses provided by QuickStart for web developers are as follows:

  • The Complete Web Developer Course 2.0
  • Full Stack Web Development Boot Camp

Jobs Titles and Average Salary

The following are the top ten jobs in web development and the average salaries of it.

  • Front End Web Developer: The average salary of a front-end developer is $76,929 / year
  • Back End Web Developer: The average salary of a backend developer is $101,619 / year
  • Full Stack Web Developer: The average salary of a full-stack developer is $102,400 / year
  • Web Application Developer: The average salary of a web application developer is $65,609 / year
  • Design and Layout Analyst: The average salary of design and layout analyst is $50,730/ year
  • Web Security Developer: The average salary of a web security developer is $43,224 / year
  • WordPress Developer: The average salary of a WordPress developer is $76,526/ year
  • UI Designer: The average salary of a UI designer is $64,413 / year
  • Junior Developer: The average salary of a junior developer is $55,000 / year
  • Senior Developer: The average salary of a senior developer is $101,000 / year

The increasing demand for web development has created a high demand for skilled developers. As IT keeps evolving, web developers also require adequate knowledge and skills regarding new trends. Through the web developers’ certifications at QuickStart, developers can stay current and polish their skills. For more guidance on web development certifications, contact our experts at QuickStart.

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