Becoming Platform Agnostic: Developing Solutions with JavaScript Frameworks

You may have heard that JavaScript development has resurfaced as a major programming language, with everyone from Google (AngularJS) to Facebook (React) developing frameworks for modernizing interfaces while helping to organize code. With today’s hardware, JavaScript can run with little processing overhead on almost any device, minimizing the strain on servers and reducing hardware costs for content providers. But JavaScript development has another major advantage for web development: it allows companies to remain platform agnostic. With just a few changes to your service references, the same JavaScript code can be run on nearly any major platform with a web interface such as Drupal, SharePoint, and Alfresco; and because JavaScript is run within the browser, it is “cloud ready” and often more accessible with Software as a Service (SaaS).

Angular JS graphic.

This is important for both organizations and web development providers alike. For organizations looking to build or modify applications, JavaScript development allows them to choose between a variety of platforms with less commitment to any specific platform. It can also reduce or eliminate the need for back end development, mitigating security risks. If planning to move to the cloud, JavaScript development reduces migration concerns when compared to more traditional development frameworks, like .Net, since it can run in any browser. For web development providers, a workforce that remains platform agnostic though JavaScript development is more versatile and easier to engage on projects.

Bixal developers have been using JavaScript frameworks such as Google’s AngularJS on major platforms like SharePoint 2013 and SharePoint Online, but also with completely custom applications built with .Net or NodeJS. Our approach has been to completely separate the back end from the front end, bridging the two via web services – a practice becoming known as, “decoupled architecture.” With this approach, we can often leverage code across projects simply by changing our web service calls. Through our use of JavaScript frameworks like AngularJS, our users get the modern, snappy experience they have come to expect from major websites while our clients can appreciate the capabilities we are able to provide quickly and with very little access to back end infrastructure.