(!(REST in this.place))

7/5/17

I started to write a post last week but I don’t know what happened. Got distracted and never published it I guess. I’m barely keeping my head above this crazy torrent of server-side life that I’ve been immersed in. I’m stressed out but I’m still going! It seems like when I learn about one new thing, it reveals five more things that I need to learn. Each of those five new things introduce me to five more things I need to know about.

I frequently worry that I’m forgetting things I learned a few weeks ago because I’m not using all of it. I’m too busy learning new material. Of course, some of the new material builds on top of previous lessons, so I’m good there. But I am backtracking to refresh myself. So I am having to balance new and old to keep up with the curriculum.

“Sometimes we don’t know what we have learned until we’re tested.”

I don’t remember when or how I acquired that quote– or maybe I made it up– but it’s been with me for a very long time. I can remember telling it to friends in High School. I think it is totally true, and I am trying to keep it in mind when I’m stressing about possibly forgetting things I recently learned about.

Well anyways, here are some of the topics I’ve been studying over the last couple weeks:

  • Node – the server-side runtime environment, via Google’s V8 JavaScript engine, for running JavaScript locally on a server.
  • Express – a JS framework for working with Node. Kind of like jQuery does for plain JS. Without Express, coding straight Node would be cumbersome. Express allows us to code quicker and more concise.
  • REST APIs – REpresentational State Transfer (REST), an architectural style and standard for designing APIs. The HTTP protocol and it’s methods are used for communications.
  • CRUD – Create Read (or Retrieve) Update and Delete. These are the four core operations used for interacting with REST APIs.
  • Routing – URL endpoints used for REST APIs.
  • NPM – Node Package Manager. Used for … managing Node packages. A handy command line utility for installing packages from Node.
  • Nodemon – a very useful Node package that listens for changes made to our project files and will then restart the Node server.
  • Heroku.com – a PaaS for deploying server-side projects.

and more… such as importing and using Node modules, handling request and response objects, error handling, and middleware. Middleware seems to be at the core of Express applications. It’s a chain of functions used for handling requests and responses. Or it could be one function. But it helps keep the app code organized. Middleware can be third-party, built-in, or custom.

There is probably more that I can’t think of right now, but as you can see I’ve been super busy. Still enjoying it but definitely taking a ride on the stresscoaster that never seems to stop. Its like 18 loop-the-loops followed by a Splash Mountain waterfall. It’s a fun ride but it’s intense.

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