In this article, we decided to take an in-depth look at the visual component of digital marketing campaigns sent by brands in various industries. Doesn’t matter – you just have an e-commerce project, a b2b marketplace, an information portal, etc. this is relevant for everyone
Web developers can use special services, tools, and extensions to quickly check a website or an application, find bugs, and improve their projects. We have collected more than 25 tools and libraries that simplify a programmer’s life.
Whether you are fully occupied or doing freelance, you need to brush up your skills on a regular basis because every business today wants to have an app. However, everyone doesn’t prefer custom solutions due to budget and time issues. Hence, app development companies such as Elluminati Inc. also offer readymade solutions.
There are a lot of services that can turn code creation from a never-ending bug search into a productive and pleasant activity. New solutions keep emerging all the time. And we have an up-to-date list for you today.
Read on to learn what tools every web developer should know about in 2021!
Working with Prototypes
Proto.io is an online service that will help you create a prototype of a web resource, conduct usability testing, check how blocks work and interact, test your project’s security, and much more. Viewing data, navigating, and checking your prototype’s functionality can be done directly in the browser. You can also make changes there.
Figma is a tool for prototyping websites. It helps dev teams design web pages considering even the smallest details and getting a user-accessible layout.
Tools to Simplify Development
Visual Studio Code (VSC)
You can edit, build, and debug source code in VS Code on macOS, Windows, and Linux. There’s navigation, node, and debug adapters, custom repositories, and support for Microsoft Azure, Node, React, Python, Angular, and Vue.
Technically speaking, Hugo is a static site generator or a general-purpose website framework. In other words, it’s a program for processing structured source data (media files, templates, texts, etc.) and generating HTML files ready for uploading to a server.
If you want to hand-code your own site without having to set up complex runtimes, dependencies, and databases, you need HUGO.
Hugo is for developers that need to build a blog, company site, portfolio, landing page, or a large website with hundreds or even thousands of web pages. With HUGO, data processing is fast, but you have to use the command line to interact with the program.
AI-based Sketch2Code can transform hand-written drawings to working HTML prototypes. This Microsoft development simplifies the layout process and offers sample designs of project pages.
GitHub Package Registry
GitHub Package Registry lets you manage code and package repository permissions in one place. Moreover, it also simplifies access control to CI/CD pipelines.
Media File Services
Favicons help us quickly visually match every browser tab with a certain website. If you tend to keep dozens of tabs open simultaneously and can’t read their names, favicons are your best friends that will help you find the website you need much faster. This online service will help you create a favicon and add it to your website. In a few clicks, it allows you to create icons of 16×16, 32×32, and 48×48 pixels.
Orion icon library provides flat, color, linear, and solid icons for various themes. You also have access to SVG files and vector graphics. The advantage of this service is the ability to create your own collections for specific projects.
Fontello generator creates icons in Web font format. The online services page provides icons that you can edit and configure by creating collections for your projects.
Image Hosting/Sharing Services
Here are a few popular resources with high-quality photo and video content every developer should be aware of:
- Flickr has stored thousands of digital photos and videos since 2004.
- Pexels allows unregistered users to download high-quality images.
- 500px shows the works of professional photographers.
- Google Photos is a widely used service for sharing images, documents, videos, etc.
- Photobucket has the best-in-class photo editor.
- ImgBB (free) allows you to upload images without having an account. Thus, you don’t need an email address.
PerfectPixel is a Chrome extension that helps compare a website layout with an existing project pixel by pixel. Translucent images are reflected on HTML pages, simplifying typesetting quality inspection.
With Funkify in Chrome, you can view a website through the eyes of people with disabilities.
The extension supports multiple simulators:
- Blurry Bianca uses foggy filters to create blurred images;
- Color Carl supports different types of color blindness filters;
- Dyslexia Dani imitates “dancing” letters in words;
- Trembling Trevor displays the uncontrolled movement of the mouse cursor;
- Tunnel Toby displays an image through the eyes of people that have tunnel vision (radical and rectangular);
- Peripheral Pierre allows you to adjust the blindness mode and spot size (areas not visible to the eyes);
- Elderly Ellen simultaneously displays blurred images with poor contrast and cursor control;
- Sunshine Sue displays an image as the screen is affected by sunlight (3 setting modes are available);
- Hyperactive Henny supports visualization of many pop-up tabs, sounds, and changing site settings;
- Keyboard Kim hides cursor – use the keyboard to manage tabs;
- Robot Robin displays the settings available on the page.
For four days, all functionality is available for free. For further use, you’ll need to pay $4.99/month. The paid version has simulator settings, the ability to create your own simulators, etc.
Endtest’s intelligent automated testing platform works with Safari, Chrome, Edge, and Firefox. The official site has instructions on how to create tests for web and mobile apps, information on advanced settings, and post results to different platforms (Slack, GitHub, Jenkins, Jira, and others).
The cloud service generates test load at high traffic volumes for websites, web and mobile apps, and a variety of APIs. Load Impact emulates over a million simultaneous visits to a resource when needed.
BugHerd helps to debug your website during its development phase. The tool analyzes communications between the user and the server. If a data transmission error occurs the developer will get a detailed description of the problem and a stability report.
BugHerd is a cloud service that simplifies work synchronization for geographically distributed dev teams.
The settings include filtering and sorting functions, a delegation of tasks, setting priorities, and access levels.
Communication and feedback exchange within the team is also available. You can evaluate the functionality of the service in the free version. After that, you’ll have to pay $29 per month to use the tool.
Website Vulnerability Scanner
Website Vulnerability Scanner is an online tool developed by Pentest-Tools allows you to see the website’s weak spots. It checks the resource by link and generates a report.
Have a bonus read to learn more about Vulnerability Management.
Conversion Optimization Tools
If you want to check the quality of a web project, Google Lighthouse is the right tool to choose. It will automatically assess the quality of SEO, site efficiency, and availability. Moreover, Google Lighthouse will also generate detailed reports on test results with recommendations for improvement.
Lucky Orange lets you track the behavior of users who leave your site quickly. The service with heat maps reproduces the actions of a person within the session and analyzes problems that prevent the audience’s attention.
If you want to know why 99% of your site visitors never turn into potential customers, this is the right tool to use. The analytics block shows a visitor’s surfing history, behavior, country of residence, number of views, how he/she got to the resource. Moreover, you can also check how efficient your keywords are, browser-supported languages, and other indicators.
The Meta Tags tool checks for website metadata and generates it for Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, Pinterest, Slack, and Google. The service is necessary for SEO-tuning the project, which will attract more visitors.
Frameworks & Languages
Git & Github
Due to the necessity to check code every day, every developer has to know how to use one of the version control repositories.
To become more advanced as a developer, you must also understand concepts such as “branching” and “merging.”
Today, Git and Github have become synonymous with the repository management tool and version control tool.
These are now the most important tools for a developer. Thus, we recommend that you really take a deep dive into Git and Github.
SQL is a crucial programming language that every programmer should know. In fact, SQL is the standard query language for working with databases. You can use it to read, update, and delete data from tables.
Since we use databases everywhere in the real world, a developer must have a good understanding of SQL.
In addition to knowing basic commands such as SELECT, INSERT, UPDATE, and DELETE, you should also know how to write complex queries using merges, aggregate functions, subqueries, and other advanced functions.
Python is a powerful high-level object-oriented programming language that is also quite versatile. Not only can you create large Java-based apps but also use Python to create useful scripts for automation. For example, you can take a look at this article about web scraping with Selenium and Python.
Python has many modules that make almost anything possible, from file system access and web application development to machine learning.
Python has an easy-to-use syntax, making it an ideal language for those new to programming.
Microsoft Excel, Word, and Powerpoint form a trilogy of basic office tools. Therefore, they are essential for software engineers and IT professionals, including developers, QA, BAs, and project managers.
Microsoft PowerPoint is the most popular tool for creating presentations. Programmers often need to make presentations, such as sharing knowledge between teams, presenting their ideas (to businesses), plans (to managers), etc. So you just can’t ignore PowerPoint.
Docker is based on a standardized way of executing code. It’s an operating system for containers. Just as a virtual machine creates a virtual representation of the server hardware (i.e., eliminates the need to manage it directly), containers create a virtual representation of the server operating system.
Once installed on each server, Docker provides access to simple commands needed to build, start, or stop containers.
Docker is a software platform for rapid application development, testing, and deployment. It packages software into standardized blocks (containers). Each container includes everything you need to run your app: libraries, system tools, code, and a runtime environment. With Docker, you can quickly deploy and scale apps in any environment, while staying confident that the code will work.
Using Docker, for example, on AWS (Amazon Web Services) gives developers and system administrators a reliable and cost-effective way to build, deliver, and run distributed apps of all sizes.
Kubernetes is a portable, extensible, and open-source platform for managing containerized workloads and services, which facilitates declarative customization and automation. The platform has a large, rapidly growing ecosystem, and its services, tech support, and tools are widely available.
Containers are a great way to link and run your apps. In a production environment, you need to manage the ones that run your apps and ensure there’s no downtime. For example, if a container fails, you need to run another one. Wouldn’t it be easier if this behavior was managed by a system? This is where Kubernetes comes to the rescue!
Kubernetes gives you a framework for the flexible operation of distributed systems. It handles application scaling and error handling, provides deployment templates, and much more. Thus, Kubernetes can easily manage the canary deployment of your system.
A canary deployment, or canary release, is a deployment pattern that allows you to roll out new code/features to a subset of users as an initial test.
Instead of Conclusions
Don’t forget about soft skills, of course. One of the most important abilities, expected of any developer, is the ability to work as part of a team.
Soft skills are your additional qualities as an employee and specialist. They are also paid attention to in job interviews. Moreover, soft skills are often crucial for junior developers when hiring, because employers are often interested in bringing up young specialists in their own staff.
Therefore, the concept of soft skills (agile skills) includes:
- The ability to convey your message and hear your companion;
- The ability to discuss, think logically, and come up with the most optimal solution;
- Calm attitude to constructive criticism and stress resistance.
Nowadays, it’s almost impossible to create a successful software product alone, that’s why most projects are a team effort. Here you can’t do without soft skills. Every developer needs them to interact with colleagues as effectively as possible.
In general, in the IT industry, there is no limit to perfection because this field is changing every day and motivates you to constantly learn and hone your professional skills. In such circumstances, it is difficult to reach an ideal – the ideal is the “top,” which you can no longer rise above. However, the stack of knowledge described above, combined with soft skills will definitely help you become an in-demand developer.
Of course, without proper tech skills (or hard skills), you simply can not perform tasks. They are the ones to set a threshold of entry into the profession.