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Fundamentals all developers should know about JavaScript

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March 1st, 2024 07:54

One language common among millions of web pages and websites is Javascript. It is the language that adds the magic of interactivity to your websites. Hence, the language is unlikely to get phased out anytime soon.

Web developers use Javascript daily. Moreover, the language is easy to learn and doesn't require complicated runtime environments. So, to enhance your use of Javascript, here are six fundamentals that you must know about:

Javascript

JavaScript is a high-level programming language that can make a website more interactive. Brendan Eich invented this language.

JavaScript is both versatile and user-friendly. You can create games, animated 2D/3D graphics, comprehensive database-driven apps, and even more as you gain experience in the language. It is a small but powerful programming language. Over time, Javascript developers have built several tools on top of an existing JavaScript language, allowing them to access a wealth of functionality with minimal effort.

1. Prototypes: Objects Inherit from Other Objects

The base of Javascript is prototypes. Objects in Javascript inherit another object's features using these prototypes. A prototype property is attached whenever a function or object is created in Javascript. Prototypes are available through the "hidden" property __proto__.

The main advantage of these prototypes in Javascript is that they make the code reusable and help conserve memory.

2. Functions Are Independent Units of Behavior

Functions are units of behaviour, but the key point here is that they are self-contained. Functions in other languages, such as Java or C#, must be declared within a class. In JavaScript, this isn't the case.

Functions can be declared in the global scope or identified as independent units that can be reused within a module.

3. IIFE, i.e., Immediately Invoked Function Expression

Immediately Invoked Function Expression is a function called immediately after its creation.

An example of defining an IIFE is:

(() => console.log(‘Hello world’))();

The outside world can't retrieve variables declared within the IIFE. It prevents the global scope from becoming polluted. Therefore, the key reason for using IIFE is to execute the code immediately and achieve data privacy.

4. A Single-Threaded Language

JavaScript is a single-threaded language. That is, just one statement is carried out at a time.

In the main thread, two functions cannot run simultaneously. You may have heard of options for running different functions parallelly, such as web workers, but workers do not share information with the main thread. They just communicate by passing messages; nothing is shared. This simplifies things, and we only need to focus on making functions run quickly. A long-running function will cause the page to become unresponsive.

5. Closures

One of the most important features of Javascript, especially for app development, is the significance of closures and lambdas. When you export a function, a closure is created. In other words, closure is simply a function contained within another function with access to the outer function variable.

This is automatic; hence, a closure is created each time a callback function is created, or a function is returned for another function. These closures are important because they can be used for asynchronous programming.

6. Hoisting

When developers are unfamiliar with hoisting in Javascript, they often get unexpected results. You can call a function in Javascript before it is defined and not get the 'Uncaught Reference Error' error. The reason for this is hoisting, which occurs when the Javascript interpreter moves variables and function declarations to the top of the current scope (function scope or global scope) before executing the code.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. What are the advantages of Javascript?

Here are the main advantages of JavaScript:

1. Speed

2. Simplicity

3. Popularity

4. Rich Interfaces

5. Versatility

6. Interoperability

2. What are the main features of Javascript?

Here are the most important features of Javascript

1. Light-Weight Language

2. Case-Sensitive

3. Interpreter-based

4. Control Statements Equipped

5. Dynamic Typing

3. Is Javascript easy to learn?

JavaScript is a simple and easy-to-learn language, unlike other programming languages such as C++, Ruby, and Python. It is a high-level, interpreted language easily integrated with other languages like HTML.

4. Can I directly learn JavaScript?

Yes, JavaScript can be learned directly without prior knowledge of other languages.

5. What is the main use of Javascript?

JavaScript is mainly used as a scripting language that helps create dynamically changing content, multimedia, animated images, and all other interactive stuff.

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