Alternatives to WebGL logo

Alternatives to WebGL

OpenGL, HTML5, D3.js, three.js, and WebAssembly are the most popular alternatives and competitors to WebGL.
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What is WebGL and what are its top alternatives?

It is integrated completely into all the web standards of the browser allowing GPU accelerated usage of physics and image processing and effects as part of the web page canvas. Its elements can be mixed with other HTML elements.
WebGL is a tool in the Javascript UI Libraries category of a tech stack.

Top Alternatives to WebGL

  • OpenGL
    OpenGL

    It is a cross-language, cross-platform application programming interface for rendering 2D and 3D vector graphics. The API is typically used to interact with a graphics processing unit, to achieve hardware-accelerated rendering. ...

  • HTML5
    HTML5

    HTML5 is a core technology markup language of the Internet used for structuring and presenting content for the World Wide Web. As of October 2014 this is the final and complete fifth revision of the HTML standard of the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C). The previous version, HTML 4, was standardised in 1997. ...

  • D3.js
    D3.js

    It is a JavaScript library for manipulating documents based on data. Emphasises on web standards gives you the full capabilities of modern browsers without tying yourself to a proprietary framework. ...

  • three.js
    three.js

    It is a cross-browser JavaScript library and Application Programming Interface used to create and display animated 3D computer graphics in a web browser. ...

  • WebAssembly
    WebAssembly

    It is an open standard that defines a portable binary code format for executable programs, and a corresponding textual assembly language, as well as interfaces for facilitating interactions between such programs and their host environment. ...

  • jQuery
    jQuery

    jQuery is a cross-platform JavaScript library designed to simplify the client-side scripting of HTML. ...

  • React
    React

    Lots of people use React as the V in MVC. Since React makes no assumptions about the rest of your technology stack, it's easy to try it out on a small feature in an existing project. ...

  • AngularJS
    AngularJS

    AngularJS lets you write client-side web applications as if you had a smarter browser. It lets you use good old HTML (or HAML, Jade and friends!) as your template language and lets you extend HTML’s syntax to express your application’s components clearly and succinctly. It automatically synchronizes data from your UI (view) with your JavaScript objects (model) through 2-way data binding. ...

WebGL alternatives & related posts

OpenGL logo

OpenGL

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An environment for developing 2D and 3D graphics applications
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      HTML5 logo

      HTML5

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        New doctype
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        Local storage
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        Canvas
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        Semantic header and footer
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        Video element
      • 120
        Geolocation
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        Form autofocus
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        Email inputs
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        Editable content
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        Application caches
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        Easy to use
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        Cleaner Code
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        Semantical
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        Easy
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        Websockets
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        Better
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        Modern
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        Audio element
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        Content focused
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        Compatible
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        Portability
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        Semantic Header and Footer, Geolocation, New Doctype
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      Jonathan Pugh
      Software Engineer / Project Manager / Technical Architect · | 25 upvotes · 1.7M views

      I needed to choose a full stack of tools for cross platform mobile application design & development. After much research and trying different tools, these are what I came up with that work for me today:

      For the client coding I chose Framework7 because of its performance, easy learning curve, and very well designed, beautiful UI widgets. I think it's perfect for solo development or small teams. I didn't like React Native. It felt heavy to me and rigid. Framework7 allows the use of #CSS3, which I think is the best technology to come out of the #WWW movement. No other tech has been able to allow designers and developers to develop such flexible, high performance, customisable user interface elements that are highly responsive and hardware accelerated before. Now #CSS3 includes variables and flexboxes it is truly a powerful language and there is no longer a need for preprocessors such as #SCSS / #Sass / #less. React Native contains a very limited interpretation of #CSS3 which I found very frustrating after using #CSS3 for some years already and knowing its powerful features. The other very nice feature of Framework7 is that you can even build for the browser if you want your app to be available for desktop web browsers. The latest release also includes the ability to build for #Electron so you can have MacOS, Windows and Linux desktop apps. This is not possible with React Native yet.

      Framework7 runs on top of Apache Cordova. Cordova and webviews have been slated as being slow in the past. Having a game developer background I found the tweeks to make it run as smooth as silk. One of those tweeks is to use WKWebView. Another important one was using srcset on images.

      I use #Template7 for the for the templating system which is a no-nonsense mobile-centric #HandleBars style extensible templating system. It's easy to write custom helpers for, is fast and has a small footprint. I'm not forced into a new paradigm or learning some new syntax. It operates with standard JavaScript, HTML5 and CSS 3. It's written by the developer of Framework7 and so dovetails with it as expected.

      I configured TypeScript to work with the latest version of Framework7. I consider TypeScript to be one of the best creations to come out of Microsoft in some time. They must have an amazing team working on it. It's very powerful and flexible. It helps you catch a lot of bugs and also provides code completion in supporting IDEs. So for my IDE I use Visual Studio Code which is a blazingly fast and silky smooth editor that integrates seamlessly with TypeScript for the ultimate type checking setup (both products are produced by Microsoft).

      I use Webpack and Babel to compile the JavaScript. TypeScript can compile to JavaScript directly but Babel offers a few more options and polyfills so you can use the latest (and even prerelease) JavaScript features today and compile to be backwards compatible with virtually any browser. My favorite recent addition is "optional chaining" which greatly simplifies and increases readability of a number of sections of my code dealing with getting and setting data in nested objects.

      I use some Ruby scripts to process images with ImageMagick and pngquant to optimise for size and even auto insert responsive image code into the HTML5. Ruby is the ultimate cross platform scripting language. Even as your scripts become large, Ruby allows you to refactor your code easily and make it Object Oriented if necessary. I find it the quickest and easiest way to maintain certain aspects of my build process.

      For the user interface design and prototyping I use Figma. Figma has an almost identical user interface to #Sketch but has the added advantage of being cross platform (MacOS and Windows). Its real-time collaboration features are outstanding and I use them a often as I work mostly on remote projects. Clients can collaborate in real-time and see changes I make as I make them. The clickable prototyping features in Figma are also very well designed and mean I can send clickable prototypes to clients to try user interface updates as they are made and get immediate feedback. I'm currently also evaluating the latest version of #AdobeXD as an alternative to Figma as it has the very cool auto-animate feature. It doesn't have real-time collaboration yet, but I heard it is proposed for 2019.

      For the UI icons I use Font Awesome Pro. They have the largest selection and best looking icons you can find on the internet with several variations in styles so you can find most of the icons you want for standard projects.

      For the backend I was using the #GraphCool Framework. As I later found out, #GraphQL still has some way to go in order to provide the full power of a mature graph query language so later in my project I ripped out #GraphCool and replaced it with CouchDB and Pouchdb. Primarily so I could provide good offline app support. CouchDB with Pouchdb is very flexible and efficient combination and overcomes some of the restrictions I found in #GraphQL and hence #GraphCool also. The most impressive and important feature of CouchDB is its replication. You can configure it in various ways for backups, fault tolerance, caching or conditional merging of databases. CouchDB and Pouchdb even supports storing, retrieving and serving binary or image data or other mime types. This removes a level of complexity usually present in database implementations where binary or image data is usually referenced through an #HTML5 link. With CouchDB and Pouchdb apps can operate offline and sync later, very efficiently, when the network connection is good.

      I use PhoneGap when testing the app. It auto-reloads your app when its code is changed and you can also install it on Android phones to preview your app instantly. iOS is a bit more tricky cause of Apple's policies so it's not available on the App Store, but you can build it and install it yourself to your device.

      So that's my latest mobile stack. What tools do you use? Have you tried these ones?

      See more
      Jeyabalaji Subramanian

      At FundsCorner, when we set out to pick up the front-end tech stack (around Dec 2017), we drove our decision based on the following considerations:

      (1) We were clear that we will NOT have a hybrid app. We will start with Responsive Web & once there is traction, we will rollout our Android App. However, we wanted to ensure that the users have a consistent experience on both the Web & the App. So, the front-end framework must also have a material design component library which we can choose from.

      (2) Before joining FundsCorner as a CTO, I had already worked with Angular. I enjoyed working with Angular, but I felt that I must choose something that will provide us with the fastest time from Concept to Reality.

      (3) I am strong proponent of segregating HTML & JavaScript. I.e. I was not for writing or generating HTML through JavaScript. Because, this will mean that the Front-end developers I have to hire will always be very strong on JavaScript alongside HTML5 & CSS. I was looking for a Framework that was on JavaScript but not HEAVY on JavaScript.

      (3) The first iteration of the web app was to be done by myself. But I was clear that when someone takes up the mantle, they will be able to come up the curve fast.

      In the end, Vue.js and Vuetify satisfied all the above criteria with aplomb! When I did our first POC on Vue.js I could not believe that front-end development could be this fast. The documentation was par excellence and all the required essentials that come along with the Framework (viz. Routing, Store, Validations) etc. were available from the same community! It was also a breeze to integrate with other JavaScript libraries (such as Amazon Cognito).

      By picking Vuetify, we were able to provide a consistent UI experience between our Web App and Native App, besides making the UI development ultra blazing fast!

      In the end, we were able to rollout our Web App in record 6 weeks (that included the end to end Loan Origination flow, Loans management system & Customer engagement module). www.jeyabalaji.com

      See more
      D3.js logo

      D3.js

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        Large set of examples
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        Data-driven documents
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        Visualization components
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        Transitions
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        Dynamic properties
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        Plugins
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        Exhaustive
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      Shared insights
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      Plotly.jsPlotly.jsD3.jsD3.js
      at

      We use Plotly (just their open source stuff) for Zulip's user-facing and admin-facing statistics graphs because it's a reasonably well-designed JavaScript graphing library.

      If you've tried using D3.js, it's a pretty poor developer experience, and that translates to spending a bunch of time getting the graphs one wants even for things that are conceptually pretty basic. Plotly isn't amazing (it's decent), but it's way better than than D3 unless you have very specialized needs.

      See more

      I'm a student, and I have a project to build an application (Visual analytics tool) that takes a Microsoft Excel file, cleans the data, and visualizes it. Also, the app should allow the user to filter and interact with it.

      1- should I make it desktop application or web application? : I'm leaning toward (desktop)

      2- D3.js OR Python?

      3- better excel or CSV?

      I'm a beginner Inspiration for interaction and look of the app: eventflow application.

      See more
      three.js logo

      three.js

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      A JavaScript 3D library
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          Shared insights
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          BabylonJSBabylonJSthree.jsthree.jsUnityUnity

          We already have an existing 3d interactive application for windows, mac, and iOS devices and have planned to move that app to the web for high availability to different types of users. I have been searching for different options for it. Our existing application is made in Unity so we prefer to work on unity webgl but it also has its drawbacks. Other than that we are also thinking to change the tech stack to three.js or BabylonJS due to their high compatibility with the web ecosystem. I want to know which engine/library/framework we should use for the development of our 3d web application. Also with unity webgl, we want to develop all UI parts in web technologies only and will use the unity3d for 3d part only.

          Points that are very important to consider - 1. Memory optimization and allocation 2. Quality 3. Shaders 4. Materials 5. Lighting 6. Mesh editing, mesh creation at runtime 7. Ar 8. Vr 10. Support on different browsers including mobile browsers 11. Physics(gravity, collision, cloth simulation, etc.) 12. Initial load time 13. Speed and performance 14. Max vertices count. What happens when we load models exceeding max vertex count? 15. Development time 16. Learning curve (Unity3d we already working on) 17. Ease of use. What artists can do using any platform eg. in unity3d, artists can edit materials, set up lighting etc? 18. Future scope 19. Scalability 20. Integration with web ecosystem

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          Shared insights
          on
          WebGLWebGLthree.jsthree.js

          I want a advice on what to use as a beginner three.js or WebGL?

          See more
          WebAssembly logo

          WebAssembly

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          A binary instruction format for a stack-based virtual machine
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            jQuery logo

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              Because of Ajax request :)
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              Used everywhere
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              Widely Used
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            Kir Shatrov
            Engineering Lead at Shopify · | 21 upvotes · 669.8K views

            The client-side stack of Shopify Admin has been a long journey. It started with HTML templates, jQuery and Prototype. We moved to Batman.js, our in-house Single-Page-Application framework (SPA), in 2013. Then, we re-evaluated our approach and moved back to statically rendered HTML and vanilla JavaScript. As the front-end ecosystem matured, we felt that it was time to rethink our approach again. Last year, we started working on moving Shopify Admin to React and TypeScript.

            Many things have changed since the days of jQuery and Batman. JavaScript execution is much faster. We can easily render our apps on the server to do less work on the client, and the resources and tooling for developers are substantially better with React than we ever had with Batman.

            #FrameworksFullStack #Languages

            See more
            Ganesa Vijayakumar
            Full Stack Coder | Technical Lead · | 19 upvotes · 2.8M views

            I'm planning to create a web application and also a mobile application to provide a very good shopping experience to the end customers. Shortly, my application will be aggregate the product details from difference sources and giving a clear picture to the user that when and where to buy that product with best in Quality and cost.

            I have planned to develop this in many milestones for adding N number of features and I have picked my first part to complete the core part (aggregate the product details from different sources).

            As per my work experience and knowledge, I have chosen the followings stacks to this mission.

            UI: I would like to develop this application using React, React Router and React Native since I'm a little bit familiar on this and also most importantly these will help on developing both web and mobile apps. In addition, I'm gonna use the stacks JavaScript, jQuery, jQuery UI, jQuery Mobile, Bootstrap wherever required.

            Service: I have planned to use Java as the main business layer language as I have 7+ years of experience on this I believe I can do better work using Java than other languages. In addition, I'm thinking to use the stacks Node.js.

            Database and ORM: I'm gonna pick MySQL as DB and Hibernate as ORM since I have a piece of good knowledge and also work experience on this combination.

            Search Engine: I need to deal with a large amount of product data and it's in-detailed info to provide enough details to end user at the same time I need to focus on the performance area too. so I have decided to use Solr as a search engine for product search and suggestions. In addition, I'm thinking to replace Solr by Elasticsearch once explored/reviewed enough about Elasticsearch.

            Host: As of now, my plan to complete the application with decent features first and deploy it in a free hosting environment like Docker and Heroku and then once it is stable then I have planned to use the AWS products Amazon S3, EC2, Amazon RDS and Amazon Route 53. I'm not sure about Microsoft Azure that what is the specialty in it than Heroku and Amazon EC2 Container Service. Anyhow, I will do explore these once again and pick the best suite one for my requirement once I reached this level.

            Build and Repositories: I have decided to choose Apache Maven and Git as these are my favorites and also so popular on respectively build and repositories.

            Additional Utilities :) - I would like to choose Codacy for code review as their Startup plan will be very helpful to this application. I'm already experienced with Google CheckStyle and SonarQube even I'm looking something on Codacy.

            Happy Coding! Suggestions are welcome! :)

            Thanks, Ganesa

            See more
            React logo

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              Virtual dom
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              Performance
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              Simplicity
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              Composable
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              Data flow
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              Declarative
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              Isn't an mvc framework
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              Reactive updates
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              Explicit app state
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              JSX
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              Learn once, write everywhere
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              Uni-directional data flow
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              Easy to Use
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              Works great with Flux Architecture
            • 10
              Great perfomance
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              Built by Facebook
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              Javascript
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              Speed
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              TypeScript support
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              Feels like the 90s
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              Awesome
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              Scalable
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              Easy to start
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              Props
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              Functional
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              Scales super well
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              Excellent Documentation
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              Cross-platform
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              Very gentle learning curve
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              Super easy
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              Has arrow functions
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              Requires discipline to keep architecture organized
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            Adebayo Akinlaja
            Engineering Manager at Andela · | 27 upvotes · 1.1M views

            I picked up an idea to develop and it was no brainer I had to go with React for the frontend. I was faced with challenges when it came to what component framework to use. I had worked extensively with Material-UI but I needed something different that would offer me wider range of well customized components (I became pretty slow at styling). I brought in Evergreen after several sampling and reads online but again, after several prototype development against Evergreen—since I was using TypeScript and I had to import custom Type, it felt exhaustive. After I validated Evergreen with the designs of the idea I was developing, I also noticed I might have to do a lot of styling. I later stumbled on Material Kit, the one specifically made for React . It was promising with beautifully crafted components, most of which fits into the designs pages I had on ground.

            A major problem of Material Kit for me is it isn't written in TypeScript and there isn't any plans to support its TypeScript version. I rolled up my sleeve and started converting their components to TypeScript and if you'll ask me, I am still on it.

            In summary, I used the Create React App with TypeScript support and I am spending some time converting Material Kit to TypeScript before I start developing against it. All of these components are going to be hosted on Bit.

            If you feel I am crazy or I have gotten something wrong, I'll be willing to listen to your opinion. Also, if you want to have a share of whatever TypeScript version of Material Kit I end up coming up with, let me know.

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            AngularJS logo

            AngularJS

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              Clean and keeps code readable
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              Easy for small applications
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              One of the best frameworks
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              I do not touch DOM
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              Be a developer, not a plumber.
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              Declarative programming
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              Dart
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              Community
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              The two-way Data Binding is awesome
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              Very very useful and fast framework for development
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              Readable code
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            Simon Reymann
            Senior Fullstack Developer at QUANTUSflow Software GmbH · | 25 upvotes · 2.5M views

            Our whole Node.js backend stack consists of the following tools:

            • Lerna as a tool for multi package and multi repository management
            • npm as package manager
            • NestJS as Node.js framework
            • TypeScript as programming language
            • ExpressJS as web server
            • Swagger UI for visualizing and interacting with the API’s resources
            • Postman as a tool for API development
            • TypeORM as object relational mapping layer
            • JSON Web Token for access token management

            The main reason we have chosen Node.js over PHP is related to the following artifacts:

            • Made for the web and widely in use: Node.js is a software platform for developing server-side network services. Well-known projects that rely on Node.js include the blogging software Ghost, the project management tool Trello and the operating system WebOS. Node.js requires the JavaScript runtime environment V8, which was specially developed by Google for the popular Chrome browser. This guarantees a very resource-saving architecture, which qualifies Node.js especially for the operation of a web server. Ryan Dahl, the developer of Node.js, released the first stable version on May 27, 2009. He developed Node.js out of dissatisfaction with the possibilities that JavaScript offered at the time. The basic functionality of Node.js has been mapped with JavaScript since the first version, which can be expanded with a large number of different modules. The current package managers (npm or Yarn) for Node.js know more than 1,000,000 of these modules.
            • Fast server-side solutions: Node.js adopts the JavaScript "event-loop" to create non-blocking I/O applications that conveniently serve simultaneous events. With the standard available asynchronous processing within JavaScript/TypeScript, highly scalable, server-side solutions can be realized. The efficient use of the CPU and the RAM is maximized and more simultaneous requests can be processed than with conventional multi-thread servers.
            • A language along the entire stack: Widely used frameworks such as React or AngularJS or Vue.js, which we prefer, are written in JavaScript/TypeScript. If Node.js is now used on the server side, you can use all the advantages of a uniform script language throughout the entire application development. The same language in the back- and frontend simplifies the maintenance of the application and also the coordination within the development team.
            • Flexibility: Node.js sets very few strict dependencies, rules and guidelines and thus grants a high degree of flexibility in application development. There are no strict conventions so that the appropriate architecture, design structures, modules and features can be freely selected for the development.
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            Simon Reymann
            Senior Fullstack Developer at QUANTUSflow Software GmbH · | 22 upvotes · 1.1M views

            Our whole Vue.js frontend stack (incl. SSR) consists of the following tools:

            • Nuxt.js consisting of Vue CLI, Vue Router, vuex, Webpack and Sass (Bundler for HTML5, CSS 3), Babel (Transpiler for JavaScript),
            • Vue Styleguidist as our style guide and pool of developed Vue.js components
            • Vuetify as Material Component Framework (for fast app development)
            • TypeScript as programming language
            • Apollo / GraphQL (incl. GraphiQL) for data access layer (https://apollo.vuejs.org/)
            • ESLint, TSLint and Prettier for coding style and code analyzes
            • Jest as testing framework
            • Google Fonts and Font Awesome for typography and icon toolkit
            • NativeScript-Vue for mobile development

            The main reason we have chosen Vue.js over React and AngularJS is related to the following artifacts:

            • Empowered HTML. Vue.js has many similar approaches with Angular. This helps to optimize HTML blocks handling with the use of different components.
            • Detailed documentation. Vue.js has very good documentation which can fasten learning curve for developers.
            • Adaptability. It provides a rapid switching period from other frameworks. It has similarities with Angular and React in terms of design and architecture.
            • Awesome integration. Vue.js can be used for both building single-page applications and more difficult web interfaces of apps. Smaller interactive parts can be easily integrated into the existing infrastructure with no negative effect on the entire system.
            • Large scaling. Vue.js can help to develop pretty large reusable templates.
            • Tiny size. Vue.js weights around 20KB keeping its speed and flexibility. It allows reaching much better performance in comparison to other frameworks.
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