What Is The Difference Between Frontend and Backend Programming?

At Inverted Software we are often asked by our customers what frontend development and backend development are and what the difference between the two is.

In simple terms:

Frontend software development is any code that your browser receives from your server and processes locally on your computer to display your web page.

Such code is also referred to as client side code.

Client side code includes HTML, CSS and JavaScript.

HTML (Hyper Text Markup Language) is the building blocks of your web page.

It describes to your browser how to lay out elements in your page such as text boxes, buttons and pictures.

CSS (Cascading Style Sheet) is a styling language. It describes to your browser how to style your HTML.

For example: CSS can ask your browser to render a large blue button on your laptop and a small red button on your phone.

JavaScript is a unique language, as it can run both as a front and as a backend language.

In the frontend, JavaScript helps your browser to perform any dynamic tasks.

For example: dynamically add AJAX style comments to a video or swap images on a slider.

There is a large number of JavaScript frameworks to simplify common tasks.

For further reading about some of the most common JavaScript libraries head over here.

Backend code is every code that runs on the server.

Such code is also referred to as server side code.

Server side code has two main functions:

  1. Interact with backend systems such as a data store or other backend processing systems
  2. Generate frontend code to be sent over HTTP to your browser

Examples of backend code are: PHP, Ruby, .NET, JAVA and more.

JavaScript can also run server side using Node.js which is a JavaScript runtime engine built on Google Chrome’s V8 JavaScript engine.

In fact, using Node.js and server side JavaScript, we are able to generate and send to the browser client side JavaScript.

Interested in learning more about our development services?

Head over to our website at http://www.invertedsoftware.com

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