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Node.js plays in the big leagues thanks to them

Gabriela Motroc

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Some people still see Node.js as a rookie, but this platform has managed to sneak into the code stacks of tech giants and Fortune 500 companies. It’s safe to say that Node.js is playing in the big leagues thanks to giants such as Microsoft, LinkedIn, Netflix, PayPal and a plethora of others.

Groupon engineer Adam Geitgey announced in a 2013 blog post that the company was migrating its U.S. web traffic from a monolithic Ruby on rails application to Node.js. Although Groupon’s entire U.S. web frontend codebase has been a single Rails codebase from the very beginning, they decided to re-architect the frontend by splitting it into small pieces as it grew larger. They also rebuilt each major section of the website as an independent Node.js application. The migration allowed the development teams to develop and ship features faster and with fewer dependencies on other teams.

Lessons learned from the likes of eBay, LinkedIn, Netflix and PayPal

eBay’s principal web engineer Senthil Padmanabhan explained in a blog post that the company has always been open to new technologies, “and Node.js has been topping the list of candidates for quite some time.” Some eBay engineers concluded that Java did not seem to fit the project requirements, so they began exploring the world of Node.js. Their idea was to build a bare minimum boilerplate Node.js server that scales; once the application reached a stable point, they had to move form a developer instance to a staging environment and so they started looking into deployment of the Node.js stack. According to Padmanabhan, eBay’s  platform team is now developing a full-fledged frontend stack running on Node.js.

SEE ALSO: Top reasons to use Node.js for web application development

PayPal’s ode to Node.js also occurred in 2013. Jeff Harrell, senior director of payments product and engineering at PayPal, wrote that Node.js unified the company’s engineering specialties into one team which allowed them to understand and react to the users’ needs at any level in the technology stack. Two of the five engineers working on the Java application started working on the parallel Node.js app. Because the Node.js app was built almost twice as fast with fewer people, was written in 33 percent fewer lines of code and was constructed with 40 percent fewer files, PayPal decided to put the Java app on hold while they doubled down on the JavaScript one.  Harrell explained that even the Java engineers were happy with the decision.

The great news is that the Java engineers on the project, unsure about Node.js in the beginning, delightfully moved over to Node.js and are happily committing to a parallel work stream, providing us with double the productivity we were originally seeing.

One of the reasons why high-profile companies have migrated to Node.js is that it enables them to outperform their competitors by delivering new services and features faster.
Gabriela Motroc
Gabriela Motroc was editor of and JAX Magazine. Before working at Software & Support Media Group, she studied International Communication Management at the Hague University of Applied Sciences.

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