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Another significant trend is the movement toward using JavaScript as a primary programming language.
AJAX first showed us that JavaScript is important; jQuery showed us that it could be powerful and
elegant; and Google’s open source V8 JavaScript engine showed us that it could be incredibly fast. Today,
JavaScript is becoming a serious server-side programming language. It serves as the data storage and
querying language for several nonrelational databases, including CouchDB and Mongo, and it’s used as
a general-purpose language in server-side platforms such as Node.js.
Node.js has been around since 2009 and gained wide acceptance very quickly. Architecturally, it’s
similar to Sinatra, in that it doesn’t apply the MVC pattern. It is a more low-level way of connecting
HTTP requests to your code. Its key innovations are as follows:

  • Using JavaScript: Developers need to work only in a single language, from clientside code, through server-side logic, and even into data-querying logic via CouchDB or the like.
  • Being completely asynchronous: Node.js’s API simply doesn’t expose any way of blocking a thread while waiting for input/output (I/O) or any other operation. All I/O is implemented by beginning the operation and then later receiving a callback when the I/O is completed. This means that Node.js makes extremely efficient use of system resources and may handle tens of thousands of concurrent requests per CPU (alternative platforms tend to be limited to about 100 concurrent requests per CPU).

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