Tag Archives: JavaScript

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Zero Effort Angular App with a Database, RESTful API & Security

Posted by on May 26, 2015

Recently, we at Back& released a tutorial on the Backand Github page that shows off a lot of the features available by default in a Backand-powered application. After completing the tutorial, you’ll have a simple ToDo list application with full support for user and role-based security. Below we’ll discuss each of the features demonstrated in the tutorial, and cover any items remaining that are necessary for a full deployment.

RESTful API Out-of-the-Box

One of the first things we do in the tutorial, after actually creating the application with Backand, is create a new database using our JSON-based schema language. This powerful tool allows you to quickly build a database and the associated tables and objects without having a client installed. More importantly, once the database has been created, Backand automatically creates a RESTful API based on your underlying database schema. This allows you to have immediate access to your database via a series of REST API calls that create, retrieve, update, and delete records at whim. With some simple JavaScript, you can quickly build out a data layer that would take months in a stand-alone project! Furthermore, the moment you make a change to your schema, Backand will detect the change and update the API endpoints accordingly. This automated updating greatly eases the process of migrating database schema changes, and takes some of the load of server programming off your shoulders, allowing you to focus on your application’s functionality.
Security Roles

While the RESTful API is indeed a powerful tool, the main goal of this tutorial is to explore user- and role-based security. Through Backand’s dashboard you are granted a powerful array of tools that you can leverage to secure your underlying application. You can assign user-specific security settings for each object in your app, including everything from table update calls to custom triggers and actions.

However, doing this for every user that signs up for your application would be incredibly tedious. Luckily, Backand provides User Roles that you can assign to the users in your application. Roles set a basic template for interacting with your application’s API, allowing you to restrict all users with that role to only specific actions in your application. These roles can also be overridden at an endpoint level, allowing you to grant roles specific access to resources while still maintaining their general security profile.

After the tutorial has been completed, you will have three roles for your users – administrators who have full control, users who can view all records in the application (but only update or delete those that they create themselves), and read-only users that are only able to view the ToDo items in your application.

Login and Anonymous Access

In addition to security roles, this tutorial will introduce you to the user access functionality available in Backand. You’ll implement a mechanism for inviting users to register for your application, and enable two-step verification for your application’s users, and all of the complexity will be managed by Backand! Furthermore, you’ll learn how to enable anonymous access to your application through a few simple administrative dashboard settings. After the tutorial has been completed, you will have a fully secure application that allows you to invite users to the system, automatically assign them a security role, and even enable anonymous access to your ToDo list should you wish to do so.

Remaining Items

While the tutorial will walk you through the entire application – from inception to completion – there will still be a few tasks remaining before you can show off your new Backand-powered ToDo list app. The first section of the tutorial focuses on setting up a local application development environment, which allows you to develop and run the code on your local machine. However, once you’ve implemented the code and are ready to show it off, you still need to track down a web server to use for deployment. Luckily this web server does not need to be particularly robust, as your application requires zero server-side customization – simply deploy the application code to a publicly-accessible folder and you are set!

Once you’ve published your application on a web server, you have a few more steps remaining in order to fully deploy the application. As a part of the tutorial you set several internal sign-up and authentication URLs that point at your local development instance. Obviously these will no longer function once you have deployed the code! Simply change the appropriate user security settings in your application’s Backand dashboard, and your application will be ready to show the world!

Conclusion

This tutorial gives you a quick look at the power offered by Backand’s back end tools and APIs. You’ll explore creating a database and implementing a RESTful API for that data with zero effort. You’ll customize your application’s security and learn how to restrict users based on role and based on endpoint. You’ll even spend some time working with custom server-side actions that execute on-demand. By the time you have finished the tutorial, you will have implemented a secure ToDo list application with user authentication – and all with minimal effort!

Click here to start the Backand ToDo tutorial. And be sure to sign up for free and start creating your app today.

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The PROs of AngularJS

Posted by on May 05, 2015

Overview

Building off our infographic on the pros and cons of developing in AngularJS, we felt that some of the points we made deserved a bit of a deeper explanation. In this article we’ll look at the pros of Angular development. We’ll cover the major benefits of working in Angular, diving a bit deeper into the aspects of the framework that may not be immediately obvious.

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Another Hybrid Framework Battle Begins – Ionic vs Kendo

Posted by on Apr 30, 2015

Overview

In the web development world, there are a number of different frameworks used to varying degrees by developers looking to save time in their application development efforts. These include frameworks like AngularJS, ReactJS, and even just plain JQuery. This division of frameworks has bled into the mobile realm, as JavaScript UI frameworks for mobile development have evolved into robust suites of functionality that make mobile app development quick and relatively painless. Below we’ll look at two different mobile UI frameworks: Kendo and Ionic. We’ll take a look at the ideas underpinning each one, and examine situations in which one or the other will serve best.

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A Hint of What’s to Come: AngularJS 2.0

Posted by on Mar 23, 2015

Over the past several months, a lot has been written about the forthcoming changes in AngularJS 2.0. While not much is available in the way of details, there are some changes that have been released by the Angular 2.0 team that have raised a lot of concerns among seasoned AngularJS developers. In this article we’ll take a brief look at what is changing, how it impacts your application, and anything to keep in mind when making the transition from Angular 1.X.

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For Which Web Apps Is AngularJS Best Suited?

Posted by on Mar 10, 2015

With web application development being such a wide problem domain, it can often be hard to tell which types of applications are best served by which JavaScript framework. AngularJS is no different in this regard. While it can be used in any type of application, there are a number of situations in which the power of AngularJS really shines. Below we’ll look at a few different types of web applications to which AngularJS is well-suited.

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AngularJS vs. Backbone.js

Posted by on Mar 03, 2015

So far in our series on front-end JavaScript frameworks we have looked at ReactJS and EmberJS. In this final article we’ll take a look at Backbone. We’ll examine how it compares to AngularJS on both an implementation and an ideological level, and provide some observations on how it compares in various problem domains in web application development.

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AngularJS vs. EmberJS

Posted by on Feb 25, 2015

In our last article, we compared AngularJS to React and looked at some of the elements that differentiated the two frameworks. In this article we’ll take a look at EmberJS, a framework that aims to do “all the heavy lifting” in web development. Below we’ll look briefly at its history, its usage, and we’ll compare it to AngularJS in terms of features and functionality.

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React vs. Angular

Posted by on Feb 17, 2015

Lately, web development has been changing very quickly. Seemingly every month a new JavaScript framework is being introduced, and understanding what each has to offer can be challenging. We here at Back& decided to try and help sort this out. In this short series we will look at a few front-end JavaScript frameworks, and see how they compare with AngularJS. We’ll give a brief history of each, and touch on a few functional areas for comparison. In this article we’ll take a look at React, and see how it measures up to Angular for web development.

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Are Frontends Getting Smarter?

Posted by on Jan 13, 2015

Traditional web development wisdom holds that a firm separation should be maintained between the frontend display code and backend server code. However, this often increases the costs needed to deploy and maintain a web application. As usage of the application increases, the server side processing quickly becomes a bottleneck with each request taking up additional limited resources. There are multiple standard solutions to this, but typically they involve an increase in server hardware – along with associated costs.

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Are Enterprises Migrating to AngularJS?

Posted by on Dec 18, 2014

As AngularJS continues to gain traction in the web development world, many organizations are starting to look at the client-side framework as a legitimate option for new projects that represent something other than greenfield development. As many organizations seek to replace aging or inefficient internal processes, AngularJS is starting to see more widespread adoption for the replacement of enterprise applications. Below are a few examples of how AngularJS is being used in enterprise development and some of the results being seen.

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