Features of Node.js
Asynchronous and Event Driven − All APIs of the Node.js library are non-blocking which essentially means a Node.js-based server never waits for an API to return data. The server moves to another event and starts executing it while the previous API when returns data automatically deals with it at that point of time after completing the current event.
Single-Threaded but Highly Scalable − Node.js uses a single-threaded model with an event loop which means that when a user makes a network call to the server it does not wait for the request to return instead it executes the next event and after the network call is done, it adds it in the queue. The event mechanism helps the server to respond in a non-blocking way and makes the server highly scalable.
No Buffering − Node.js applications never buffer any data. They essentially yield the data in pieces.
When a client makes a request to the server which can either be intensive work (calculative work) or I/O intensive, then if the request is for the I/O intensive, the server might have to communicate with another server, file system or database which might take a few seconds to get the response which eventually makes the thread unavailable for another request. If there are 10 clients, then each gets a delay of let's just say 3 seconds, and to respond to the 10th client, it will take 30 seconds.
Node.js server has only one thread to communicate with the client which makes it unreliable in nature. It uses the concept of asynchronous and non-blocking I/O, in which when a client makes a request to the Node.js server, the single thread will send that request to the first worker which is a part of the Node.js server, then the Node.js make a request to the worker to fetch the result from the server/file system/database which makes the current thread free. If another client makes another request then again it will send that request to the second worker and again the thread gets free. When the response from the server is received while the second client request is still getting processed then the Node.js server uses a callback function which then goes into the event loop and gets added into the event queue.
Who Are the Workers that are Accepting the Request? Node.js uses the concept of Libuv which is a special library built for node.js but can be used as other applications as well. In Node.js, only one thread is used but behind the scene, the kernel is implementing multiple threads which are the workers themselves.
Netflix - Netflix, the world's leading Internet television network with over 117 million users, is one of those top companies that trusted their servers to Node.js (the whole user interface on Netflix.com is built with Node). The engineers decided to use Node.js in order to deliver a blazing-fast, modular, and lightweight application. Accordingly, Netflix’s web app load time has been reduced by 70%.
WALMART - Walmart is the world’s largest retailer with approximately $481.32 billion global net sales in 2017. The development team especially appreciated Node.js' famous asynchronous I/O and its single-threaded event loop models that can efficiently handle concurrent requests.
UBER - Uber is an American multinational ride-hailing company offering services that include peer-to-peer ride-sharing, ride service hailing, and food delivery considerable challenge of ensuring a reliably excellent experience for its customers and drivers at a quickly-growing scale, Uber has built its massive matching system on Node.js.
Medium - Medium is a popular online publishing platform developed by Evan Williams and launched in August 2012. Medium is a data-driven platform that evolves along with the users and their behavior. Node.js is particularly useful when it comes to running A/B tests to get a better comprehension of product changes and experiment with new ideas.
List of Node.js Alternatives
1. ELIXIR - It is a dynamic and functional language used in building scalable and maintainable applications. It is an Open Source and Compatible with Mac, Windows, Linux.
Features of Elixir:
built on top of the Erlang VM
It has Ruby-like syntax
It has dynamic typing
2. PERL – Perl is a stable, cross platform programming language. It is used for mission critical projects in the public and private sectors.
Features of Perl:
Object-oriented, procedural and functional
C/C++ library interface
3. ASP.NET - Either it is web-based applications, complex APIs, real-time development, or even Microservices, ASP.NET is a once such complete package. That makes it one of the top qualifying contenders and an alternative to Node.js.
Features of ASP.NET:
Working with data
Client Script and Client Frameworks
4. CEYLON – It is a programming language that has a similar syntax to C# and Java. Few key highlights that define Ceylon are it being an imperative, statically typed, blocked structure, and object-oriented in behavior.
Features of Ceylon:
Cross platform execution
Powerful type system
Type inference, flow-sensitive typing, and typesafe null
5. REBOL - Rebol is a cross-platform language developed for effective data exchange with the multi-paradigm approach. With Network communication being the prime purpose behind its functionality it is also suitable for the small, optimized domains – the specific language for coding data.
Features of Rebol:
Hierarchical graphical compositing
Visual interface dialect (VID)
Graphical effects and image processing operations
Multiple window support
Flexible event system
Standard image formats
Animation and timing
Launch and browse functions
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