Image for post
Image for post

MERN Stack — The best tech stack for your business.

Are you having a brilliant product idea popping in your mind? But, feeling confused as to which technology or framework to choose. Software development frameworks guide covers everything to help you understand the most popular technologies and frameworks in a bit depth.

The web and app development industry has gone a far level ahead as what it was earlier. Developing a web app provides tonnes of unique and creative web designs to work on. They are all built utilizing ‘tech stack’ comprising of robust and scalable technologies that are ruling the web development industry nowadays.

For businesses to ensure fast web development and high-level efficiency must have to choose the right tech stack to deliver inevitable web experience to the users. Wondering how? Let’s check out!

What is the MERN stack?

MERN stack is a collection of robust and powerful technologies used to develop scalable master web applications, comprising front-end, back-end, and database components. It is a technology stack that is a user-friendly full-stack JavaScript framework for building dynamic websites and applications. This is the reason it is the most preferred platform by startups.

The set of incredible technologies it includes are Mongo DB, Express, React JS, and Node.js.

MongoDB: MongoDB is an open-source, cross-platform, NoSql DBMS. It is a document-oriented database, which means that data is saved using collections and documents. MongoDB stores the data in a binary JSON format that allows the fast exchange of data between client and server. It can also be used for the storage of large volumes of data, which makes it highly scalable.

Express: Express JS is a modular, lightweight framework of the Node JS that helps in building web applications. It is a server-side, back-end, JavaScript-based framework that is designed to write simplified, fast, and secure applications.

React: React JS is an open-source JavaScript library used to build user interfaces, typically for single-page applications. It offers the facility of code reusability on multiple platforms. It is fast and scalable.

Node.js: Node JS is an open-source, cross-platform, JavaScript runtime environment. It is designed to run the JavaScript code outside the browser, on the server-side.

Image for post
Image for post

MERN Stack Components- A Closer Look

Let’s have a sneak peek into the MERN stack components which makes web development all the way easier to do.

MongoDB: A cross-platform document database

MongoDB is a document database in which data is stored in flexible documents with a JSON (JavaScript Object Notation) based query language. The content, size, and number of fields in the documents can differ from one another which means that the data structure can be changed over time. MongoDB framework is best known for its flexible and scalable features. Check out some use cases of MongoDB here.

Features

Here listed down some features of MongoDB:

  • MongoDB environments are very scalable.
  • MongoDB can run over multiple servers. The data is duplicated to keep the system up and also keep its running condition in case of hardware failure.
  • It supports Master-Slave replication. MongoDB uses native applications to maintain multiple copies of data.
  • It supports MapReduce and flexible aggregation tools.
  • MongoDB JavaScript works well as the database uses the language instead of procedures.

Pros

The following points highlight the advantages of MongoDB:

  • MongoDB scales elastically in terms of data volume and throughput. The technology gives you enough flexibility across various data centers with good consistency.
  • The flexible data model with dynamic schema, and with powerful GUI and command-line tools, makes it fast for developers to build and evolve applications
  • MongoDB stores data in flexible JSON-like documents, which makes data persistence and combining easy.
  • Costs are significantly lowered as MongoDB runs on commodity hardware. The technology gives out on-demand, pay-as-you-go pricing with annual subscriptions, along with 24/7 global support.

Cons

  • MongoDB doesn’t support joins like a relational database. Yet one can use joins functionality by adding by coding it manually. But it may slow execution and affect performance.
  • MongoDB stores key names for each value pair. Also, due to no functionality of joins, there is data redundancy. This results in increasing the unnecessary usage of memory.
  • To achieve the performance and scalability, MongoDB ditches the transaction support. This makes MongoDB very easy to scale horizontally which utilizes much cheap hardware to balance the load.

Why use MongoDB?

  • It makes all the way easy to index documents
  • Ensure scalability as large data can be handled easily by dividing it into several machines
  • Schema Less as any type of data stored in a separate document
  • It’s really simple to set up a MongoDB environment
  • It supports a flexible document-model which is fast to create

Express: A back-end web application framework

Express is a web application framework for Node.js. The framework simplifies the task of writing server code. For developers, there is no need to repeat the same code, as did earlier with the Node.js HTTP module.

The express framework is designed to build robust and scalable web applications and APIs. It is popularly known for its fast speed and minimal architecture.

Why use Express?

  • Asynchronous and Single-threaded.
  • It is fast and scalable
  • It helps with code reusability using a built-in router.
  • Robust API

React: Library for building User interfaces

React was developed by Facebook developers. The library is used for developing views in HTML. Instead of using templates to automate the creation of repetitive HTML elements, React uses a comprehensive programming language to built repetitive DOM elements. With this, we can run the same code on both the server and the browser. It completely differentiates MERN from MEAN.

The latest version of the React framework is React 16.9. It involves new features, bug fixes, and new deprecation warnings to help prepare for a future major release.

Features

The following features characterize React as a front-end development framework:

  • The virtual DOM is a lightweight copy of the original DOM. Includes all the properties of the real DOM.
  • Supports one-way data-binding which means that the data flows in one direction throughout the whole application. This gives better control over it.
  • ReactJS is component-based. Component logic is written in JavaScript rather than templates, so it is easy to pass the data through the app and keep the state out of the DOM.

React is the most loved web framework, with 74.5% of surveyed developers preferring to develop using it. The corresponding number for Angular is 57.6%, which places it in the 9th position. This report also found that in terms of popularity, React has overtaken Angular. While 31.3% of programmers preferred to React, the corresponding number for Angular is 30.7%.

Pros

The following points highlight the advantages of the React front-end framework:

  • Virtual DOM makes the user experience better and the developer’s work faster.
  • It relies on a virtual-DOM and re-render only what has really changed, hence better performance-wise
  • Helps tight binding of values or handling of local variables vs global variables
  • One-direction data flow provides a stable code

Cons

The following points showcase the disadvantages of the React front-end framework:

  • Integrating with some of the MVC frameworks would require one to be aware of what configuration changes to go through.
  • React technologies are updating and accelerating so fast that there is no time to write proper instruction. To solve this, developers write their own documentation for specific tools used by them in current projects.
  • It uses JSX. It’s a syntax extension, which allows mixing HTML with JavaScript. Developers and designers complain about JSX’s complexity and consequent steep learning curve.
  • The learning curve for the developers is quite high, ReactJS should not be the first one to start with for any new WEB developers

Why use React?

  • ReactJS supports Components that are basic building blocks of UI where each component has a logic. The components also support code reusability and make the web application easier to develop and understand.
  • Features like Virtual DOM, JSX, and Components make it much faster than the other frameworks.
  • React Native can easily code for Android and IOS apps using JavaScript and ReactJS.

Node.js: A JavaScript runtime environment

Node.js is built on Google Chrome and open-sourced by Google. The framework is built on Chrome’s JavaScript engine. It is designed to develop scalable network applications and also to execute JavaScript code outside of a browser. It works great when enclosed with an HTML page instead of using its module.

Node.js 14 replaces Node.js 13 as our current release line. Node.js 14 will be the Current release for the next 6 months and then promoted to Long-term Support (LTS) in October 2020.

Features

The following features characterize Node.js as a back-end development framework:

  • Being built on Google Chrome’s V8 JavaScript Engine, the Node.js library is very fast in code execution.
  • Node.js applications never buffer any data. These applications simply output the data in chunks.
  • All APIs of Node.js library are asynchronous, that is, non-blocking. It essentially means a Node.js-based server never waits for an API to return data.
  • Node.js uses a single-threaded model with event looping. The event mechanism helps the server to respond in a non-blocking way and makes the server highly scalable as opposed to traditional servers which create limited threads to handle requests.

Pros

The following points highlight the advantages of Node.js back-end framework:

  • Node.js is supported by the Google V8 engine which has the power to execute at the same time in the frontend using JavaScript.
  • It is open-source, friendly, and easy to use.
  • Node.js can help you use the web app and the server easily. This is because you have the same code which runs on the server-side end and as well as the same code which runs on the client-side.
  • Powerful server-side applications can be built with Node.js.

Cons

The following points showcase the disadvantages of Node.js back-end framework:

  • Node.js’s API or the application programming interface keeps changing continuously. It isn’t consistent at all.
  • Node.js makes you write everything from scratch. It might result in a decrease in productivity, slowing your work down.
  • Node.js doesn’t support multi-threaded programming yet. It is able to serve way more complicated applications than Ruby, but it’s not suitable for performing long-running calculations.

Why use Node.JS?

  • It supports open-source JavaScript Runtime Environment
  • It has a single-threaded model
  • Node.js has a fast code execution as it is built on Google Chrome’s JavaScript Engine
  • It is highly scalable

Advantages of MERN stack:

MERN is the most popular stack after MEAN. Here are some of the advantages of using the MERN stack:

  • It includes the entire web development cycle from front-end development to back end development
  • It facilitates the MVC (Model View Controller) architecture that makes the web development process work smoothly
  • MERN is considered a cost-effective stack as with open-source support, accessible set-up, and reduced learning time, it may have the lowest development cost
  • With the JavaScript stack, developers only need to be proficient in JavaScript and JSON
  • The four robust technologies are feasible enough to develop a full-fledged software
  • The framework comes with a pre-built extensive suite of testing tools
  • MERN framework helps to build flexible and scalable websites
  • The four technologies provide smooth integration with cloud platforms

Why did Startups choose the MERN stack for development over MEAN?

We already went through all the core components of the MERN stack. Each component has some of the other unique and useful features to offer and it directly affects a Startup agile development process.

Great community:

MERN has built a great community behind it. The reason behind its great community is JavaScript. As a Startup owner, you can always access tons of resources related to MERN or its components. Each one of the components is well-documented and provides scalable solutions. With this, Startups are free-to-play with their ideas.

Full Stack:

MERN offers a full-stack development environment which leads to end-to-end development. With this, Startups do not have to worry about other technologies or tools as they get everything in the stack itself.

MVC Architecture Support:

MERN supports Model View Controller architecture, which makes it easy for developers to develop workflow.

Low learning curve:

MERN is easy to learn and implement. The learning curve becomes easier if the developer is already familiar with JavaScript. The availability of proper tutorials, documentation, and community support also helps new learners in pursuit of expertise.

Pool Of Talent available:

A Startup needs good talent to bring their ideas to real-life. MERN is popular among developers due to JavaScript affiliation. In short, Startups will find no problem finding the talent for their projects.

Open Source:

All the four components are open source, which means that a Startup does not have to worry about licensing problems with MERN.

Testing tools:

MERN comes with its own set of testing tools suite. So it’s easy for new developers to test the software with the testing tools provided within the framework

Last words

This leads us to the end of our article, where we briefly discussed MERN and then shifted our focus on the benefits and popularity of MERN. All these factors are more than enough to make MERN a viable technology stack for any startup. Your startup idea might be unique and it requires a solid suite of skills that fulfill your startup’s development needs. A smart decision of hiring a full stack developer gives you and your business lucrative opportunities to work with the latest talent skills and also to boost revenues.

Janaspandana is presenting you with a series of technology stack helping you to digitally transform your idea into a minimum viable product.

You can connect with us by dropping an email to business@janaspandana.in

#TechWednesdays

We transform your ideas into reality, We focus on building great software products for businesses across the globe.

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store