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5 reasons to learn Javascript – and how to start

JavaScript should be among the first programming languages you study. But what is it about it that makes it so useful, and how should you start?

Have you ever seen a website that just left you awestruck? With beautiful designs, animations, or responsive elements, some sites are like a work of art. And almost all of them were created using JavaScript.

On top of being widely used and super versatile, it's also a language that a lot of beginner programmers choose to learn. If you're one to be on the brink of starting your coding journey, or you're just not 100% sure if JavaScript would be the right choice, we're here to help.

Let's explore the 5 main reasons you'd be making the right choice by learning JavaScript.

But first, let's see where this programming language came from.

JavaScript is (almost) as old as the web

In the early-mid 90s,' the internet become available to wider audiences thanks to personal computers and browsers. At this time, there were two key players in the browser wars competing for the web's dominance: Netscape and Microsoft. Netscape’s flagship browser Navigator, and Microsoft’s Internet Explorer were going head to head. JavaScript was originally created to be a scripting language for Netscape's browser only, but after its release, more and more browsers added JavaScript support.

The web needed a way to become more dynamic with animations, interactions, and small automations. And JavaScript was the way to do it. Since then, the language emerged to be the most widely-used programming language. And there are a ton of benefits if you decide to master it.

Now let's see our list! Here's why learning JavaScript is the right choice:

1. You can't bypass JavaScript on the web

JavaScript is the most universal programming language of the web. Today, it's used by 97.6% of all websites, according to W3Techs. So it's not an over-exaggeration when we say that you cannot pass it by.

Google’s search results that pop up as you type get there with JavaScript. Microsoft built its Edge web browser with it. And Facebook invented its own way of delivering JavaScript to speed up their site (each section of your Facebook page is a collection of independent JavaScript applications).

The world wide web is built with this programming language, so naturally, there's no way of getting around it. And you definitely shouldn't.

2. It's an in-demand skill on the job market

If you check out Statista's 2021 worldwide survey, you'll see that JavaScript is officially the most used programming language in the world. And it's a ubiquitous language, appearing in the greatest percentage of job postings altogether. So while it's not necessarily the most beloved language (everybody has their preferences), but it's definitely the most widely used. And it's also gaining more popularity and relevance in many areas.

According to the developer skills tester site DevSkiller's 2020 report, JavaScript is the most in-demand IT skill. So learning it can give you amazing advantages on the job market, and help you future-proof your tech skills.

3. You can bring amazing features to websites

Once, the internet was just displaying texts, without any interactive behaviour. Today, JavaScript brings interactivity, responsiveness, and often personality to sites. All browsers support JavaScript, which allows videos, animations and other media to get displayed beautifully. The main component of the web are HTML and CSS. They mark up websites' contents, but you need JavaScript to make them come to life.

Check out this amazing online graphic novel by SBS. Or tune in to the world's different radio stations online with Radio Garden. None of this type of web content would be possible to pull off without JavaScript.

So if you’re being called to make beautiful, responsive websites with amazing UX (user experience), put JavaScript on your 'to-learn list' quickly.

4. It's more than just a front-end programming language

It's a scripting language (so its scripts need to run within a browser or an interpreter), and it's not bound to just front-end or back-end development. When combined with interpreters like Node.js, its versatility really seems endless. Other than interactive elements for websites, you can harness JavaScript to:

  • Create web and mobile applications - Check out some of the top apps from world-famous companies like Netflix, Linkedin, Paypal, or Uber - they’re all built using the Node.js interpreter, which is a runtime environment for JavaScript code. Developers can use interpreters and various frameworks to develop and build web and mobile apps, not just web pages.
  • Build web servers and server-side applications - Beyond websites and apps, developers can use JavaScript to build simple web servers and develop the back-end infrastructure using Node.js. 
  • Build games - Of course, you can use JavaScript to build games! If you have a great idea for a new game, Javascript will let you create it in either 2D or 3D. Gaming engines like Pixi.js and Physics JS for example can be used to build a nice video game.
  • Develop Artificial Intelligence - Right now most AI apps use R or Python, but JavaScript has a great future as an AI language. Several JavaScript AI frameworks are emerging that make it possible to execute AI tasks in the browser. The Tensorflow Javascript library is also available for machine learning tasks.

5. It's easy to learn

JavaScript is a multi-paradigm scripting language, so it supports object-oriented, imperative, and functional programming styles too. We'd say that it's a relatively easy programming language to learn as a beginner. Also, if you do master JavaScript, you'll be able to do such a variety of things with it that you won't regret putting in the effort.

It's great to learn it among your first languages because you can achieve a lot with it in a short time. You might be able to learn Python a bit quicker thanks to its simplistic language. But you won't be able to do both front-end and back-end development with Python - you can do more spectacular things with JavaScript a lot earlier.

You don't need too much tech-savviness to make your JavaScript code work. You can simply run it with a browser. However, if you want to go deeper than just the code, there'll be more complex things you need to grasp. And a well-structured study plan, plus some guidance will do you a lot.

Consider how you'll learn JavaScript

Beginners often miss an important point when they decide to learn JavaScript: that this programming language will bring about a ton of questions, and having some structure and extra guidance on your learning journey will be invaluable.

When you want to go past simply writing the code, you'll need to dip your toes into server-side solutions, database handling, front-end development, and UX (user experience) too. JavaScript will enforce a "full-stack development view" for anybody who immerses themselves in it. And all this can be hard to grasp without guidance and an immersive, all-encompassing view on development.

Want to learn JavaScript in the most efficient way?

Learning development in a more traditional way or on your own could lead to some frustration. Especially when there's no focus on your own personal journey and skills. So consider learning with an innovative method that brings education closer to workplace culture and demands. If you're one to prefer practice-oriented learning and a supportive community with pro mentors, Codecool might be the way to do it.

Our full-stack development course is specifically built to give you a 360° view of software development. Plus, it will give you the most in-demand skillset on the market and a guaranteed tech position. You'll learn 4-6 programming languages - including JavaScript in the third, web-focused module -, a ton of top technologies, and amazing soft skills.

On top of our job guarantee, we have great payment options too, to help you begin your coding journey. You can even pay after you finished the course, in convenient, monthly instalments when you're already earning a nice salary in tech.

Check out our site for more info or reach out with your questions! We're always happy to hear from you.