The front-end is...

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Originally posted on Medium; reposted and expanded further here.

It’s been my experience that most front-end developers know the feeling of being mislabeled for their skills: “The front-end? Oh, that’s just wireframes and fonts and…”


Yeeeeeah nope! The front-end is also:


Yes, front-end developers design. Maybe not 100% of them, but c’mon, it’s an integral part of development. They design everything from interfaces to APIs, so let’s give these people props!

Code…lots and lots of it

You think that stuff in the browser runs on fairy dust?


We test the code, we test the UI, we test the experience. Then we refine it all and retest.


User abandon rate high? Load times not what they should be? Need the whole thing to interact with assistive technology? Keep it coming.


See everything I mentioned above, then see everything that I mention below.


How many new web-based features were introduced last week alone? Which ones are being implemented in nightly builds? Keeping up with all of it is a challenge in itself.


Sure, the front-end can be chaotic — and at times a headache — but it’s also a lot of fun to work on something that will get in front of a lot of users.


We package it, we deploy it. To users, to the world.


We collect data, we work with data, we produce data.


This stuff has to work in different browsers on different devices, running on different operating systems across different networks.

UI, UX, UEverything

Users are our lifeblood. We do this to make things better for them.


It works great over here, but not over here. This device is okay, but not this one. And performance throttling isn’t what it should be. Could ‘ya fix all that, and also get your TPS reports in?


We deliver a product. A tangible, usable product to customers.

Tough to describe!

Hey, you give it a try and see how far you get. The front-end is complicated.


We’re changing the way people interact with the web, the way they manage their lives. That’s kinda huge.


Take a look around. It’s a big online world out there. Anything you’re interacting with has a front-end component to it.

Really, really awesome!

I can’t imagine ever doing anything else.