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Express.js: Web Framework for Node.js

Express.js is a lightweight JavaScript framework with a great set of features for web applications. Along with Node.js, it allows the development of a powerful backend while making the app efficient, simple, and flexible.

Within the MEAN Stack, “E” stands for Express. Using the stack helps developers to focus on a single programming language and is a perfect option for building APIs of both cross-platform and web applications.

What Does Express.js Framework Offer?

Express.js is an open-source framework that enables full-stack development: while Node.js with Express take care of the backend, AngularJS deals with the front-ends, and MongoDB is just right for the database. On the whole, Express.js enhances and powers Node.js allowing the development of a robust server side. The main idea behind the technology is to assure developers with minimalistic and efficient tools for HTTP servers.

As for dealing with lots of requests and notifications from end-users, Express is a just the thing. Node.js coupled with Express.js manages thousands of concurrent actions within the app. Express also provides middleware packages such as URL parameters, POST data, sessions, security headers, and various libraries; they bring much to shortening the development time and facilitating the work for developers. Express’s routed APIs give the opportunity to build REST API server or routes. That brings developers to the new level of using route parameters and query strings. The framework is unopinionated and does not limit coders with strict rules and determined ways of solving problems: it leaves up to you the choice of components or apps’ structure. The other benefits are middleware, routing, simplified testing, and improved app performance. All these aspects make Express.js a good option for single page applications, websites, or public HTTP APIs.

Express.js Features

  1. Robust routing;
  2. High performance;
  3. Super-high test coverage;
  4. HTTP helpers (redirection, caching, etc);
  5. Templating engines;
  6. MVC pattern;
  7. Content negotiation;
  8. Executable for generating applications quickly.

Express.js as Middleware

Middleware, obviously, is the technology between client and server. It connects those two levels and assures the front-end access to the backend services such as databases, message queues, and file servers. It also brings advantages in concurrent processing, transaction management, load balancing, and security. Express suits small and medium projects.

Express.js website states that, as middleware, it can:

  • Execute any code;
  • Make changes to request/response objects;
  • End the request-response cycle;
  • Call the next middleware function in the stack.

How Express.js Works With Node.js?

Express in conjunction with Node.js creates a very powerful software for the server side. The framework allows combining built-in structure and functions necessary to develop a website. Express completes Node.js. It gives built-in features for web apps and the APIs without disregarding the feature-packed Node.js platform. It lets developers use all the potential of JavaScript while improving and simplifying the development experience. With Express+Node combination apps turn out to be robust.

Node.js and Express.js Examples


Real-time applications (RTA)

Since Express and Node.js handle lots of concurring requests, now real-time apps are very simple to create. Such RTAs can be for polls, voting, chats, text editing, collaboration boards, payments, taxi, streaming, and many others. This technology has simple architecture, yet they preserve scalability. In addition, Node.js is an event-based and non-blocking framework that lets a server handle a large number of users at the same time.


Applications with third-party integration

And again, thanks to dealing with concurrent connections, integration with third-party services can be done smoothly. In such way, you can easily add new functionalities without spending a lot of time for their development. Express.js API also took advantage of the Node.js manager package node for the distribution and installment of various third-party plug-ins.


Monitoring Applications

Node.js is a great choice for the back-end for websites that track visitors and visualize the outgoing data. You can check the analytics of your source: track visitors, see reviews, ratings, and analyze all this information. With such opportunity, you can work on improvements for your service and better understand customer needs.

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