Top 4 Javascript Concepts a Node.js Freelance Newbie Need to Know

Wouldn’t it be amazing if you only had to know one programming language to create a full stack application? Ryan Dahl put the idea into action and built Node.js. Node.js is a server side application based on Chrome’s strong JavaScript V8 engine. While originally written in C++, JavaScript is used for applications.

See, the dilemma has been solved. One language to rule all of them. But this also takes you to the fact that the entire application is now using the same language. That means you’ve got to have a sound knowledge of that language.

Here are the four bare minimum principles that you should be able to use Node.js effectively in operation.

  1. Non-blocking or Asynchronous I/O

Since Node.js is a server side system, one of its key operations is the handling of browser requests. In conventional I/O systems, a request can only be issued once the response (HTML page) of the previous request has been received. The server blocks other requests, called block I/O, in order to process the current request, which causes the browser to wait (the rotating circle).

Node.js is not implementing this I/O theory. If the request is intended to take longer, Node sends the request to the event loop (which I will explain in more detail in another article) and continues to the next request in the call stack. As soon as the pending request is processed, Node.js will be notified and the response will be made on the browser.

  1. Prototype

The prototype is a complicated JavaScript definition. Since you’re going to use prototypes a lot in Node.js, every JavaScript developer needs to know about this definition.

In a language that implements a classical heritage like Java or C++, you first create a class (a blueprint for your objects) and then create objects from that class or expand that class to inherit its properties.

But there is no JavaScript class definition. You first create an object in JavaScript and then add your own object or create new objects from it. This is called a prototype inheritance, meaning that objects are performed by a prototype, not by classes.

Each JavaScript object is connected to a prototype object from which it can inherit properties. Prototypes are similar to classes in other OO languages, but vary in that they are objects themselves. Any object is connected to the Object.prototype that comes predefined with JavaScript.

  1. Modules

If you’ve ever dealt with Java packages, the modules in Node.js are no different. Don’t stress if you don’t. Modules are basic JavaScript files containing code for a particular purpose. The Module Pattern is used to make your code easier to navigate and work with. To use the properties of the module, the JavaScript file must be required in the same way as the Java class packages are imported. In Node.js, there are two types of modules:

  • Core Modules – These are the ones that come pre-compiled with the Node.js library. The purpose of core modules is to provide developers with often occurring and repeating code sections that, if they were not available, would result in a tedious task for developers because they have to write the same code again and again. Some common core modules are HTTP, URL, EVENTS, FILE SYSTEM, etc.
  • User Defined Modules – User defined modules are the ones which a developer makes for a specific purpose in his/her application. These are required when the core modules are not capable of fulfilling the desired functionality.

The modules are extracted using the necessary function. If it is a key module, the statement is simply the name of the module. If it is a user defined module, the statement is the path of the module in the file system.

  1. Callbacks

In JavaScript, functions are considered to be first class objects. This means that you can do all the operations with a function that you can do with normal objects. You can assign functions to a variable, transfer them as arguments to a process, declare them as property of an entity, and even return them from a function.

Callbacks, the most commonly used functional programming paradigm, are anonymous JavaScript functions that can be passed as arguments to other functions and can be executed or returned from that function to be executed later.

When we pass a callback function as an argument to another function, we just pass the function description, i.e. we never know when the callback function will run. The timing of the execution depends solely on the call function mechanism. It’s “calling back” at a later point of time, hence the name.

This is it. These are my top four JavaScript principles that Node.js beginners would be wise to learn to be better programmers.

Source: Programmerspills


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