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What is Angular framework and how it is different from JavaScript programming

By Editorial Team on 2018-01-21

Popularity of JavaScript in most part comes from its solid and flexible frameworks. For instance, frameworks such as jQuery Mobile, Ionic, and React Native are used by App developers to design native mobile Apps for both iOS and Android devices.


In order to develop a modern website, one needs to know JavaScript and how it factors into the web ecosystem. JavaScript is a very versatile language as it allows us to increase the functionality of our websites greatly and make them more interactive. As developers started to write more and more code they realized much of the same tasks could be consolidated into a single container of functions that could be ported from site to site, minimizing the need for code reuse. This spawned the creation of JavaScript frameworks such as jQuery Mobile, Ionic, React Web, React Native, Express.JS, jQuery and most prominently Angular.

The Angular framework was initially released as AngularJS (referring to Angular 1.x). AngularJS was introduced as a JSON storage framework, but eventually changed to an MVVM (model-view-viewmodel) paradigm at version 1.6, which Angular currently uses. The MVVM paradigm utilizes the separation of code necessary for the actual web page (model), data being displayed on the website (view) and the logic needed to manipulate both inputted and outputted data (viewmodel). Eventually Google decided to rebuild AngularJS into its own platform called Angular which utilized TypeScript over JavaScript. Angular is currently in its 6th version and has a lot of features that make it a worthwhile JavaScript framework to learn.

The current version of Angular utilizes a command line interface to create your projects. Using Node.JS as its JavaScript compiler, it allows code to be generated “server-side”. However, Angular is purely a front-end service and requires a backend service to create a full stack application. Through the command line, you define pages and components of your App and Angular generates the code for you with blocks to edit to add your own personal functionality. While this may seem restrictive, it allows the compiler to more easily optimize the code based on the Angular paradigm. Angular also makes it easier to access web page elements easier through data bindings, mitigating the need for cumbersome JavaScript code. It also comes built in with HTTP modules that allow for both synchronous and asynchronous requests. Testing features in the command line is easy as well as components of your Angular App can be tested using the Karma framework, also built into the Angular command line. These are just a few of the features that Angular comes with out of the box. On top of that, Angular modules can be found on sites like Github which can be added to the Angular framework through the Node Package Manager (NPM).

Angular’s popularity is quite large and is only growing. It is part of the MEAN (Mongo, Express, Angular, Node.JS) stack which has been more widely used with the growing popularity of Node.JS. Despite the ability to create reactive front-end web apps, Angular also has the capacity to create native Apps for mobile phones through NativeScript. While on its own JavaScript is not quite a powerful language, Angular utilizes it well enough that you can write reactive web Apps without all the annoying JavaScript.

Programming Languages and Resources for Web Designers
Note that working with either JS or Angular, requires good knowledge and skills in the following coding languages: HTML, CSS (or HTML5 & CSS3) Also, in addition to Node.JS, you can use PHP, MySQLor Ruby on Rails along with Apache, and Linux to do backend coding. Also, obtaining the following PHP and database certifications are highly rewarding for all custom web developers: Zend Framework 2 ,Zend Certified PHP Engineer, Oracle Database 11g Administration and Oracle Database 12c SQL Fundamentals. For those interested in learning more about web design and development, here are a list of step-by-step training guide articles: i- Become CMS specialist, ii- Become front-end specialist, iii- Become expert SQL developer, iv- Become expert PHP developer. Lastly, if you wish to do more frontend coding, learning Bootstrap framework is highly recommended.

 

Summary
Frontend coding is well suited for those interested in pursuing a career in web design and development; however, other options are mobile App design and development, system admin and software engineering. It is advisable to consult with an IT career counselor to understand what career options best fits your skills. For instance, if you want to be a software engineer, learning HTML and CSS might not fit the bill. Here is an excellent article for learning more on coding and technology career roadmap. Once you know what career path you wish to pursue, you can make a plan on what, when, and how to learn. There are lots of online resources for learning coding and technology in general. For teenagers and high school students, High School Technology Services offers variety of hands-on training. For adults and professionals, Coding Bootcamps and DC Web Makers Companies offer basic to advance project-based programming and technology classes.

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