Choosing the Right JavaScript Framework for the Job

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John Hannah:

If you’ve been following web development over the past few years, you will no doubt have noticed that JavaScript frameworks are an increasingly popular way to build web applications. Although there are many frameworks out there, four of them stand out: Backbone, AngularJS, Ember and React.

Perhaps you’ve had a chance to experiment with one or two of these frameworks, but are still a little unsure about the best one to commit to mastering. Web development, particularly front-end development, has been moving at a blistering pace and there is constant pressure to add valuable new skills to your repertoire.

Developers have to make tough choices about what they are going to focus on, and the idea of spending months learning a new framework that ultimately doesn’t pay off isn’t very appealing, not to mention if the result is a production application you are then committed to maintaining.

What follows is a high level look at these frameworks. It’s the result of my experience with them over the past couple of years. Some of them I’ve dug into more deeply than others, but I tried to understand the benefits and concerns with each so that I could make an informed choice about which has the most to offer

This comes up a lot here, we do most of our work using Angular.js, but now and then a new project comes up and we have to decide what we want to use with it.

Sometimes, we decide to just go with no framework in favour of straight Javascript too.