Node.js is a packaged compilation of Google’s V8 JavaScript engine, the libuv platform abstraction layer, and a core library, primarily written in JavaScript. This open source, cross-platform runtime environment is used for developing server-side and networking applications, and its one in which the Britefish development team has extensive expertise.

Node.js is a programming language that was designed to create real-time websites with push capability, inspired by such applications as Gmail. It gives our developers a tool for working in the non-blocking, event-driven I/O paradigm.


Why Use Node.JS?

Node.js is a language that we use because it shines in real-time web applications employing push technology over websockets. This is revolutionary for developers because we finally have web applications with real-time, two-way connections that allow for both client and server initiated communication, which allows them to freely exchange data. This is huge, as it’s in stark contrast to the typical web response paradigm, where the client always initiates communication.

The programming language is all based on the open web stack, HTML, CSS and JS, running over the standard port 80. While it may seem like we’ve had these capabilities for years in the form of Flash and Java Applets, the reality is that those were just sandboxed environments that use the web as a transport protocol to be delivered to the client. Those applications were run in isolation and often operated over non-standard ports, which often required extra permissions and more. Node.js is great for writing such applications as static file servers, web application frameworks, messaging middle ware, servers for HTML5 multi-player games, and more.

With all of its advantages, Node.js is the new standard and plays a critical role in the technology stack of many high-profile companies who depend on its unique benefits. Node.js really shines when it comes to building fast, scalable network applications, as it’s capable of handling a massive number of simultaneous connections with high throughput, which equates to high scalability. Compared to traditional web-serving techniques where each connection spawns a new thread, taking up system RAM, Node.js operates on a single-thread, using non-blocking I/O calls so that it’s able to support tens of thousands of concurrent connections held in the event loop.

Node.js with Britefish

Our team uses Node.js because it’s able to develop applications that make heavy use of the ability to run JavaScript both on the client side as well as on the server side. This means that you benefit from the re-usability of code and the lack of context switching. Node.js is a programming language that was created to solve the I/O scaling problem, and it does so very well.