Node.js

What Makes Node.js Awesome for Enterprise App Development

An open source JavaScript runtime engine developed by Ryan Dahl, Node.js got a great start right after its

An open source JavaScript runtime engine developed by Ryan Dahl, Node.js got a great start right after its debut in 2009. Its pioneer adopters included corporate giants like Microsoft, Netflix, Uber, Yahoo!, LinkedIn etc. which soon caught the attention of developers worldwide. Today, Node.js is one of the most widely preferred runtime environment backed by a growing developer community.

Node.js has a lot of capabilities but there are developers that still think the engine isn’t cut out for enterprise app development. This is probably because enterprise apps come with tougher challenges compared to standard app development. Enterprise apps serve different purposes as well, like assessing business performance, facilitating collaboration between employees, securely storing sensitive data, tracking employee performance, and even making analytics-based forecasts.

To implement all these features, enterprise app developers work with a robust language and powerful technologies. This is where the role of Node.js is often debated.

Can developers use it to build enterprise apps?

Contrary to what many developers believe, Node.js which is built on Chrome’s V8 JavaScript engine, actually is a great option for enterprise app development. Let’s explore why.

The npm

The npm is one of the most important things that make Node.js remarkable. Node Package Manager or npm is a huge online repository for the publishing of Node.js projects. It gives developers access to a wide array of tools that can be used to develop high-end enterprise applications relatively easily.

But this is just the tip of the iceberg.

Here are a few other qualities of Node.js that makes it an awesome pick for enterprise app development.

Node.js is single-threaded

There’s a misconception that Node.js being single-threaded makes it slow for the development of enterprise apps. On the contrary, being single-threaded can be considered one of its major advantages. Non event-drive frameworks require multiple parallel threads to be created to handle several requests. As the number of parallel threads is limited, the number of requests that can be handle will also be limited. Node.js doesn’t have such a limit on parallel threads. Provided there is enough memory and the kernel permits, a several number of parallel requests can be processed in Node.js without hassle.

Microservices-based architecture

Node.js has a microservices-based architecture which ensures optimal utilization of resources for both horizontal as well as vertical scaling. The architecture also enables Node.js to function with the lowest amount of resources in terms of computing power and CPU & RAM usage. Additionally, it also makes it easier to handle separate codebases and smaller teams. This way the development ecosystem can have multiple teams handling various services collaboratively thus resulting in faster development.

Asynchronous programming

Enterprise application developers often find it a challenge to deal with legacy software and monoliths where the main program flow is constantly stuffed with more features, increasing the complexity of the whole system in the process.  This won’t be an issue with Node.js thanks to its asynchronous programming feature.

With Node.js, asynchronous events are independently executed which means the main program flow isn’t affected in any way while it processes requests. This also contributes to cutting down the cost of I/O operations while speeding them up at the same time. As each single operation is independent, and each can be processed simultaneously, throughput and latency are improved considerably.  

Promises

Developers are probably familiar with the term ‘Callback Hell’. But they don’t need to be concerned if they are using Node.js. This is because Node.js gives them ‘Promises’. ‘Promises’ is a different alternative to callbacks when asynchronous code is involved. With ‘Promises’, a future value is represented which can be returned when a call is made. The callbacks are essentially replaced with this technique.

Reusability of RESTful APIs

This is one of the biggest advantages of Node.js that led to its rapid adoption over the last few years. Node.js focuses on resuable RESTful APIs. These APIs are a great way to develop complex software systems as they are capable of handling tremendous amounts of data by connecting to the backend.

Improved productivity

Node.js apps are written in JavaScript which makes it much easier to learn and adapt to though it takes some effort to master. One entire stack can be built using the same language which obviously speeds up development. Because Node.js gives them access to better tools, improves flexibility and collaboration, the developers would be more satisfied resulting in increased productivity.

Endnote

Many of these uncertainties and doubts around Node.js being a great choice for enterprise app development stem from complacence of developers who are comfortable with Java. They don’t want to change what’s already good. But the fact of the matter is that Node.js is not ‘good’; it’s better. At AOT, we have developers with proven expertise in both Java and Node.js. We choose what’s best for our clients when developing apps for them. Interested in how we do things? Drop us a message.

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