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Frameworks for app and website development
An interview with Moritz Bätzel
itPortal24: Welcome Moritz Bätzel. You are co-founder of the young start-up enwork, what exactly do you do at enwork and what is your job there?
Moritz Bätzel: Hello, thank you very much for the invitation, I am very happy to be here. We at enwork are developing the first job platform for the so-called Netflix generation. We ensure that the application processes are now easier, more transparent and more equal. For both employees and employers. We have created a cloud platform for this, on which anyone can register free of charge and get started right away. Of course, a lot of development work was necessary for this. This is where I come in. I developed large parts of the website and web app and the entire server infrastructure. Today at enwork I take care of the maintenance of our infrastructure, the development of new features for our cloud services and our DevOps processes.
What exactly is a framework anyway?
itPortal24: Today we want to talk to you about frameworks that you as a full-stack developer are probably very familiar with. Can you briefly give us a definition for the word framework in your own words?
Moritz Bätzel: A framework is a collection of tools, ready-made features in the form of code snippets and rules that are intended to help implement software projects more quickly. These are often flexible templates in the form of project structures for specific purposes which were created on the basis of various “best practices”. The whole thing can be compared to a Lego kit. There are many individual building blocks and instructions on how to assemble them. As a “developer”, however, I am not dependent on following instructions, but can use the individual components to pursue and implement my own goals.
Framework for app and website development?
itPortal24: Many of our partner agencies now use frameworks that make sense for both the app and website creation. Which special frameworks are you familiar with and which framework would you recommend if you had to create both an app and a website?
Moritz Bätzel: I've already worked with a few frameworks. There are some solutions in the area of development for multiple platforms, but React.js or React Native clearly stands out. React is a program library developed by Facebook for the development of web apps based on modern programming techniques. React Native has taken this approach and expanded it for mobile app development. In this way, projects can be set up that serve both as a basis for a web app and can also be used as a native app on mobile devices. An alternative to React is the Flutter framework developed by Google. This is a single framework with which apps for the web as well as for Android and iOS can be written relatively easily. Compared to React.js or React Native, however, Flutter is relatively new to the market and for this reason it can be difficult to find developers for this framework.
Advantages and disadvantages of frameworks
itPortal24: In your opinion, what advantages and disadvantages do frameworks offer compared to the classic programming language?
Moritz Bätzel: Frameworks have the great advantage that new projects can be set up and initial prototypes implemented easily. The developers behind the Django server framework always speak of “Batteries-Included”, the ability to display what has been programmed directly without having to spend a lot of time preparing the project. For agile software development, frameworks are great tools to quickly test the app or website on the market. By using a framework, however, you agree to adhere to the given rules and processes of the framework. So it can be difficult later to integrate functions that were not covered by the original purpose of the framework. A good example of this is when you decide to build a hammer out of Lego. A first prototype can be built quickly and users can test the general handling. But as soon as the “durability” function is to be built in to drive nails into boards, a lot of time is spent working against and not with the framework.
Framework recommendation for beginners
itPortal24: Now you have a lot of experience in programming with frameworks. Which framework would you recommend for newbies in this field?
Moritz Bätzel: For a modern development approach, I would recommend using Google's Flutter. Projects can be set up quickly and the first functions can be integrated in just a few simple steps. React.js and React Native offer more control over the workflow compared to Flutter, but require more time when it comes to setting up a project. In addition, there are a few other frameworks that I haven't even discussed yet and that are perhaps much better suited for the intended purpose. If you are new to the field, you should just take a look at a few frameworks and find out for yourself which one can work best with.
itPortal24: Thank you for taking the time to do this interview about frameworks. I wish you a nice day and continued success with enwork.
Moritz Bätzel: Thank you for letting me be here.
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