9 Replies - 676 Views - Last Post: 11 September 2015 - 08:06 AM

#1 Netroxen   User is offline

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Does this make sense, help me verify my understanding!

Posted 08 September 2015 - 12:11 PM

Ok since I'm relatively new to web development I'm trying to wrap my head around the plethora of systems and options available. What I want verification on is my understanding of all the available platforms for web developers.

So if I'm correct.

Things like Plone, WordPress and Joomla are all content delivery systems. They allow you to deliver multimedia, website management and security overhead a website framework.

Things like Boostrap, KickStart and Boilerplate are website frameworks. They offer an empty website shell with vendor specific eye-candy and functions so that you can rapidly customize and build a site without fumbling around with back-end nonsense.

A CDN is an archived network of ready-made scripts which are sourceable directly from the web without having to host them on your own system/server thereby increasing the browseable speed of a website.

JQueary/Javascript plugins can be sourced online, included within script tags in your main HTML document and referenced for added functionality on a website. Like officially released code snippets?

If I'm correct about frameworks, are there any which you can recommend that have an inherent bonus towards portfolio/picture orientated websites?

Finally, if you're hardcore you don't need any of these things and could theoretically develop a site from scratch..?

Thanks, and sorry for this absolutely n00by list of questions.

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Replies To: Does this make sense, help me verify my understanding!

#2 Ryano121   User is offline

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Re: Does this make sense, help me verify my understanding!

Posted 08 September 2015 - 12:24 PM

There's a whole lot you could say for each, but in short:

- Yes
- Frameworks like Bootstrap etc are front-end frameworks. They help you with the client side HTML/CSS/JS to get your site looking nice with minimal effort on your end.
- Pretty much. You normally use CDN's for stuff like jQuery/Bootsrap etc so more like libraries/frameworks than small scripts
- Yes
- I think jQuery provides some plugins which you could use for images e.g a nice viewer/carousel/slideshow etc. There are a load out there!
- Yes, in theory you could do everything yourself but you may as well make the most of the timesavers out there to help you

This post has been edited by Ryano121: 08 September 2015 - 12:25 PM

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#3 ArtificialSoldier   User is offline

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Re: Does this make sense, help me verify my understanding!

Posted 08 September 2015 - 12:27 PM

Quote

Things like Plone, WordPress and Joomla are all content delivery systems. They allow you to deliver multimedia, website management and security overhead a website framework.

Those are content management systems, they allow people to log in to a graphical interface and update the content on the site.

Quote

Things like Boostrap, KickStart and Boilerplate are website frameworks. They offer an empty website shell with vendor specific eye-candy and functions so that you can rapidly customize and build a site without fumbling around with back-end nonsense.

Those are front-end frameworks, not back-end frameworks.

Quote

A CDN is an archived network of ready-made scripts which are sourceable directly from the web without having to host them on your own system/server thereby increasing the browseable speed of a website.

A CDN is a high-speed network delivering static content. High-traffic websites will host static resources like images on a CDN to take advantage of the speed offered by the CDN for downloading. They can be any static resource, they do not have to be scripts. If you get an account with a CDN you can host whatever you'd like there.

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JQueary/Javascript plugins can be sourced online, included within script tags in your main HTML document and referenced for added functionality on a website. Like officially released code snippets?

Javascript in general is used to make a website interface dynamic. It means people can interact with your site without requiring every click to refresh the entire page. jQuery is a Javascript library that abstracts a lot of complex things into functions that are easier to use.

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If I'm correct about frameworks, are there any which you can recommend that have an inherent bonus towards portfolio/picture orientated websites?

Frameworks are made to be general-purpose. You may find plugins for frameworks that are geared towards specific use cases. jQuery has several image carousel plugins, for example.

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Finally, if you're hardcore you don't need any of these things and could theoretically develop a site from scratch..?

You could, but you would be spending a lot of time on things that you probably don't need to spend time on.
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#4 astonecipher   User is offline

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Re: Does this make sense, help me verify my understanding!

Posted 08 September 2015 - 12:35 PM

I'll second Ryano121.

But,

Quote

Finally, if you're hardcore you don't need any of these things and could theoretically develop a site from scratch..?


When starting out, most want to show how good they are. Professional developers use a lot of preexisting code, whether their own or found, to expedite projects. So, yes you will reach a level where you can do everything from scratch, but usually at that point you see the exact reason why you shouldn't. That isn't to say that everything can be found, just that if what you need already exists, don't reinvent the wheel.
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#5 Netroxen   User is offline

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Re: Does this make sense, help me verify my understanding!

Posted 08 September 2015 - 01:13 PM

Those are some seriously stellar responses guys, thanks for that! I suppose my next question would be whether you recommend that I develop from scratch long enough to know the foundations of everything or whether it'd be useful to just jump in and start using plugins straight away. I've already started on my site, however it has a fairly obscure design which doesn't follow general layouts. Do you think a framework would still work for me?

Also can you guys recommend a JQuery directory and/or a plugin database. I've Googled some, but no harm in knowing some links I may have missed.

I'll have many more questions to come but for now that's it, don't want to stray too far off topic.

But seriously thanks guys!
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#6 Ryano121   User is offline

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Re: Does this make sense, help me verify my understanding!

Posted 08 September 2015 - 01:20 PM

There is a difference between just using frameworks and libraries and using them whilst understanding how they work and what exactly they are doing - the latter being the much better option.

Really in this day and age you are going to want to use the frameworks if you are going to build something half decent. But when you do use them, don't just copy and paste huge chunks from the internet. Well you can but make sure you know exactly what each bit is doing.

I would also advice taking a look at the source code for some the libraries (perhaps some smaller ones to start off with). Most of them are very well documented and you get to see how things are actually implemented. But of course make sure you know the main Javascript points beforehand.
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#7 Netroxen   User is offline

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Re: Does this make sense, help me verify my understanding!

Posted 08 September 2015 - 01:49 PM

Ok, thanks - I'll be sure to post up my website progress under the 'Site Check' forum. It's a bit barebones at the moment - however I want to keep it as close to HTML5/CSS3 only as I can. We'll have to see. But I suppose coding it from grounds up is giving me a good understanding, just need the motivation to do it...

Again thanks for your time.
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#8 astonecipher   User is offline

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Re: Does this make sense, help me verify my understanding!

Posted 08 September 2015 - 02:11 PM

Your most basic site should incorporate html, css, and javascript (or library like jQuery, angular, ect) . Gone are the days of a strictly html/css site.
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#9 Netroxen   User is offline

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Re: Does this make sense, help me verify my understanding!

Posted 11 September 2015 - 05:19 AM

So now my next question. I've just discovered things like Bower, NPM and Grunt? What purpose do these services serve, they seem the same as a CDN directory? Am I confused? Is this a framework for plugins much like Bootstrap is to a website?
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#10 Ryano121   User is offline

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Re: Does this make sense, help me verify my understanding!

Posted 11 September 2015 - 08:06 AM

NPM is the package manager for NodeJs which is basically Javascript but runs on the server side and not client side. In a sense yes it is like a CDN but more a big repository of a lot of big Javascript libraries that you can use when building your apps. Again this is to be run server side not client side.

Two of the packages that npm provides include Bower and Grunt. Bower is again another package manager which will hunt down other dependencies and pull them in for you. Bower however is normally used to pull in client side libraries such as jQuery, not server side which npm is normally used for. It starts to get a bit confusing here if you haven't experienced it, but if you try it out it makes sense.

Then grunt is what's known as a 'task runner'. Basically when building apps there are certain monotenous things that you need to do a lot (often during deployment) and grunt helps to automate this. It's particularly good at doing things like minification, running all your tests etc when you make changes.

There are an absolute load of libraries like this though in npm so it can be very daunting. Basically know you not only have you client side libraries but also your server side (even if you aren't deploying a server per say) to automate deployment/dependency management.
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