Web-Development is running into the wrong direction

Hagen Hübel
2 min readJan 24, 2021

As a Backend- and native-app-developer I spent 10 days recently with “modern” Web-Application development (JavaScript, VueJS, Babel, WebPack… you name it). This is what I have learned so far:

1. everything is deprecated. Not a single “npm install” works without flooding your screen with deprecated / outdated / “this library is not longer supported”-messages

2. everything is magic. Logic gets injected by somehow hidden stuff and you never now what is going on under the hood. Magic things can also break very quickly.

3. anyone may and can create their own javascript dialect using the “transpilation” brought by Babel, and people even do that, but apparently without consulting each other about it beforehand occasionally

4. your bugs and questions show up multiple times on GitHub and StackOverflow with very long threads showing different solutions, not one of which works for your specific problem

5. overtaking an existing NodeJS and/or Web-project might fail at “npm install” due to incompatibilities, outdated libraries, missing babel-settings or webpack-config or even because you have the wrong version of Node installed

6. There is a change of 99.9% that “fsevents” will fail due to a too old or too new version of Node

7. There is an even bigger chance that some libraries that needs to get build with node-gyp will run into Compiling issues due to the wrong phase of the moon

8. As a backend-dev, never ever try to understand the difference between “px”, “em”, “rem” and all these units that are used in web-development. You will never get it, promised!

9. Conclusion: last time I had to work in Web Development was almost 10 years ago, jQuery was the new kid on the block. But: IT WORKED PERFECTLY! We understood it! We could code great stuff with a library that came only with a single file of code!

10. Conclusion II: in my experience, it was never a good idea to build complex stuff and make it even more complex with every single commit. And it is even dangerous to rely on fancy libraries that aren’t in active development any more.

11. Conclusion III: the whole web driven development is running in the wrong direction. But I fear we can’t stop it anymore.

I’m aware of sounding like an old man. Probably I am ;)