Front-end development is the development of a web application or a website that a user can interact with. With over 1.8 billion websites powering the world wide web and the technical revolution brought in by covid-19, it is evident that the demand for clean, neat, responsive, precise, and SEO-friendly front end is going to touch new heights in the coming times. No matter how complex functions and operations happen in the background of a website, the user experience has to be seamless and is the topmost priority for all major projects. The seamless operations require the usage of frontend frameworks that streamline the front end development of interactive, user-centric websites. In this blog, we will look at top front-end frameworks to know along with their pros and cons, but before that let’s take a look at what front-end frameworks are and why is there a need to use a front-end framework.
What is Front End Framework?
Some examples of Front end frameworks are React, Vue.js, Angular and jQuery etc.
Why Use Front end Framework
The first question that comes to mind is, why use framework? Things were going well using plain HTML and CSS as well.
A common question that sticks in the mind of newbies and sometimes professionals is, which framework do I need to use?
The answer is you can use any framework you like and are versed with, the concern is which one adheres to the requirements, in the following sections we will have a look at top front end frameworks along with their pros and cons
Best Front End Frameworks
Developed and maintained by Facebook, React is one of the best open source frameworks today and used by 40.14% of the developers as per StackOverflow developer survey 2021. React was developed to cater to the need of code maintainability issues due to the constant addition of new features in Facebook. It stands out as it provides a Virtual Document Object Model. React is meant to work together with other libraries for state management, routing and APIs interaction. A general rule of thumb says, use React when your app is expected to have high traffic and a stable platform is needed to handle it.
Pros of React
- Components in React are reusable in different parts of the application.
- The Virtual DOM gives a consistent and seamless performance.
- New changes can be easily made without breaking the original flow.
Cons of React
- JSX is complex and hard to understand for beginners.
- The React framework undergoes frequent updates so it is difficult to make proper documentation.
When and when not to use React
Facebook, Netflix, Pinterest, UberEats and many other popular websites uses React in the production
Developed and Maintained by Google, Angular is a single framework based on TypeScript. It was formally released in 2016 to bridge the gap between increasing demands of technology and conventional notions. The uniqueness of Angular can be attributed to the fact that Angular has a two-way binding feature, Two-way binding gives components in your application a way to share data. Use two-way binding to listen for events and update values simultaneously between parent and child components .There is a real-time synchronization between the model and the view. Which means any changes in the model are immediately reflected on the view and vice versa. It deals with the development of mobile and web applications, and can easily build single and multi-page applications as well. Major companies like BMW, Forbes, XBox uses Angular
Pros of Angular
- Real time model-view synchronization is possible via in-built functionality.
- Developers can make interdependent components of code. The components of code can be decoupled as well using dependency injectors.
- Because of the presence of Directives, developers can play around document object model and create rich content using HTML.
Cons of Angular
- Angular is quite complex to learn because of its wide variety of features and built-in functionalities.
- It has been observed that dynamic applications build using React can lag sometimes in terms of performance.
When and when not to Angular
Angular is the best choice for creating large, enterprise-scale applications. It is recommended not to use it when building a simple application with a small team,things may get more complicated then.
Forbes and BMW uses Angular
Pros of Vue.js
- Availability of detailed and comprehensive documentations makes it easier to learn.
- Vue.js supports the development of both complex dynamic applications and simple small applications.
Cons of Vue.js
- It is currently in the developing stage so does not have a large community support.
- Most plugins are written in Chinese, so there is a language barrier.
When and when not to use Vue.js
Vue.js is one of the best options when designing a single-page application from scratch as it integrates with the existing server pages along with a wide range of powerful features including bundling and code-splitting. It is recommended not to use Vue.js when building large projects.
Leading corporations like Xiaomi, Alibaba uses Vue.js for their applications.
- One of the simplest frameworks, even with very little programming knowledge you can get started with jQuery.
- It can be used to deploy dynamic applications, the components can be easily added or removed due to its flexible DOM.
- Many alternatives for jQuery are available nowadays that perform much better.
- jQuery interface is quite lightweight due to this there may be problems in the longer run.
When and when not to use jQuery
Twitter, Microsoft, SurveyMonkey uses jQuery for their projects.
Jack Lukic invented Semantic-UI and released it in 2014. It is relatively newcomer in the arena of frameworks and is quickly on its way to become the most popular front-end framework across the globe. Its objective is to authorize the designers and developers by creating a language for sharing the user interface.The usage of natural language makes the codebase self-explanatory. Semantic-UI is designed for a smooth design of interactive user interfaces.
- It is one of the latest front-end frameworks offering out-of-box functionality.
- It offers rich UI components
- Developers using this have to be skilled enough to build custom necessities.
When and when not to use SemanticUI
SemanticUI, although relatively new as a framework, is quite efficient in delivering an elegant and seamless design of user interfaces. It is recommended not to use it when developers are inexperienced with JS as the developers have to be qualified enough to develop customizations in the applications.
Snapchat, Digital Services and Accenture uses SemanticUI.
swiftly. The framework is based on MVC or Model View Controller architecture, MVC architecture View sanctions the execution of the component logic. The collections can be utilized to differentiate the models and allows to build projects with dissimilar types of users. When developing applications with Backbonejs, you could also use tools like Thorax, Marionette, Chaplin, Handlebars, and more to make the best use of the framework.
- It is quite easy to learn and implement.
- It delivers uncomplicated tools to produce the app construction and the framework does not offer a handy structure.
- The boiler plate code has to be transcribed.
When and when not to use Backbone Js
It is a good choice for building single-page, small and simple web applications. It can also be used in building large projects as it keeps app logic separated from the user interface. It is recommended to consider some other choices for front end frameworks as it is decreasing in popularity nowadays.
Uber, Pinterest and Tumbler uses it.
Ember resembles Angular in terms of component-based functionality and two-way data binding. It was developed in 2011 to handle the growing demands of modern day technologies. Multifaceted web and mobile applications can be built using ember and its effective design will handle all the concerns. The developer community is trivial despite it being new and unexplored. The framework is quite a challenging web UI framework owing to its conventional and rigid structure.
- It is a faster development framework and is well-managed.
- It has good documentation.
- The updates in EmberJS are quite slow and it has a challenging syntax
- It is a substantial framework for smaller apps.
When and when not to use Ember
Ember is a great choice for creating complex and feature-rich single-page web applications for the client-side. It is recommended not to use it when working with small project/teams, it is quite overwhelming as the developers can only operate within a strict context of the features.
Tinder, Apple Music, LinkedIn uses Ember.
This blog discussed important Front end frameworks.
Feel free to explore the frameworks mentioned above by making projects. Apart from the seven frameworks explored above, there are plenty of other important and useful frameworks as well, you will get to know them once you start making projects. Learning by doing is what an aspiring developer must do!!. Since there are many options to choose from among the frontend frameworks, you may be doubtful regarding which framework to choose, in all the cases it is recommended to analyze the problem statement in hand and then choose the right framework for your project. Besides the already developed frameworks that are spreading their roots deeper in the market and new frameworks are continually developed. So there will always be new choices for your project to learn and work with.
Now we have seen some of the important front end frameworks, let’s look at some of the frequently asked questions related to the same.
Q1) Is Django a front end framework?
Ans 1) Django is a collection of Python libs that allows to quickly and efficiently create a quality Web application, and is suitable for both frontend and backend.
Q2) Which front end framework is in demand?
Ans 2) As per the stack overflow developer survey, ReactJS is one of the most wanted and desired frameworks. It is the preferred choice as it gives developers the ability to work with virtual DOM,
Q3) Is React front end?
Ans 3) React is one of the most used front end libraries for front end development.
Q4) Who uses front end frameworks?
Ans 4) Front end frameworks are used by web developers to make sleek, user friendly user interfaces of the website.