When web development first became popular the LAMP (Linux-Apache-MySQL-PHP) stack grew in popularity. Services like Wikipedia, Facebook, and even Slack have roots in this stack and to this day still, use PHP for their backend services. However, this required the use of the Apache HTTP server through which PHP code would be written through a Common Gateway Interface (CGI). CGI code often had to be interpreted (which is why PHP could also be replaced for Perl or Python) and did not offer a lot of features that should be readily available for web servers. This introduced the advent of state of the art web server frameworks such as Ruby on Rails and Django that allowed easier access to connections being made by the server. These frameworks created a rift between developers - existing developers were able to write more performant web Apps but new developers were not easily able to learn these frameworks with no programming experience due to the complexity and learning curve. This led to the creation of Node.JS.
Programming Languages and Resources for Web Developers
JS 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.