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What is meant by Front end and Backend

Published: 12th December 2016

So what is meant by Front End and Back End coding?

Well, it's easy to explain. On the back-end is a web server and on the Front end is the user at their computer or mobile device using a web browser.

The back end will receive a request for data such as web pages and the front end will receive the data that the server responds with and produces a web page that the user can see with their eyes on the computer or mobile device screen.

On the server (back end) we can do almost anything such as running various operating systems, data bases, and scripts. The server is a machine buzzing away under a desk or in a data center.

The front end only exists on the device of a consumer of content so they at least have HTML in a browser, and likely Javascript enabled.

Front-end developers are mostly concerned with the User Experience (UI) whereas backend developers are concerned with server-side issues.

If your preference is for art and design, you are likely to be drawn (pun?) to front-end development. But if you like mathematics and playing around with computers or are into Linux, then the backend is probably where you will have most fun.

However, some developers like myself enjoy it all and call ourselves full-stack developers. But I do tend to prefer the backend since it is nice to write simple scripts that don't need to present their output in a glorious fashion in a browser, we use the command line. But many full-stack developers may only be conversant in Javascript, HTML, and CSS since NodeJS allows them to run code on the server using Javascript.

My advice for aspiring developers would be to get familiar with all of the popular front-end and backend technologies and later work out what you want to focus on more. At least study Javascript, PHP, C#, HTML, and CSS. And for servers look at: NGINX, IIS, and Apache.