Continuing with our series of the different types of computer programmers out there, we will be discussing what a web programmer does. They often work closely with web designers who are mostly responsible for making websites look aesthetically pleasing and easy to use, depending on the audience. Simply put, web programmers are responsible for how the website works.
When web apps are built for different platforms, it is up to web programmers to make sure that the launch of the application goes smoothly. An example of a website launch gone awry at launch time would be healthcare.gov. When the site was launched last year, the site did not work as it had been advertised for many people, becoming an embarrassment for the federal government. The website was rushed in order to meet a specific deadline. Launching websites takes a lot of time and a team of people to make sure that the website meets all of the criteria set form by the team or company and works properly as a version 1.0. Websites can always be updated later, but the first version of the website has to be stable and working for as many users as possible, unless companies are interested in having another failure like the health care website.
Web programmers are responsible for updating websites with new apps and features in order to keep up with changes in the business landscape. Web programmers have to query users to gain insight on additional application requirements for web apps. This way, they can figure out what specifications they need in order to build apps that will work with what software and hardware people are using. For example, recently, Google had made it a requirement if people wanted a YouTube account, it would be directly connected to Google+. This was a huge change to the website and the way people login and manage their channels on YouTube, and there were problems, but in the end, it has been working and updated with bug fixes to keep it running smoothly, which is another responsibility for web programmers.
Imagine if high traffic websites, like Facebook, Google, and YouTube, were not kept up and never updated. They would fail immensely and never amount to anything. People would leave and go someplace else that is properly maintained. Web programmers need to maintain websites to make sure they are functioning well. Coding is very difficult, and ideas on paper may not work in the real world, so programmers have to go back into the code, debug it, test it, and continue this process until they are able to make stable changes to websites. This is also why when you see major updates for websites, they are few and far between. Smaller updates take less time and are meant for maintenance.
Web programmers can make between $40,000 – $80,000 per year, depending on experience and level of work. Some can make much more than that, depending on who they work for and what they are doing. Salaries are expected to go up in the future, so learning how to code now and programming websites are good strategies to start a new life in a new career.
Now that we talked about web designers and web programmers, we can talk about the different jobs of web programmers, differentiated in two categories: front-end and back-end. Stay tuned to the blog for that information!
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