Guide

Trend watch: 7 keys to the future of web applications

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You’re ready for the next web experience. You’re an “early adopter” ready, and willing, to use new technologies to enhance your apps. 

But the problem with the bright, shiny (see also: distracting) new things coming to the web? You have limited time. And knowing what key trends and tools will help you create competitive and desirable products really matters. 

At Pluralsight LIVE, technology expert John Papa shared the 7 trends and technologies shaping the future of web applications. Read on to discover where you should invest in the web in 2018.  

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1. Browser compatible languages

“Everyone should be looking at Typescript and Babel going forward.” – John Papa

We’ve come along way from the days of users being left behind due to browser incompatibility. Today, tools like Typescript and Babel allow developers to leverage features of modern JavaScript across browsers while generally being low risk. 

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2. Code editors

You have a lot of options out there when it comes to choosing the best code editor. Make a decision based on what’s easy to learn and actively making improvements like VS Code, Atom, WebStorm and Vim. Ultimately, the best solution will be a code editor that your developers want to use—they’ll be most efficient with their preferred tools. 

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3. JavaScript frameworks

The million-dollar question: which framework is best for 2018 and beyond? When it comes to making the right investment, first consider the problems you’re trying to solve. Secondly, identify which framework offers the best talent pool for your organization. The three clear leaders of the talent pack are Angular, React and Vue. 

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4. Optimization

Great maintenance of web apps is they key to delivering amazing experiences, faster. Tools and methodologies like compressing code, background processing, just-in-time compiling (JIT) and browser throttle testing can help you optimize. Tree-shaking dead code (with Webpack or Gulp) will become necessarily for delivering competitive products. 

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5. Continuous deployment

“Next year [continuous deployment tools] will be required of us in 2018 because it will be easier to deploy and this technology is getting much simpler.”  – John Papa

Platforms and versions will continue to change. It’s time to leverage automation to help your team stay on track. Using Containers and continuous integration (CI) tools like Jenkins and Travis can help automate your build and deploy process.

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6. Cloud services

You knew this was coming. How can you take advantage of the millions of things the cloud can do to create better web apps? Use cloud services to reduce costs, infrastructure and time spent maintaining code. For example, get rid of API infrastructure layers in your mobile and web apps and instead use Serverless APIs. Tools like Azure Functions and AWS Lambda will help make costly and time-consuming API management much easier.

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7. Great experiences 

No matter the technology you prefer on or the feature you geek out about, the focus of your web app should be creating a great overall experience. Engage your audience and lower abandonment rates by delivering faster perceived load times, offering offline functionality, and building congruent experiences across devices. In 2018, watch for the most delightful web experiences led by Progressive Web Apps (PWAs).  

The web in 2018: Choose wisely 

Winning the web in 2018 comes down to making the right decisions for the right projects. Your choice of language, framework, platform and target device have never been more important as demand grows for seamless experiences and reliable apps. Want to hear more about web app readiness? Hear the latest straight from John

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