What is frontend & backend programming?

by Meike Müller

Reading time 5 min

What to expect
  1. A brief overview
  2. What is frontend development?
  3. What makes a good frontend
  4. What is backend programming?
  5. What makes a good backend
  6. Where do backend and frontend developers work?
  7. The FAQ: Further questions and answers
    1. What is middleware?
    2. What are APIs?
    3. What is a requirements analysis?
    4. What is a requirements analysis?

Programming involves, among other things, the creation of computer programs, the development of software or the organization of various data structures. Programming can be divided into two areas, but they are closely linked: front-end and back-end development. In this article, we would like to explain the differences between frontend and backend programming, what makes good programming in these areas and where frontend and backend developers can work or how you can get support with web development in your company.

1. a brief overview

Programming can actually be divided into three areas: Frontend, middleware and backend. The frontend is the layer that is close to the user. It is, for example, the user interface of the IT system. The backend is the layer that is close to the system. This is where the data is stored. The middleware is the neutral application that is responsible for data exchange between two applications. It therefore mediates between the applications. However, we would like to explain the two layers frontend and backend in more detail so that you know what they are really about.

2 What is frontend development?

Grafik Laptop Gestaltung einer OberflächeFrontend development is the design of an application's user interface. The frontend is responsible for the user interface, also known as the graphical user interface or GUI. Users can see this when they navigate the web. It could also be referred to as the presentation layer.

Frontend programming on the web usually consists of programming with a programming language and the so-called web design. HTML, CSS and Javascript are usually used for front-end development. For web design, graphics and images are often created using Photoshop, for example. This allows applications to be designed individually. Every detail that you can see on a website, for example (button, menu, fonts or tables), was previously created using programming languages and graphics. But it's not just websites that have a frontend, every other software does too.

3. what makes a good frontend

You can tell whether the frontend of an application has been successfully implemented by looking at a few features. Firstly, you should immediately recognize the goal of the application. If there is a call-to-action button, i.e. a button that prompts the user to take an action, this should be clearly positioned and designed. This is also important with regard to search engine optimization in Google if it is a web application that is also to be found via Google.

On the other hand, a good front end should pay attention to user-friendly navigation. This means that familiar functions are placed in the usual places so that they can be found straight away. Incidentally, this also ensures a good user experience (perhaps link the relevant article here). As a front-end developer, you should also adapt the user interface for all devices. This means, for example, that an online store should also look good on smartphones, tablets and PCs and adapt to the size of the screen. Users should want to use the online store on any device. For example, if the store doesn't work as well on a smartphone, smartphone users will probably no longer visit the online store. By the way, adapting to different devices is called responsive design.

It is also important in the frontend that attention is paid to a uniform, clear and modern design in order to radiate seriousness. For you as a frontend developer, this means that you should have a good eye for design and still be familiar with and enthusiastic about the programming side. As a good frontend developer, you are not only familiar with the classic programming languages, but are also proficient in image editing programs to create graphics, etc.

4 What is backend development?

Grafik Laptop Backend-Entwicklung In contrast to the front end, the back end is not visible to the user of a web application. It is much more the layer behind the functions. It makes the frontend usable at all, for example by allowing you to click on a button and then go to another subpage. When you click on the button, you can in principle communicate with the backend via the frontend. In the case of software, the backend is closer to the hardware than the frontend. It is the data access level that is responsible for all functions running in the background.

As a backend developer, you are proficient in the programming languages PHP, C++, C# or Java, for example, and program the functions of your application. You also have a broad knowledge of SOAP, HTTP and REST protocols, databases and SQL. As a backend developer, you generally deal with interfaces or APIs, database programming and services.

5 What makes a good backend

A good backend is clearly structured. Careful data management is important so that functions in the backend can be changed or improved at any time. To increase the performance of the backend, you should ensure that data is synchronized at regular intervals. In addition, as many processes as possible should be automated so that all functions can be executed smoothly. To achieve this, individual workflows must also be coordinated with each other.

6 Where do backend and frontend developers work?

Backend and frontend programmers now have a wide choice of employers who want to hire them. Developers are needed in almost every company, for example to program a web application or to deal with app programming. Developers are also needed for online stores and websites. A very popular job for programmers is in a software agency. However, frontend and backend developers are also sought after in the public sector, healthcare, banks or within the logistics industry. Do you have any further questions about frontend or backend programming? We will be happy to advise you. Our software agency has years of experience in the field of web application programming and will be happy to help you find a customized software solution. Of course, you can also get help with web development in your company from EXWE. Just give us a call for an initial consultation. We look forward to hearing from you!

Before an application is programmed, as a backend developer you should carry out a requirements or needs analysis in order to plan the application in advance. This requires analytical and logical thinking.

FAQ: Questions and answers about programming types

If you still have questions about the programming types, you will find a few frequently asked questions and the corresponding answers and explanations here. If you have a specific question, please do not hesitate to contact us.

  • What is middleware?

    Middleware is a type of software that serves as an intermediary between different applications or components of a system and enables them to communicate with each other and exchange data. Middleware is often used in distributed systems where different applications or components are running on different computers. It can be implemented in various ways, including as a library or framework used by the applications, or as a separate application that mediates between the other applications. The use of middleware can facilitate the development of distributed systems by simplifying and standardizing the communication between the different components.

  • What are APIs?

    APIs (Application Programming Interfaces) are interfaces that allow applications to communicate with each other and access certain functions and services. APIs can be implemented in various formats, including as web APIs that are called via the HTTP protocol or as local APIs that are executed on the same computer. They can be used by other applications to call specific functions or retrieve data without the applications having to be directly connected to each other. The use of APIs can facilitate the development of applications by standardizing communication between different applications and allowing developers to access existing functions and services instead of reimplementing them over and over again.

    Vorschau YouTube Video
  • What is a needs analysis?

    A needs analysis is a method used to identify and document the needs and requirements of a system or application. The needs analysis is often carried out at the beginning of a development process to ensure that the system or application meets the requirements of the users and fulfills their needs. It can be carried out in various ways, including interviews, questionnaires and observations. The results of the requirements analysis are then used to define the requirements for the system or application and to align the development accordingly.

  • What is a requirements analysis?

    A requirements analysis is a method used to identify and document the requirements for a system or application. The requirements analysis is often carried out as part of a needs analysis and is based on the needs and wishes of the users of the system or application. The requirements analysis focuses on the functions and capabilities that the system or application should provide and determines how it should be used and what requirements it must fulfill. The results of the requirements analysis are used to plan and control the development of the system or application and to ensure that it meets the requirements of the users.

What is your project? If you want to tell us about it, we'll call you back!

from 03.09.2021

Hello, my name is Meike. I take care of the EXWE back office and am responsible for our social media channels. All of our articles are meant to make your life easier and help you make decisions. Nevertheless, it can happen that something remains unclear, so: If you have questions about this article you can easily reach me at +49 231 93149827.

You always want to stay at the cutting edge of technology Don't miss any more news and blog posts.
We also have the following interesting posts from our tech blog for you on this topic
Reach your users with web apps and push notifications!

Push notifications in the form of web apps help you get closer to your business goals. Find out why you shouldn't do without them here.

Can I track HubSpot Chat conversions in compliance with GDPR?

How to track the HubSpot Chat Widget using a CookieManager like cookiebot.com for GoogleAnalytics?

Web development: Four steps to a functional web app

Do you want to program a web app for your company, but don't know how to get started? We'll tell you four steps that will lead to success.