Top Skills Developers Should Master in 2020

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If you want to become a successful developer, you have to learn more than writing code to become successful.

In this article, we’ll look at some technical skills that you need to become a successful developer.


JavaScript is the language of the web. It powers all web front ends and it’s increasingly used more for back end and system developer with Node.js

The language has been getting better in the last few years with modern features like modules added.

Also, there’re lots of syntactic sugar like the class syntax to hide any confusion from prototypes. The destructuring syntax lets us assign properties from objects and arrays to variables directly.

The spread operator is good for merging and copying objects. Arrow functions get rid of any confusion with this .

And let and const lets us define variables and constants that are confined within a block.

Those are all great feature that makes JavaScript development or enjoyable than ever.

Also, there’re great front end frameworks and libraries like React, Angular and Vue that make front end development even easier.

It’s also the language for making HTML5 games. It can be used with Unity as its scripting language, for example.

NPM hosts lots of useful libraries that we can install easily, and it’s a great package management system for most JavaScript apps.

Big Data

Most web apps host data. And so we need to be able to work with data so that we can make them useful for us and for our users.

Data is collected everywhere and they need to be analyzed so that we can make our decisions from them.

With the Internet, data is aggregated from anywhere. Being able to use them to make decisions is a great benefit as long as it respects people’s privacy.

We can analyze all the collected data with scripts written in Python or R, or build a full-fledged app to host apps.

Full Stack Development

Full-stack development is where we develop both the front end and back end. A bit of knowledge on both is good since they’re too tied together.

Most apps need the back end, and if we work on the back end and front end, we can build full features ourselves without waiting for other people.

Getting results faster definitely makes us an asset to other people or companies.

Back end frameworks and SQL are great to learn since they’re used together often to build apps. Frameworks like Spring, Django, and Rails are used a lot by companies and individuals to build apps.

So basic knowledge of them are useful.

On the front end, JavaScript rules and as we saw in the previous section. JavaScript has a great ecosystem and has improved a lot in the last few years.

So it’s ready for big apps.

Furthermore, JavaScript can also be used on the back end with great frameworks like NestJs, Express, Koa, and more.

It’s great for building back end apps as well.


Sooner or later, we’ll have to put apps into production and this is where DevOps comes in.

We can deploy things and manage them ourselves if we know some DevOps.

Some AWS knowledge is helpful, and also Docker knowledge is also very useful. Docker lets us run apps in their own isolated environment so that we don’t have to worry about what we have in the host environment.

Also, we don’t have to worry about conflicting dependencies or differences in the runtime environment for each app.

Everything is done in an automated manner. Once we wrote scripts to automated our builds, we can take a break. That’s another great thing about knowing some DevOps skills.


Developers should learn about all that they can learn if the skills are popular. They include JavaScript since it’s the language for front end and also for many other kinds of apps.

Also, we should learn the full stack if we want to be useful to more people. It’s better than learning just one part of the stack since it’s hard to implement features ourselves if we only do part of it.

Finally, we should learn how to wrangle data so that we can use whatever data is collected to make better decisions.

By John Au-Yeung

Web developer specializing in React, Vue, and front end development.

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