Friday, October 12, 2018

Top 5 Frameworks Java Web Developers Should Learn

Hello guys, if you are a Java developer and wondering which web development frameworks you should learn in 2018 then you have come to the right place. In this article, I am going to share top 5 frameworks Java developers can learn to keep pace with modern day development. This article includes backend frameworks like Spring and Spring Boot as well as front-end frameworks like Angular 2+ and React JS. You might be wondering, why Java developer needs to learn Angular or JavaScript framework but the truth is that you need those to work in the real world. For example, you work in an application where backend is written in Java but front-end is written using Angular or React JS.  In order to work in a team, you need to contribute in both backend and frontend, and that's where this knowledge helps. You might have also seen Job description where a company needs developers with Java + Angular or Java + React skill.

Anyway, this is the second part of my article on what should Java programmer learn this year. In the first part, 10 Things Java developer should learn where I have focused on essential upgrades like Java 8, Java 9, Spring 5 etc, but in this article, I'll talk about some of the best Java frameworks you should learn to give your career a boost.

Technology changes really fast, in just a couple of years what was the hottest technology or framework of 2014 is no longer used anymore and as a programmer and application developer, our biggest challenge is to keep pace with the technology.

A good example of this is the Spring framework. Earlier it was just enough to know how to use Spring framework to get a job in Java web development world but today you should know Spring Boot and Spring Cloud to be part of modern day Java development.

The Spring framework is the most popular Java framework and almost all of Java development happens using that, except for Android apps. It is constantly evolving and for the benefit of developer itself but you also need to put effort to keep pace with it.

Apart from evolution on Spring framework, there are other changes coming in how you build a Java web application. Things like JSP, GWT, JSF are no longer used to build frameworks instead it's Angular and React which is preferred over these traditional Java view technologies and that's why it's important for all Java developers to learn these JavaScript front-end libraries and frameworks.



Top 5 Frameworks for Java Programmers

Here is my list of some of the best Java frameworks of 2018. This includes Java web development frameworks like Spring Boot, Java Cloud development framework like Spring Cloud, JavaScript Front-end development frameworks like Angular and React, and Big Data framework like Apache Spark.

It's not necessary to learn all these frameworks, instead, you should choose which is most important for your depending on your requirement and job profile. For most of the Java developer, I suggest, Spring Boot because this is now the standard way to use Spring in many companies.

But, if you are working on a project where you are using React or Angular then feel free to learn those.


1. Spring Boot

You might have heard about the magical prowess of Spring Boot. It's a game-changing framework which is probably the best thing happen to Java world since Spring framework.

Much like Spring, which aims to solve problems associated with enterprise Java development, Spring Boot solves the problem associated with Spring Application development to make it even easier for Java developer to create Java web application using Spring.

Even though Spring offers a lot in terms of dependency injection and many templates like JdbcTemplateRestTemplate it also expects a lot from you in terms of learning curve, configuration, and dependency management, which creates development friction.

Spring Boot aims to solve that by introducing a host of convenient features like auto-configurationstarter dependencySpring Boot CLI and Spring Actuator.

The auto-configuration feature takes away all the pain for configuration common functionalities e.g. it can automatically configure JdbcTemplate and an in-memory database if their JAR dependency is present in the classpath. It makes 200+ such decisions which can help to auto-configure spring web, security, and other aspects.

Similarly, starter dependency removes the pain for jotting down all dependency you need and working to find a compatible version which plays well together.

Now you can get most of the common dependency by including just one starter POM e.g. spring-boot-starter-web can pull Spring MVC, Jackson and Embedded Tomcat server.

These are just some of the features of Spring Boot which we have explored. If you are interested in Spring Boot then I suggest you join a Spring Boot course like Learn Spring Boot - Rapid Spring Application Development to learn this awesome framework in detail.

Top 5 Java Frameworks to Learn in 2018


If you love reading books then Spring Boot in Action by Craig Walls is also a good place to start with.



2. Spring Cloud

Developing application for cloud has its own challenges and Spring Cloud aims to solve those. It provides tools for Java developers to quickly build some of the common patterns of cloud-based application e.g. configuration management, service discovery, circuit breaks, client-side load balancing, intelligent routing, distributed sessions etc.

When you develop a cloud-based Java application you don't need to worry about Hardware, installing the operating system, database, and other software but your application still needs those to function.

Cloud providers like Cloud-Found and Heroku provide those services to you but you need to do a lot of work to access those services and that's where Spring Cloud helps.

It provides simple and efficient cloud connector to access those services by abstracting all cloud-specific details, which means you can access those essential services in the cloud just like you do in non-cloud environment e.g. you can connect to a database by just knowing host and port and login credentials.

If you are thinking about cloud-based Java application e.g. Microservices and want to learn how Spring Cloud can help you, I suggest you check out Master Microservices with Spring Boot and Spring Cloud, one of the best course to learn these two great frameworks.

best Java framework of 2018



If you prefer to learn from books then Cloud Native Java by Josh Long and company is another great resource to start with.


3. Angular

This one of the most popular JavaScript framework for developing front-end. It's developed and backed by Google, one of the most innovative companies of the modern day.

Angular is not a new framework, it's been around for a couple of years. The earlier version of Angular was known as Angular JS but from Angular 2 the framework was completely different and re-written.

It offers declarative templates with Data binding and brings dependency injection and unit testing to test your client-side code, which makes it a really popular framework for front-end development.


It also uses TypeScript, a JavaScript wrapper developed by Microsoft which makes it easy to write Object-oriented code in JavaScript. It's a superset of JavaScript and provides nice Java-like syntax to create modern GUI application.

The code is then translated to JavaScript by the compiler so that it can be run in the browser. I strongly recommend to learn either Angular or React to Java developer to become a full-stack developer and if you are interested in Angular, then Angular 6 (Formerly Angular 2) - The Complete Guide is the perfect course to start with.

Top 5 Frameworks Java Web Developers Should Learn



But if you want to start with some free resources then you can also check out this list of free Angular Courses for web developers.



4. React

Along with Angular, React is another popular JavaScript library to create front-end or GUI. Its component-based model has really impressed web developers all around the world.

Many Java projects which hash web GUI are now using React instead of using FreeMarker, JSP, Thymeleaf or other standard Java View technologies.

The main benefit of React is that you can create a component and reuse them which makes the development easier e.g. if you have a list of elements with just different data, you can reuse your custom list component created using React with different data.

Just like Angular is backed by Google, React is backed by Facebook, which means it's not going to fade in a couple of years and any investment you made in learning React will go a long way to the server you in your career.

In short, React is a great framework to learn in 2018 for both Java and web developer and if you want to learn then React 16 - The Complete Guide is is the best course to start with.

Top web development framework for Java developers



But, If you need some free resources then you can also check out my list of free React courses to try.



5. Apache Spark

Apache Spark is the next big framework in the Big Data Space. Even though Hadoop is much more popular and used in the Big Data Space, things are changing quickly because of improved speed and performance of Apache Spark.

It's touted that its 100 times faster than Hadoop, which makes it ideal for analysis huge amount of data today's Global applications are generating.

If you are a Java developer and interested in Big Data space then learning Apache Spark can give your career a boost. There are a lot of opportunities in the Big Data space and huge demands for a developer with Hadoop and Apache Spark experience.

If you want to learn Apache Spark in 2018, I suggest you take a look at Apache Spark with Java course on Udemy. I got in just $10.99 USD earlier this year and you can get it too on Udemy's frequently flash sale.

Top Java Frameworks 2017  2018 2019


Btw, if you need some gree courses to start with then you can check out this list of free Apache Spark Courses for Java developers.


That's all about some of the best Java Frameworks you can learn in 2018 to give your career a boost. It's important to keep pace with technology as it changes really fast and if you are not constantly updating yourself then you will be left behind in your company and career. Technology also opens new opportunities e.g. you can go into Javascript front-end development by learning Angular or React and explore Big Data space by learning Spark.

You might be questioning, why Java developer should learn JavaScript framework?  But, let me tell you, in most of the company, a Java developer is not only responsible for server-side coding but also client-side coding, creating front-end GUIs.

Even though their primary skill is Java, you also learn all related technology to be useful and provide value. That's why most of the Java developer you will meet knows about front-end technologies like HTMLCSSJavaScript and other common skills like SQLLinux, and Algorithms etc.

Apart from the evolution on how we create a web application, there are new opportunities coming on Big Data and Machine learning space and there are certain Java frameworks like Apache Spark and Hadoop which you can learn to take advantage of these upcoming opportunities.

React is also everywhere these days. If you are looking to increase your value as a Java web developer, you need this framework under your belt!  With Facebook and its massive power behind it and a growing community of UI developers, React is well supported and always improving. React powers Facebook, Netflix, the New York Times, Uber, and many other apps.

If you feel these top 5 frameworks are not enough and you already know these and looking for some more awesome tools and libraries to learn in 2018, here are some interesting articles to check out Java frameworks related to automation, testing, web service, and microservices.

10 Testing Tools and Libraries Java Developer Should Know
5 Spring Framework Books for experienced Developers
20 Spring MVC Interview Questions with Answers
10 Books Java Developers Should Read in 2018
20 Books Java Books from Last 5 Years
Top 5 courses to learn Microservice with Spring Cloud
Top 20 libraries Java developers should know
Java 10 Released - 10 New Features You Should Know
Finally, Java 10 has var to declare local variables
The 2018 DevOps RoadMap - How to learn DevOps better

Thanks for reading this article so far. If you like these Java Frameworks then please share with your friends and colleagues. If you have any questions or feedback then please drop a note.

5 comments :

Anonymous said...

Top 5 "Java"? Frameworks

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Anonymous said...

Of course it is a good idea to learn React/Angular/Javascript but please stay away from totally misleading headins.

Javin Paul said...

@Anonymous, Noted, I am going to change the title to "10 Frameworks Java Developers should Learn" which can justify learning Java + JavaScript frameworks. In real world, we need to learn multiple technologies e.g. React, even if we are Java developers. In project, what comes to we as job, we need to learn and do it.

Javin Paul said...

I changed the title to Top 5 Java + JavaScript frameworks, hope this make sense now.

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