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  • Writer's pictureTim Buchalka

Three Core Skills Every Web Developer Needs

Updated: Aug 2, 2019

Becoming a web developer requires core skills in certain languages and then a decision later as to what framework or underlying technology you're gonna focus and use from that point forward. Today, what I wanna do is discuss the core skills you need to obtain to get started on your journey to becoming a web developer.

Today we're talking about the core skills you need in order to start your journey to becoming a web developer. Now, just a quick warning here, that this is a single article so I can't hope to explain everything in detail so I'm grossly simplifying concepts here so keep in mind that obviously you'll need to take things to the next level to really understand this but this should get you started.

All right, so moving on, we're gonna start with the first of the three skills I'm talking about. Core skill number one: HTML. HTML stands for Hyper Text Markup Language and incidentally, a markup language is a system for annotating a document within text so the text we're talking about for hyper text markup language, or HTML, is the text that you want displayed on a web page.

HTML elements are the building blocks of HTML pages. Now, there's a lot of HTML elements but you can do all sorts of things like, for example, placing an image, bolding some text on the screen, adding headings to the page and there's a lot, lot more you can actually do there. Now, what happens is that your computer browser reads a page of HTML and interprets these HTML elements as what is to say, grabbing the text that's in that page, then renders that page into your browser or onto your browser and render - by the way, is just a fancy word for displaying - so basically the computer browser grabs that text file, renders it, puts it together and then displays it on the browser page. All right, so that's HTML, Hyper Text Markup Language.

Moving on now to the second of our core skills, core skill number two: CSS. CSS stands for Cascading Style Sheets and is used to format content on web pages. Now, CSS works with HTML and it can do things like define font sizes, colour, spacing, borders and so on, things of that nature, more the presentation side of things. Where CSS is particularly powerful is allowing a relatively easy way for you to apply styles across either an entire website or series of pages so CSS allows you to separate the presentation and the content which I think's pretty cool. All right, so that was core skill number two: CSS (Cascading Style Sheets).

Let's move onto core skill number three: JavaScript. Now, firstly, not to be confused with Java. JavaScript and Java have almost nothing in common other than the name and they are completely different things. Here we're talking about JavaScript so JavaScript is the programming language for the web so every time you see a web page doing something more than just displaying static text or a static set of images, more than likely, JavaScript is involved in some way, shape or form.

JavaScript enables you to create dynamically updating content for a web page. You can animate stuff, you can enhance web page user interfaces with menus, dialogue boxes and so on and so forth and, in fact, it can even work with 2D and 3D graphics, games and a tonne of other stuff. All right, so that's JavaScript, core skill number three.

Let's have a quick summary of those three skills that we've talked about today. HTML which was core skill number one describes the page, including the text and graphics that are going to be on that page. CSS, our core skill number two is used to control and customise the look of the page. Core skill number three, JavaScript, adds dynamic components and makes most elements of the page programmable in some way, shape or form.

These three core skills are used in pretty well all web development frameworks and technologies so a good knowledge of these three things is absolutely essential for you to become a web developer. Now, my Learn Programming Academy has a combined HTML and CSS course to get you up to speed fast with HTML and CSS, if you need to do that. I've also got a dedicated JavaScript course, which will, well, no surprises there, teach you JavaScript if that's something you need as well.

So, every web developer needs to know HTML, CSS and JavaScript. Once you've got those three core skills you can then take the next step and that next step would be choosing the methodologies, other programming languages and frameworks to actually start creating your web apps. That technology or methodology can be anything from PHP to Java, Django, Spring and a ton more.

There's so many frameworks and technologies and methodologies that you can actually use that I can't hope to possibly cover that in a single post but I will create another one about that sort of stuff in the future.

All right, so I hope that helped. If you've got any questions, feel free to leave a comment and I'll get back to you.

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