вторник, 24 ноября 2015 г.

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Mykola Bova
[web, mobile, enterprise]

fb: Никола Бова
skype: mykola_bova
mobile: +380 98 322 54 80

The Myth of the Full-stack Developer

The Full-stack Developer


My defensive tendencies are normally put on high alert when I hear that magic phrase. Stacks are a lot bigger than what they used to be, and being able to claim one has acquired refined skills at every layer of web development is certainly not a small claim. Does this mean you have a broad range of skills or you specialise in everything?
For a time (allegedly) Facebook only hired full-stack engineers. This was of course when they were building the first few versions of Facebook, which, lets face it had a relatively simple php backend and wasn't anything special design-wise.
Stacks are a lot bigger than they used to be
Stacks are a lot bigger than they used to be...

Wait, Wait… What is a Full-stack Web Developer After All?

Summary: a full-stack web developer is someone who has honed skills in both front-end web design/development and back-end/server coding. You can count on a full-stack web developer to design, code, implement and maintain a fully functional modern interactive website on his/her own (not just a static website with a few pages).

Full-stack Web Developer

With the ever evolvement of the almighty World Wide Web, new job functions are created virtually every day. Just a few years ago, you only needed a web designer to create the visual design in Photoshop and/or Dreamweaver and aweb developer to code the front-end/back-end scripts and the website was ready to go. At that time, websites were charged based on the number of “pages” (a concept borrowed from print design).
Fast forward to the present, we now have (not a exhaustive list) :
  • visual designer
  • web designer
  • UI designer
  • UX designer
  • interaction designer
  • art director
  • front-end developer
  • back-end developer
  • web developer
  • mobile developer
  • database developer
  • database administrator

What is a Full Stack developer?

Is it reasonable to expect mere mortals to have mastery over every facet of the development stack? Probably not, but Facebook can ask for it. I was told at OSCON by a Facebook employee that they only hire ‘Full Stack’ developers.  Well, what does that mean?
To me, a Full Stack Developer is someone with familiarity in each layer, if not mastery in many and a genuine interest in all software technology.
Good developers who are familiar with the entire stack know how to make life easier for those around them. This is why I’m so against silos in the work place. Sure, politics and communication challenges get in the way in large organizations. I think the point Facebook is going for with their hiring policy is, if smart people use their heads and their hearts, a better product gets built in less time.