What Were the Best Developer Reads of 2020

What were the best developer reads of 2020

By Ondrej PolesnyDec 21, 2020

We all had a bit of a sad year in 2020. However, there are some silver linings. The home-office situation allowed many of us to spend more time learning and trying new technologies. Here on our blog, technical articles have seen a great increase in traffic, so let’s look at the most-read articles and why they interested so many developers. 

Why did Jamstack gain popularity?

We, developers, try to write code in a readable and easy-to-understand fashion. We know when we come back to a project after a few months, we’re starting over. Jamstack encourages us to decouple content from the presentation layer and business logic. It’s also what makes the code much simpler and what lowers the entry barrier for beginners. Jamstack opened the industry to people who don’t speak code yet. 

Look at Hugo or Eleventy. They are so welcoming to beginners. Take a look at an article written by a colleague of mine, Mike Berry, where he describes how his struggles with JSX and React led him to Hugo:

Javascript-based vs. other SSGs

But if you look at the Jamstack Survey done by Netlify, you see people are more often using JavaScript-based static site generators. The reason is they offer more features. Most of them enrich Jamstack sites with client bundles that help with the visitor browsing experience. They allow browsers to preload images, load page data from service workers allowing static sites to run offline, or animate transitions between pages.

But many of us already have experience with React, Vue, or Angular, so it’s easier to start with some technology you’re familiar with. There are many formal comparison-type articles, but none that would offer a real developer experience with using the platforms and their tools. That’s why I wrote two articles comparing the leading JavaScript-based static site generators and offered my opinion:

Shortly after I published them, we’ve seen Vue 3 release and some neat updates in Nuxt. They’ve introduced new ways of configuring the website output as SPA, server-side, or static site. Martin Makarsky explains it all in his article:

Improving content editing experience

While the static site generators fight for our attention, the further progress of Jamstack in web development is not just about us, developers, anymore. After all, people visit websites for content, not for looking at source code. Kontent has always been focused on providing a great editing experience for content editors. Its features such as workflows, contextual comments and suggestions, editorial calendars, and others speak for themselves. This year, we’ve seen other headless CMSs such as Contentful and Contentstack shift their focus and invest in making content editors happy.

But how to make editors happy with static sites?

This year, we showed the whole industry that it’s possible to have live site editing within the headless CMS UI and still enjoy all the Jamstack benefits. Dive into the following article written by Corey Hamilton:

What’s next?

Those were the five most-read developer articles on our blog this year. In the near future, we’ll be blogging about Angular and Scully, Gatsby file system routes API, static site generator for .NET core, and many other topics. If that sounds interesting, make sure to sign up for our newsletter below and bookmark the blog (CTRL+D 😊).

It wasn’t easy to get through 2020, and we really hope you and your loved ones stayed safe and healthy. From the DevRel team at Kontent, we wish you a very Merry Christmas, no downtime during your well deserved holiday, and as you’re probably coding the whole time, let Covid avoid both you and your code.

And the recipe for a good winter evening? Your favorite chair near the fireplace, hot tea, and one of the above-mentioned articles 🎅.

Written by
Ondrej Polesny

As Developer Evangelist, I specialize in the impossible. When something is too complicated, requires too much effort, or is just simply not possible, just give me a few days and we will see :).

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