Pratikkumar P. Gaikwad | 10 min read | Sep 03, 2020

All about NodeJS

1. QuickRead

Node.js is a JavaScript run-time environment cross-platform & open-source that executes JavaScript code outside a browser. It also helps developers of the Node js to build web servers & networking tools using JavaScript and a set of modules that handle different core features.
Nodejs was originally written by Ryan Dahl, 13 years after the first server-side JavaScript framework “LiveWire Pro Web at Netscape” was released.
This programming language originated as a proposal to extend the use of JavaScript in the web browser. Unlike PHP & Ruby on Rails, Node.js has a non-blocking event-driven I / O model, making stable & scalable frameworks an excellent alternative.

2. History of NodeJS

Dahl developed this language because he was not pleased with the way multiple concurrent connections are treated by the Apache Http server. He explicitly criticized the way code blocked the whole process or inferred multiple execution stacks for simultaneous connections.
His desire pushed him to build a project Node.js, which he presented at the inaugural European JSConf on 8 November 2009. Google’s smart use of the V8 JavaScript engine, event loop, and low-level I / O API managed to win millions of hearts in the project.
Microsoft and Joyent jointly deployed a native version of Node.js on Windows in June 2011. The first version came out in July 2011.
Dahl stepped aside in January 2012 and recruited “Isaac Schlueter,” a coworker and npm developer, to handle the project.

3. Architecture of NodeJS

  • Single Thread: Node.js functions on a single thread. This approach is worth considering since it prevents the change of context.
  • Event Loop: The event loop lets node.js perform non-blocking I / O operations despite the single-threaded functionality. A Node-passing transaction traverses a sequence of callbacks. And using the library ‘libuv,’ it manages the asynchronous events as a queuing & method.
  • Non-Blocking I / O: This loop operates on a single thread, but the runtime tasks are performed asynchronously on the top of the worker’s thread, returning the result to the event loop thread via call back. This is a perfect non-blocking way to manage to execute code.
  • Front-End Development: This involves coding the UI code, managing events, and communicating with back-end servers to pull data from the front end of the UI. The front end is what’s clear to the user and he’s participating in and performing things.
  • Back-End Development: The back-end is the technical work that the consumer can not see. It deals with server-side scripting and database interaction so that front-end apps can request the data.

4. Features of NodeJS

  • Encourages sharing: Robust Package Node Manager (NPM) facilitates sharing. Developers have a list of 50,000 packages and continue to create successful solutions. With NPM built-in, upgrading, exchanging, or reusing codes becomes easy for developers.
  • Lightweight and Scalable: Nodejs development accelerates without sacrificing on consistency or safety terms with the V8 JavaScript engine. In addition, the non-blocking of the thread lets the program behave in a network-friendly manner lightweight, scalable.
  • Ideal for real-time applications: The language has exceptional functionality to build real-time applications, such as chats and gaming applications. It is also an excellent match for programs that need a server or a non-blocking server based on an event.
  • Data streaming: responses to HTTP requests are assumed to be isolated events but in fact, they stream data. By integrating features such as processing files when uploaded, you can leverage data streaming within Nodejs. It reduces the total processing time significantly.
  • High-Performance: JavaScript single-threaded runtime provides smooth network applications. Based on the V8 runtime of Google Chrome, and written in C++, Nodejs is explicitly designed for multiple operating systems. Both V8 and Node are modified with performance optimization & security updates at regular intervals, thus maintaining JavaScript functionality.
  • Suitable for Microservices: All the major names use Node.js for their microservices. Asking why? Well, Node.js has the ability to optimize your application’s efficiency. In addition, removing the unwieldy modules makes running microservices on Node.js applications easier.
  • Cross-platform development: The partnership between Nodejs and Electron or NW.js helps you to create cross-platform applications.
  • Strong Single Codebase: Nodejs has proven to be a game-changing technology as it makes JavaScript server-side and client-side code from Node.js developers. This makes sending & synchronizing data automatically between the points fast, saving a lot of development time.

5. Areas where NodeJS shines

It’s talk. The most popular real-time program, Messaging Chat, demonstrates all the best of Node.js. Multiple users, high-traffic, heavy data, and running through computers. Also useful to learn Node when speaking, as it covers almost every aspect of the standard Node.js app.
Web server-side apps. Not a standard HTML use of Node, but if you combine Node.js and Express.js, you can render classic web applications on the server-side. Again, this is open to discussion, but if your app is low in CPU computing, you’re sure to be able to create it entirely in JavaScript. The idea behind this is to simplify development.
Streaming of data. Using the idea that HTTP requests and responses are actually data streams, we can use Node.js to build some positive features. For instance, processing files as they are being uploaded, e.g. for audio/video encoding.
The monitor dashboards. You can use Node.js nicely to render device dashboards to collect real-time information about website users and visualizations. Consumer reports and the opportunity to see what they’re doing right away, isn’t it perfect for business?
The monitor dashboards. You can use Node.js nicely to render device dashboards to collect real-time information about website users and visualizations. Consumer reports and the opportunity to see what they’re doing right away, isn’t it perfect for business?

6. Pros and Cons of NodeJS

Node.js pros:
  • Easy to learn for any developer who is familiar with JavaScript
  • Runtime environment to support the caching of modules
  • Event-driven input/output (I / O) ensures better handling of requests
  • Same code for both server-side and client-side = painless web application deployment.
  • NPM – the world’s largest software package manager
  • Cross-platform development: The partnership between Nodejs and Electron or NW.js helps you to create cross-platform applications.
  • It’s also possible to stream large files
Node.js Cons:
  • Inconsistently improving the API
  • Not an optimal solution for CPU intensive tasks compared to low-level languages such as C, C++, C #, or Golang.
  • Split the opinion on the asynchronous approach

7. Future of NodeJS

JavaScript is prevalent in both the browser and the server, and the credit goes to Node.js to render it possible. It has always been consistent with backward compatibility through most of its versions.
Node.js has already proven its worth on the Internet of Things. In addition, this technology will remain the best option for the development of a web-based & mobile-based backend framework. It clearly states that the future of Node.js is bright, and this programming language is here to stay!

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