The Rise of Web Development and Design in the 21st century – Insider Perspectives from A Technological Greenhorn




This article was written by Vanessa Lim, an intern here at Hackwagon Academy.


The importance of web development and design

In recent years, many of us have grown accustomed to new products being constantly churned out. One driving force behind all this is web development and design; a hot topic in recent years as to which is more important. But this article isn’t about which is more important, rather why they are important. Here’s an example:

We’ve seen smartphones take the world by storm and, at the forefront of this revolution are technological giants Apple and Samsung, which we’ve seen going head to head to claim the top spot of the smartphone industry. But when you really think about it, how were smartphones able to gain such traction in the market?

Some of the answers that pop into your head may be things such as convenience, aesthetics or multi-functionality. However, we can break these things down into one common, underlying trait: the usability of the product. Sure, the product itself may be functional, but the main selling point lies in its convenience, and the many functions it offers everyone. This not only means that the average tech-savvy teenager which has grown up in an environment surrounded by technology, but your grandpa, your niece, the middle-aged woman that lives opposite you that owns a radio which you’ve only seen in vintage stores.

The simple answer then, can be found in the interface design of the phone and its various applications itself, done through web development and design.

What is web development and web design?

Web design doesn’t just mean the pretty frills added to the icon of an application found on the home screen of your phone, but rather, the user interface which encapsulates the entire user experience of the product. Meanwhile, web developers come in two forms – front and back end. They are responsible for expanding on the web design. Unlike browser developers, web developers are involved in the usage of non-traditional applications that are not just found on browsers like Internet Explorer, Google Chrome, Safari or Mozilla Firefox. Instead, it has been transferred to new technologies that we see – smartphones, smart watches, and the like. However, this is not to say that web design is more important than web development, it’s not.

To clarify, it would be unwise to disregard the interdependence that web development and design have on each other. Sure, a seamless or jaw-dropping web design may boost the quality of a product, but without an online presence, your product will be like the beautiful girl or handsome man one meets in a bar but didn’t manage to ask for their number; the original song one heard a street busker sing as they walked down the streets in a foreign country – eventually forgotten about, with no means to contact or gain access to. How then, can you create a bridge to help connect people to your product? This then falls back on a web developer – to create the link between any product that you create, to anyone and everyone who may appreciate its quality and desire it.

How can this benefit companies and businesses?

This not only provides companies with a platform to build this presence and rapport with future and current customers, but also provides any company or individual opportunities to continually push out future products or features in the future. It is a long-term investment and not a one-trick pony that will ensure the longevity and continued success of any business.

I’ve both used and seen what goes on behind the scenes to create a flawless website to enhance the user experience, as well as seen friends try and fail with prototype smartphone applications. The differentiating factor of which, seems to be the ability to place equal importance on both web design and development, and not value one over the other. As much as web browsers are here to stay, they are still the foundation of any good application found in any smartphone or smart technologies.

So why should I learn web development or web design?

With the clear direction that we are heading to – towards a smarter world (forgive the pun), it would be the smart thing to do to invest in skills such as these. Even in this day and age, everything seems to link back to the web in some way or the other. If you have anything to do with business, it would be nothing short of necessary to familiarize yourself with web development and design, to not only stay competitive in this extremely fast-paced and sometimes cutthroat environment.

The way I see it, even if all this hasn’t convinced you yet; what do you have to lose by upgrading your skillset? You may even end up supercharging your career and gain an edge over others in your industry. I for one, may be new to this, but I am taking charge of my career; so what’s stopping you from doing the same?