Front End (In a Website)

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What is a front end (in a website)?


Definition of a front end (in a website)

The front end of a website is everything the user either sees or interacts with when they visit the website. It is responsible for the total look and feel of an online experience.

While the term may sound a little technical, website front ends are really an everyday encounter for almost all of us. If you’ve opened an app to check the weather, or scrolled through today’s headlines on a website, you’ve interacted with a front end. 

Put simply, the front end is a combination of two different elements: the graphic design (the look) and the user interface (the feel). Each of these is created independently, with most of the technical work going into the user interface using web languages like HTML, CSS, and JavaScript.

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How is the front end developed?

Creating a front end experience isn’t a one-person job. In fact, it takes a group of people to create a website that looks as good as it feels to use. 

Most often, this group will be comprised of a front end developer — whose job it is to actually write the code for the functions of the website — and a UX or UI developer, who will work on the visuals of the website. 

The front end experience usually goes through a few different stages of development, including the creation of wireframes (rough outlines of the user flow), prototypes (working examples of the site), and finally user testing.

Read next: What is a back end developer?

General FAQ

What is a front end developer?
A front end developer is responsible for bringing a digital product’s user interface design to life, converting web-design files into the relevant code (HTML, CSS, etc.). Everything that a user clicks, reads, views, or watches have been put in place by a front-end developer.
What is the difference between a front end developer and a back end developer?
A front end developer focuses on all of the design system components that a user interacts with and sees. Everything from menus and colors to animations is running properly due to the front end developer’s skill. A back end developer essentially works behind the scenes of a website, focusing on server-side tasks. They work on scripting, databases, website architecture — the parts that determine the functionality and performance of a website.
What is a front end alignment?
Front end alignment refers to the process of ensuring the requirements of a website or app’s design align with user experience. While a product will feature certain branding or functional elements to maintain consistency with existing products, these shouldn’t hinder the user. Front end alignment is crucial to create products that serve the business’s and user’s needs alike.
How to become a front end developer?
The most important step in the process of becoming a front end developer is learning HTML and CSS to a high standard. Online courses are available, and once you have the essential skills, try building websites. Experiment with HTML, CSS, and JavaScript to hone your capabilities. It’s also vital to explore responsive and mobile design. Most people go online via their smartphones daily, and websites have to be optimized for smooth performance on any device. Cross-browser development is a useful skill to harness, too. Aspiring front end developers should become well-versed in CMS platforms and testing processes. It takes time, but the effort will pay off when you’re creating websites that deliver a great user experience.

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