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What can you do with Javascript? A lot!

Table of Contents

What is Javascript?

One should know that Javascript has not always been the cool kid we pictured. It took a while, lots of meetings and people talking in dark rooms, to decide where the language would have gone and how it would have evolved.

Not many years ago the only thing you could do with Javascript was just web programming, and it wasn't all that great. From that bad experience was born what some of you oldies might remember as flash or ActionScript.

The Javascript experience was so behind that it helped in shaping what for many years would be, in its own way, the defacto standard for web applications programming. That, again, would be ActionScript, as reported above.

Javascript by Illuminati

Years passed and so the language evolved into what we know and love today, ES6. The amazing journey of Javascript took a very versatile and easy to learn language to the pinnacle of programming languages usage in 2022.

Some people dislike the Javascript language features, some others are not bothered by the freedom the language gives you, but this freedom comes at a cost, both in terms of performance and by letting users to be more prone to error.

To suffice, Typescript was born, a superset language born from Javascript and evolving it with the addition of types and compilation time controls.

If you were to ask me, I'd say that the usage of Typescript depends on the size, scope and importance of the project you'd be programming; at the same time, there are some javascript players that would rather use Typescript everywhere, no matter the project.

I'm not one for langwars so I'll tell you this: dwtfyw. The translation of the acronym is left to the reader as an exercise of good thinking! If you want to let me know that you understood what I meant, write a tweet about it and I'll cheer on you!

404answernotfound University

As an alternative, you might want to listen to my 404answernotfound Podcast on Spotify as you might catch me saying it from time to time.

The possibilities of Javascript

Back to the topic at hand, I'd like to entertain you with this post about the possibilities of Javascript and what you can build with it.

Lately I had a lot of talks with friendly folks over Twitter and one of the most important and repeated questions I received was about what Javascript can be used for and how someone, no matter the level, could take full advantage of its features.

There is no simple or short answer to this matter so I think that we should start with a short list and then have fun demistifying what the lingo around these choices is about and how we can start to build new projects with Javascript.

  1. Front End Development
  2. Back End Development
  3. Mobile Applications
  4. IoT Development
  5. Cloud / Infrastracture Development
  6. Robotics
  7. Artificial Intelligence
  8. Linguistics and Natural Language Processing (NLP)
  9. Statistical Modelling and Data Analysis
  10. Embedded Systems
  11. Low Code Systems
  12. Vendors' APIs (Microsoft 365)
  13. Game Development
  14. Automation
  15. Geospatial Analysis

The list could continue and you should very well know that each of these topics is like Alice in Wonderland's rabbithole. As in The Matrix, once you take the truth pill, you can't go back.

If any of you readers already have experience with some other programming languages, especially Python, you might think that there are languages and libraries that are more suited for some of the jobs on this list, and I would agree with you.

It is true that some languages, libraries and frameworks are more mature than Javascript is in some fields, but that doesn't mean that you can't do that with Javascript.

Javascript can be used with anything

Just thinking about (1) Front End Development, there are so many things that you can build that one might be tempted to say that the only limit is your imagination.

As programmers we know that there are also hard limits (memory, resources), but that shouldn't stop you from trying and achieve what you'd like to build for your well being and betterment.

You could build websites, e-commerce solutions, plugins for known CMS (like Wordpress), components to be used by other people, libraries that other fellow programmers could use in production, AMP pages for faster loading and better SEO, CSS pre-processors, HTML parsers, markup parsers, anything really!

It is entirely up to you whether your next creation will have an impact on you, society or whatever you care about, so go out there (or well, sit at the desk or at a bar) and start building up that muscle memory to flex your Javascript skills next time we have a talk!

The goodies

Hopefully you enjoyed this and know a little bit more about Javascript usages than you did before.

Check out the Learn Javascript website or FreeCodeCamp for other great tutorials!

If you'd like to read more about Javascript and get a primer on functions, you can take a look at my previous articles about the subject:

How to learn Javascript if you've never programmed before
A primer on Javascript functions and where to find them
Javascript Projects for beginners, age 9 to 99

Happy hacking!

The goodbye

I hope you found this article useful and to your liking and if you have any requests, drop a message on one of my social media accounts or open an issue/start a discussion on github, on this repository!