Front-End Web Development Tag Archives - General Assembly Blog | Page 2

HTML for Web Development: Building the Bones of Your Website

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Hypertext Markup Language, or HTML, is a programming language used to describe the structure of information on a web page. Together, HTML, CSS, and JavaScript make up the essential building blocks of websites, with CSS controlling a page’s appearance, and JavaScript programming its functionality. You can think of HTML as providing the bones of a web page, while CSS provides the skin, and JavaScript provides the brains.

A web page can contain headings, paragraphs, images, videos, and many other types of data. Front-end developers use HTML elements to specify what kind of information each item on a web page contains — for instance, the “p” element indicates a paragraph. Developers also write HTML code to specify how different items relate to one another in the overall structure of the page.

Every website you open in your browser, from social networks to music services, uses HTML. A look under the hood of any website would reveal HTML code providing structure for all the page’s components.

A look at the HTML code that structures General Assembly’s website.
A look at the HTML code that structures General Assembly’s website.

How HTML Works in a Web Page

HTML plays a couple of significant roles in a web page. First, we use the structure created by our HTML code to reference, enhance, and manipulate elements on a web page using CSS and JavaScript. For instance, you could use HTML to mark all of the headings on a web page, and then use CSS to specify the font, size, and color you want to apply to those headings to reflect your organization’s branding, or simply a visual design developed for the site. Second, HTML lets us indicate the roles of different elements to search engines and other services that index the content and summarize it for other users. For instance, marking the caption of an image with the “figcaption” element and enclosing the image and its caption in the “figure” element helps a search engine understand that these two pieces of content are related, and that the caption describes the associated image.

Learning HTML at General Assembly

Whether you want to land a job as a front-end or full-stack web developer, or just want to dip your toe into programming, HTML is a natural place to start. Learning HTML, along with CSS and basic JavaScript, provides you with the fundamental skills necessary to create your own interactive single-page website.

In GA’s part-time courses in Front-End Web Development and HTML, CSS & Web Design, and our career-changing, full-time Web Development Immersive program, you’ll get hands-on practice coding your own projects, from static personal and business websites to single-page applications like games and interactive photo galleries. These projects give you practice using basic HTML tags and structuring pages with different components, including headers, footers, sidebars, and navigation. You’ll also code CSS and JavaScript, and learn how to put all three together to build websites that implement modern standards and use best practices for front-end development.

Ask a Question About Our Coding Programs

Meet Our Expert

Sasha Vodnik is a front-end web developer and author who teaches Front-End Web Development and JavaScript Development at General Assembly’s San Francisco campus. He also writes books on HTML, CSS, and JavaScript and creates video courses through Lynda.com.

“I love meeting students from a wide variety of industries, with a whole spectrum of goals, from all over the world. I’m continually inspired by the thoughtful, creative projects they build in the course that showcase their new skills and unique vision.”

– Sasha Vodnik, Front-End Web Development Instructor, General Assembly San Francisco

JavaScript for Web Development: Building an Interactive Website

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JavaScript is essential to nearly every action you take online, whether it’s entering credit card information, streaming videos and music, or interacting on social networks, just for starters. It’s the programming language used to make webpages interactive — and it’s perhaps the most widely used language because of it.

Developers use JavaScript to create a wide range of features, from simple user interface (UI) functionality to complex visual effects, including:

  • Interfaces like image carousels.
  • News feeds that continue to load new information as you scroll through them.
  • The ability to submit information entered into a Google Doc, survey form, or online payment system.

Features like these are part of a website’s front-end code, which is responsible for what users see and interact with. Front-end JavaScript code runs in a user’s browser, where it’s integrated with the HTML code that makes up a page’s structure and the CSS code that specifies how each of the page’s elements should be displayed.

But not all JavaScript is written for the front end. Developers can also use it for a website’s back end, which is executed on servers, or specialized computers that run websites behind the scenes.

JavaScript allows developers to perform many basic tasks common to a wide variety of programming languages. For instance, conditional logic allows a developer to specify that a section of code should be executed only if a certain condition is met. Imagine you were creating a webpage that accessed weather information for the user’s current location, and then displayed an icon representing the current temperature. You might use a conditional statement to specify that if the temperature is below freezing, the screen should display an image of an icicle.

Conditional Statement

JavaScript developers can organize their code a couple different ways. One approach, known as functional programming, organizes code into functions, which are sets of JavaScript statements that take values as input and return results. Another technique, known as object-oriented programming, groups values and code together into collections known as objects.

A basic familiarity with JavaScript gives you a strong foundation for building applications with popular frameworks such as React, Angular, and Vue, and libraries like jQuery. Frameworks and libraries are pre-written collections of JavaScript code that make it easier for you to build your own applications. While using a framework or a library can allow you to program without needing to write the code for some tasks yourself, a foundation in JavaScript coding without frameworks or libraries — known as vanilla JavaScript — can be a great asset in customizing your apps and debugging them when things aren’t working exactly as you expect.

JavaScript at General Assembly

At General Assembly, JavaScript is a core part of all of our web development courses. It’s one of the central technologies covered in our full-time Web Development Immersive and Web Development Immersive Remote programs, in which students prepare for a career in full-stack web development. You can focus exclusively on the language in our part-time JavaScript Development course (also available online), or get a basic introduction to how JavaScript fits with HTML and CSS in our part-time Front-End Web Development course.

GA instructors help students build JavaScript skills step by step, sharing knowledge and best practices they’ve accumulated as developers in the field. In addition to in-class exercises and homework, students also apply their new knowledge by building projects that make use of all the tools they’ve learned. Students leave with portfolio-worthy projects that demonstrate their new skills, as well as next steps for building apps with JavaScript and learning more about the language.

Ask a Question About Our Coding Programs

Meet Our Expert

Sasha Vodnik is a front-end web developer and author who teaches Front-End Web Development and JavaScript Development at General Assembly’s San Francisco campus. He also writes books on HTML, CSS, and JavaScript and creates video courses through LinkedIn Learning.

“I aim to help students recognize what they already know and connect it to what they’re trying to do. At GA, we teach how to troubleshoot and find answers so you can grow as a developer long after you leave the classroom.”

– Sasha Vodnik, JavaScript Development Instructor, General Assembly San Francisco

How to Break Into Software Engineering

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What Is Web Development General Assembly Mike Dang

Learning to code is the ultimate career-booster, whether you’re looking to elevate your current skill set or make it your full-time work. Having software engineering skills can land you a job in nearly any industry, including tech startups, financial services, media, and beyond.

Coding knowledge is power — whether you’re an independent business owner, creative professional, or simply someone with an interest in the web. When you know how to code, you can build your own website and have full control over your web presence. If you work regularly with your company’s web team, you’ll be able to speak their language and improve communication — and you’ll be able to make some changes yourself instead of calling on them to do it.

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Which Text Editor Should I Use While I’m Learning To Code?

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When you start learning how to code, it can make a difference which editor you use. Your editor will help shape your path as a developer, so trying out different methods is vital. Front-end developer and writer for Smashing Magazine, Anselm Hannemann, gives you his tips for selecting and getting started with your first editor.

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Invibed Helps Millennials Take Control of Their Finances

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Danielle Pascarella
Danielle left a cushy job as an Investment Specialist to teach others how to become more financially stable. With a little help from her Front End Web Development instructors, she launched Invibed, a website that teaches Millenials how to save money and be more fiscally responsible through shared money-saving tips. 

Get updated on Twitter: @danipascarella + @Invibed

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Ready for Takeoff: Learning to Code Helps GA Grad Land Job at Nasa

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Before her Front-End Web Development course at General Assembly DC, Kaitlynn worked for a small non-profit on Capitol Hill. By merging her Economics degree, business development experience, and desire to have a career in web development, she landed a job at NASA as a Software Engineer. 

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Fussy Empowers Cosmetologists to Take Charge of their Careers

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Patrice Peck
Patrice’s idea for starting Fussy, a social network for cosmetologists aiming to achieve their professional goals, stems back to her days as a teenager.A solo non-tech founder, she not only single-handedly manages her business, but she also built her website MVP while learning to code in GA’s Front End Web Development course. Follow her on Twitter: @SpeakPatrice.

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Top 3 Tech Skills To Get Hired In The Digital Age

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When you graduate from college, you have a degree in some specific subject(s). But it is becoming increasingly important that you have practical skills when you enter the workplace, in addition to the specific knowledge you gained during your college career.

When you enter the workforce, no matter who you work for, there will be some learning curve as you learn how they do business, what tools they use, and their processes and procedures. But wouldn’t it be great if on day one when you arrived at that sweet new job, you were teaching them new tricks?

If you learn these three digital age skills, there’s a good chance that you will blow their doors off when you start work on Monday.

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Meet Burbio, The Digital Community Calendar Perfect for Busy Families

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burbio

Overwhelmed with your ever-growing schedule of events? Us too. Thankfully, dream team Julie & Dennie Roche have a solution for us. Burbio let’s you find your local school, community, and sports calendars, making daily event organization simple and pain-free. We caught up with Julie, the company’s CEO and a Front End Web Development graduate, to hear her story as business continues to boom.

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Here’s How to Learn HTML at Any Level or Budget

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Learn to Code HTML

Have you been thinking about learning HTML? If so, you’re not alone: These days, it  seems like nearly everyone — including New York City’s former mayor, Mike Bloomberg, who tweeted his New Year’s resolution to learn to code a few years back — is intent on learning programming languages. If you want to learn HTML, a fundamental building block for front-end web development, there’s no need to delay. Workshops and on-demand classes make it easy to learn HTML, regardless of your budget, schedule, or prior knowledge.

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