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Top Javascript Frameworks and Trends in 2020

With a fast-growing MEAN stack for web and mobile applications, Javascript is becoming the first choice for developers. It is the favorite technology for most professional developers (71.5% in 2018 and 69.7% in 2019), according to the Stack Overflow survey report. Let’s now look at the emerging trends and Javascript applications that are shaping for 2020.

Javascript Trends 2020 Overview

All modern browsers support Javascript and that’s why over 10400 companies in the world use Javascript in their stacks, according to stackshare.io. Here’s an overview of rising Javascript trends for 2020.

  1. Booming TypeScript: It is a superset of Javascript and existing JS programs function smoothly on TypeScript.
  2. In 2018, Vue.JS surpassed React, but since 2019, React is getting back its momentum.
  3. Framework independent web components are growing rapidly.
  4. Developers are considering modular and reusable components.
  5. Angular 7 is on the rise with new interesting features.
  6. More focus on solution-driven APIs through GraphQL.

TypeScript is designed by Microsoft to expand Javascript capabilities. Developers love TypeScript because of fewer bugs, easy to read codes, and self-documentation feature. Visit Github for TypeScript resources.

Top Javascript Frameworks in 2020

Although we see growing traction for framework-agnostic components, the demand for simple and scalable frameworks is still intact. Let’s look at the top 3 frontend and backend JS Frameworks.

The Top 3 Javascript Frameworks for Frontend Development

#1 Angular 7

AngularJS is a Javascript-based, open-source frontend framework developed by Google. Since its release in 2010, there have been several releases to make AngularJS more user-friendly and effective for web development. Following are some of the exceptional features that make Angular 7 even more desirable.

  1. Styling with CSS, SCSS, LESS using ng new / ng add commands.
  2. Virtual scrolling is now possible with ScrollingModule.
  3. Sorting and moving elements between the list has become simpler with the new DragDropModule function.
  4. Using TypeScript, Angular 7 has updated and enhanced dependencies.

#2 React

Facebook introduced React in 2013 and it has been trending for the last four years. Although last year’s release did not include any major release (just minor bug fixes in React DOM and Is), it still boasts of its biggest knowledgebase, support, and community. The following are the reasons for the popularity of React among developers – 

  1. Native UI: HTML 5 UI comes with several compromises in terms of intuitive user experience. React brings forth a new and highly functional approach to constructing user interfaces. In other words, the application UI is simply the function of the current application state.
  2. Component-based approach: It allows building encapsulated components that can be assembled to make complex UIs.

Also read – What is React Native Framework: An In-depth Study

#3 Ionic

Ionic is a framework to build and deploy cross-platform (android, native iOS, web) apps. Developers prefer this framework especially because of its intuitive UI components. Apart from simple CLI, and impressive icons, the best features that Ionic delivers are – 

  1. Deeplinking – it allows loading a specific view on the app from a web link.
  2. AoT Compiling – to load apps at a lightning-fast speed.
  3. Live Reload – to compile and redeploy apps at every stage of development.

The Top 3 Javascript Frameworks for Backend Development

#1 Express 

Express is one of the four components of the rapidly growing MEAN stack (MongoDB, Express, AngularJS, and Node.js). Developers prefer this framework for building APIs and web applications because of its robustness and minimalism. There have been 7 releases to upgrade the performance of the Express framework and no doubt, it retains the position of trending javascript frameworks even for 2019-20.

Express is one of the oldest active Javascript framework since 2010 and is termed as a standard server framework for Node.js.

#2 Next.js

It is a small framework particularly for developing applications in React. Next.js allows developing complex applications with minimal coding. This year, React and Next.js are going hand-in-hand. The growing popularity of React is driving developers’ inclination towards using Next.js. Its key features are – 

  1. Allows building universal JS applications that are compatible with any server or device.
  2. Irrespective of the data source, server rendering is easier in Next.js.
  3. It has in-built styling but also works with every CSS-in-JS solution.

#3 Meteor

It is an open-source isomorphic (applications that run on both client and server) javascript framework. Meteor has grown exponentially since its release in 2012. Its key features are-

  1. Compact code: It has an integrated Javascript stack that allows writing compact codes. For instance, a 1000 lines of code can be written in just 10 lines in Meteor.
  2. Hot push: It allows new feature releases without app store approval or users having to download the native app again.
  3. Technology integration: It allows integrating popular frameworks and tools. Thus, utilizing the best features from other tech stacks/frameworks.

Special mention: GraphQL

GraphQL is a query language for APIs and provides a runtime environment for fulfilling queries. It is developed by Facebook and is a star performer in the Github community. Also, many developers believe — GraphQL can replace REST APIs very soon. 

GraphQL addresses the following data issues-

  1. It gets all the necessary data to the client via a single request to the server.
  2. The client can communicate in a universal query language. Thus, the server need not specify the structure and composition of the returned data.
  3. It follows a declarative approach of describing the data requirements for the interface. Here, the focus is more on “what” rather than “how” making the information retrieval process simpler.

What about Node.js?

Node.js is the most popular Javascript-based runtime environment for MEAN stack. One should not confuse it with frameworks. It allows developers to use Javascript on both front and backend. Its resourceful APIs make backend development easier. It is a great choice for developing real-time and collaborative applications to date.

Probably, you’ll be interested to know what has changed in Javascript technology over the past few years. Take a look at the past trends-

  1. Javascript Trends 2019
  2. Javascript Trends 2018
  3. Javascript Trends 2017

Bonus – Top trending React Libraries of 2019!

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Apple WWDC 2021, Facebook f8, Microsoft Build: What’s in it for Developers and Consumers this year

14 minutes read

Apple WWDC 2021 is the second all-virtual conference hosted by the company this year, one that will see both hardware announcements and software updates. WWDC 2021, which begins June 7 with the traditional Apple keynote will run the whole week long and will contain pavilions, daily recaps available to revisit, and more in this free-for-all developers virtual meet. 

WWDC 2021 is bringing big changes to iOS 15 and iPad OS 15, along with a new more powerful M2 chip and a redesigned MacBook Pro that gets rid of its maligned features like the Touch Bar, to re-introduce the HDMI port and MagSafe. 

Apple CEO Tim Cook began the keynote address welcoming “familiar” faces back again in the audience, virtual avatars aka Memoji instead of real people, given the ongoing pandemic. 

ALSO READ: Google I/O 2021: What’s in it for Developers and Consumers this Year

Here’s everything we noticed at the Apple WWDC 2021 keynote: 

iOS 15 

The new iOS update will come with a series of improvements including a better Facetime experience. FaceTime will now include features like Spatial Audio making calls more comfortable and natural, like you and the person on the other end are in the same room. The mic gets a Voice Isolation update, which, through the use of Machine Learning will block ambient noise and prioritize your voice. Another noticeable update is Wide Spectrum, to capture your voice and everything around you.  

The software update also introduces Portrait mode to blur backgrounds, and a grid view to enable multi-conversations with a highlighted tile to know who the speaker is. Users can also schedule individual FaceTime calls with Facetime links, similar to Zoom. Additionally, users can share their screen, music, TV show, or movie through a new feature called ShareTime, to enable a Watch Party of their own. FaceTime will, with this update, be supported on Android and Windows through a web browser.

iMessage, the messaging platform, available only on Apple devices, will now come with features that group similar images into galleries. A brand-new feature called “shared with you” will save links that people sent you and collects them in one place. It works across Safari, Apple Music, Apple TV, and Apple Podcasts.

ALSO READ: Here’s what a tech-enabled world will look like for future pandemic phases

Notifications will now have an updated design on the lock screen, featuring a clearer look. Titled the Focus feature, users can choose to go on Do Not Disturb mode or choose Work, Life hours to be able to receive notifications depending on their preferences, much like the OnePlus Zen Mode and Work-Life Balance feature that came with the OnePlus 7 series in 2019. 

Live Text, a new camera feature, will automatically identify and scan text or visuals in photographs. Another feature called Memories will use Machine Learning and AI to combine photos into galleries and add music from Apple Music. 

Apple Maps software is also updated with 3D data with this release. It now includes lanes, clearer city details, AR-led detailed directions, and more. The Weather app gets an interactive update where data and layout will change according to weather conditions. 

A new feature is also coming to AirPods called “conversation boost” which will help people better understand who they are talking to in real-time. Siri will be able to announce messages and read out your shopping list as well. Apple Wallet adds a new functionality which now includes corporate badges.

Quicknote is a fast and easy way to get to a note saved for later, while also allowing a user to jot notes using the Apple Pencil. Consumers can now add tags to organize their notes better and even mention others in shared notes.  

With iPadOS 15, Apple is adding features for multi-tasking, bringing widgets and app library to the iPad as well. Apple has also announced an iCloud+ subscription service with a focus on privacy. 

Privacy and Security: 

New privacy features, and a subscription-based iCloud+ was also announced at the keynote. Apple is now adding new privacy features across its devices. The Mail App, for instance, will have a feature called tracker-blockers to hide your IP address, location and other information that help building a digital personality for third-party apps. An App Tracker Report section in the Settings will allow users to see how often apps have used their info in the last seven days.

iCloud+ will also include a key feature called Private Relay, which essentially helps route web traffic through two separate servers, just like VPN.

Siri, on the other hand, has some new features including availability on third-party apps, and users can also request tasks from the Voice Assistant without an active internet connection. 

Speaking of legacy contacts, Apple has introduced a Digital Legacy Program that will help your trusted contacts to manage your account, close them et al, even when you’re no longer around. 

Digital Health: 

The latest Apple Watch software allows more interaction possibilities while also connecting health trackers that monitors everything from your gait to the sleep patterns via the Breathe app called Mindfulness and let’s you know as soon as it finds something out of the ordinary which can be addressed promptly. This is possible through Apple’s collaboration with a few electronic health record companies. If you’re away from your loved ones, the new software allows you to share health data too. 

New watch faces on Watch OS8 are available in Portrait mode and one also has the ability to write a text with their finger to send a text message. 

ALSO READ: What will ‘Behavioural Changes’ Mean for India’s Digital Health Future

Additionally, in the Workouts app, new workout types including TaiChi and Pilates have been added guided by popular names such as Jeanette Jenkins as well as a new Artist Spotlight series that offers workouts on the music of Lady Gaga, Keith Urban, and more.

macOS Monterey: 

At the WWDC 2021 keynote address last night, Apple announced a new version of macOS. Titled Monterey, after the pristine beach town in California’s central coast, the new macOS brings a number of features including multiple screen-usage while using the same mouse and keyboard across a Mac or an iPad. This feature is called Universal Control. 

iOS devices can (for the first time) beam their screen to a Mac, thanks to AirPlay. The Safari web browser has also got a redesign with new and improved features including tab grouping and tab bookmarking. 

What piqued your interest the most at this year’s Apple WWDC? Facebook f8, held earlier this month also had a few interesting announcements. Take a look. 

WIIFM at Facebook f8? 

Facebook f8, held on June 2 this year kicked off with a promise that Facebook was returning to its roots and focusing on the developer community for this year’s virtual event. 

“This year we are refocusing F8 on developers,” Mark Zuckerberg said. “Some of the most important services in the world started when someone looked at an existing issue, and just found a better way to build. And I’m optimistic that some of the next generation of services are going to start right here with you.”  

On the business messaging front, Facebook announced that its Messenger API for Instagram is available to all developers. The social media giant is also testing a way for people to opt into messaging with businesses through a new feature called Login Connect with Messenger. 

Through WhatsApp Business API, it’s now easier for businesses to get started with using the tool effectively for their businesses. Among its key updates, Facebook said it has reduced the entire API onboarding process from weeks to five minutes. The company also announced new WhatsApp messaging features with an aim to give people a quicker way to make a selection when interacting with a business’s chatbot on WhatsApp. 

Augmented Reality, AI and Machine Learning: 

Facebook’s development of its futuristic augmented reality glasses is still ongoing, but the company has exhibited broad ambitions in terms of its AR experiences built on its SparkAR software. In the near future, Facebook has said that it wants to make it easier for developers to build augmented reality effects for group calls via its new Multipeer API.  

The SparkAR platform now has 600,000 creators in 190 countries, with 2 million AR filters and effects created to date, according to Facebook. 

PyTorch, the deep learning framework co-developed by Facebook in 2016, is now becoming the default framework for building all its AI and machine learning models in the foreseeable future. 

“PyTorch not only makes our research and engineering work more effective, collaborative, and efficient, it also allows us to share our work as open-source PyTorch libraries and learn from the advances made by the thousands of PyTorch developers all over the world,” Facebook said in a blog post. 

Missed Microsoft Build? Here are key highlights tailor-made for you: 

Microsoft Build, also a developer conference, was also held virtually this year from May 25 to 27. 

Following his keynote address, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella wrote on a LinkedIn post, “As computing becomes embedded in every aspect of our lives, there will be no longer such thing as the tech sector. The world will be transformed through tech intensity at scale. Every organization will need to not only adopt the latest technology, but more importantly, build their own unique digital technology, or be left behind.”

“We are building the platform for platform creators. It’s not about setting new rules or constraints that dictate how or what you should build. It’s not even about celebrating our own innovation. It’s about enabling your innovation and creating new opportunities for you,” he continued. 

From Microsoft Teams that allows users to complete projects from any location and at any time without needing to switch across different apps and data, to Windows Updates providing GUI support on Windows Subsystem for Linux (WSL), it will also allow seamless integrations with other workflows with Linux, GUI apps, and GPU-accelerated ML training.

In terms of privacy and security, Microsoft announced the integration of its Azure Security Center with GitHub. This integration will further enhance collaboration between the development and security teams. Interestingly, this collaborative effort will feature an update to enable security teams to be aware of the holistic development life-cycle instead of trying and fixing bugs only once the software is released. This measure will further allow the DevSecOps teams to run vulnerability scans, resolve findings, and visualize the security of workflows within their CI/CD pipeline.

The company also announced key updates to its Azure AI services, including Azure Bot Services, Azure Video Analyzer, and more. That’s not all, Microsoft also announced ML capabilities updates to accelerate its AI model deployment, namely Azure Machine Learning Managed Endpoints and Power Fx.

Automatic Aggregations was yet another feature that debuted at MS Build this year. Power BI dataflows that suitably handle streaming data sources, starting with Azure Event Hubs and Azure IoT Hubs, promises to make streaming data and real-time analytics accessible. 

Microsoft also introduced a low-code programming tool that allows users to write code without any prior coding knowledge. Called Power App Ideas, is the first-of-its-kind collaborative effort between Microsoft and artificial intelligence (AI) research company OpenAI. The app uses OpenAI’s Generative Pre-Trained Transformer-3 (GPT-3) AI model, among one of the highly advanced natural language AI models in the world today. 

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