2018 JavaScript Rising Stars

After 2016 and 2017, welcome to the third edition of the JavaScript Rising Stars!

It's time to look back at the JavaScript landscape in 2018.

Let's see by the numbers which projects got traction in 2018 by comparing the numbers of stars added on GitHub over the last 12 months, and find out who are 2018's JavaScript Rising Stars.



The following graphs compare the number of stars added on Github over the last 12 months. We analyzed projects coming from Best of JavaScript, a curated list of the best projects related to the web platform. Note that you can click on a project to get more info.

Most Popular Projects Overall

1
Vue.js

Vue.js

πŸ–– Vue.js is a progressive, incrementally-adoptable JavaScript framework for building UI on the web.
+45.3kβ˜†
3.9k
2.9k
3.9k
3.7k
3.3k
9.7k
3.6k
3.3k
2.7k
2.5k
3.0k
2.8k
J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D
2
React

React

A declarative, efficient, and flexible JavaScript library for building user interfaces.
+34.2kβ˜†
2.7k
2.1k
2.9k
2.5k
2.4k
7.9k
2.6k
2.4k
2.2k
2.2k
2.3k
2.0k
J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D
3
VS Code

VS Code

Visual Studio Code
+25.2kβ˜†
2.0k
1.8k
2.0k
1.8k
2.3k
3.1k
1.9k
2.2k
2.3k
2.5k
1.8k
1.6k
J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D
4
Deno

Deno

A secure TypeScript runtime on V8
+21.6kβ˜†
14.8k
1.9k
1.4k
835
908
817
1.0k
J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D
5
Puppeteer

Puppeteer

Headless Chrome Node API
+21.4kβ˜†
3.4k
2.0k
2.1k
1.6k
1.7k
1.5k
1.5k
1.7k
1.4k
1.5k
1.4k
1.6k
J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D
6
Create React App

Create React App

Set up a modern web app by running one command.
+21.2kβ˜†
2.3k
1.7k
2.0k
1.8k
1.8k
1.6k
1.7k
1.5k
1.8k
2.1k
1.4k
1.4k
J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D
7
Axios

Axios

Promise based HTTP client for the browser and node.js
+19.9kβ˜†
2.1k
1.6k
2.0k
1.8k
1.8k
1.6k
1.7k
1.7k
1.5k
1.4k
1.4k
1.3k
J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D
8
Ant Design

Ant Design

🐜 A UI Design Language
+18.5kβ˜†
1.9k
1.0k
1.6k
1.3k
1.4k
1.2k
1.3k
1.3k
1.3k
1.0k
1.2k
4.0k
J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D
9
Vue Element Admin

Vue Element Admin

A magical vue admin
+17.3kβ˜†
1.1k
696
1.4k
1.3k
1.6k
1.6k
1.8k
1.6k
1.7k
1.4k
1.5k
1.6k
J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D
10
Storybook

Storybook

Interactive UI component dev & test: React, React Native, Vue, Angular, Ember
+15.1kβ˜†
2.2k
1.1k
1.3k
1.2k
1.2k
982
1.2k
1.3k
1.2k
1.3k
1.2k
909
J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D

These are the hottest projects of the year, all categories included.

For the third time in a row, Vue.js is the trendiest project of the year.

It got 45k stars overs the last 12 months, it's 5,000 more stars than in 2017... the momentum is still there!

At position number 4, Deno is the only new project among the TOP 10.

Deno is "a program for executing JavaScript and TypeScript outside of the web browser."

According to its creator Ryan Dahl (the father of Node.js), this secure TypeScript runtime is an attempt of addressing several issues about Node.js. Watch his video presentation.

Front-end Frameworks

1
Vue.js

Vue.js

πŸ–– Vue.js is a progressive, incrementally-adoptable JavaScript framework for building UI on the web.
+45.3kβ˜†
3.9k
2.9k
3.9k
3.7k
3.3k
9.7k
3.6k
3.3k
2.7k
2.5k
3.0k
2.8k
J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D
2
React

React

A declarative, efficient, and flexible JavaScript library for building user interfaces.
+34.2kβ˜†
2.7k
2.1k
2.9k
2.5k
2.4k
7.9k
2.6k
2.4k
2.2k
2.2k
2.3k
2.0k
J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D
3
Angular

Angular

One framework. Mobile & desktop.
+12.4kβ˜†
1.1k
968
1.0k
1.1k
1.0k
1.1k
1.2k
1.1k
1.0k
1.1k
964
766
J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D
4
Hyperapp

Hyperapp

1 kB JavaScript micro-framework for building declarative web applications
+7.6kβ˜†
2.3k
877
488
243
1.6k
491
621
309
192
185
209
134
J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D
5
Omi

Omi

Next generation web framework using web components with omio fallback(IE8+) in tiny js.
+5.1kβ˜†
24
35
28
23
96
3.1k
1.1k
691
J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D

In the battlefield of the front-end framework category, the 3 dominant actors were the same than in 2017: Vue.js, React and Angular.

If you check the graph, you may notice a peak of stars in June for both Vue.js and React. The reason? It was the time Vue.js passed React in terms of total number of stars, becoming the most popular project in the UI frameworks category. At that time, fans from both sides did their best to push their champion!

The newcomer in 2018 is Omi, a very promising UI framework that takes advantage of the Shadow DOM technology, while using the "JSX" syntax, familiar to React developers.

Node.js Frameworks

1
Next.js

Next.js

The React Framework
+12.6kβ˜†
1.5k
964
992
918
1.0k
914
939
908
1.3k
1.2k
961
1.0k
J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D
2
Nuxt

Nuxt

The Vue.js Developers Framework
+8.7kβ˜†
1.1k
688
860
858
708
605
578
629
716
787
603
602
J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D
3
Nest

Nest

A progressive Node.js framework for building efficient and scalable server-side applications on top
+8.4kβ˜†
583
826
615
462
785
579
651
708
862
668
742
882
J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D
4
Express

Express

Fast, unopinionated, minimalist web framework for node.
+5.8kβ˜†
548
483
564
602
510
463
446
483
434
425
493
398
J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D
5
Koa

Koa

Expressive middleware for node.js using ES2017 async functions
+5.5kβ˜†
526
382
578
527
506
438
468
448
476
385
371
373
J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D

The 2 leading Node.js frameworks in 2018 are "full-stack frameworks" related to a specific front-end framework:

They both provide a great developer experience to set up Single-Page Applications, while providing Server-Side Rendering features.

At position number 4 Express, the number one in 2017, stays very popular, despite its age.

React Ecosystem

1
Create React App

Create React App

Set up a modern web app by running one command.
+21.2kβ˜†
2.3k
1.7k
2.0k
1.8k
1.8k
1.6k
1.7k
1.5k
1.8k
2.1k
1.4k
1.4k
J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D
2
Ant Design

Ant Design

🐜 A UI Design Language
+18.5kβ˜†
1.9k
1.0k
1.6k
1.3k
1.4k
1.2k
1.3k
1.3k
1.3k
1.0k
1.2k
4.0k
J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D
3
Gatsby

Gatsby

Build blazing fast, modern apps and websites with React
+13.0kβ˜†
1.7k
960
1.1k
928
831
875
1.0k
1.1k
1.1k
1.1k
946
1.3k
J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D
4
Next.js

Next.js

The React Framework
+12.6kβ˜†
1.5k
964
992
918
1.0k
914
939
908
1.3k
1.2k
961
1.0k
J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D
5
Material UI

Material UI

React components that implement Google's Material Design.
+11.4kβ˜†
993
769
974
860
1.9k
931
846
869
864
879
757
783
J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D

No surprise in the React eco-system category, the project number one in 2018 is Create React App, the de-facto tool to start a new React application.

The version 2 was released in 2018, it was a major upgrade that includes the version 4 of Webpack and the possibility to use TypeScript.

About the React library itself, the introduction of hooks is a major addition, that may change a lot of things about the way we deal with state management and side effects with React.

Vue Ecosystem

1
Vue Element Admin

Vue Element Admin

A magical vue admin
+17.3kβ˜†
1.1k
696
1.4k
1.3k
1.6k
1.6k
1.8k
1.6k
1.7k
1.4k
1.5k
1.6k
J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D
2
Element

Element

A Vue.js 2.0 UI Toolkit for Web
+12.4kβ˜†
1.4k
838
1.2k
1.1k
1.2k
1.1k
1.1k
996
993
795
882
872
J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D
3
VuePress

VuePress

πŸ“ Minimalistic Vue-powered static site generator
+10.4kβ˜†
6.0k
1.2k
532
443
564
473
320
424
425
J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D
4
vue-cli

vue-cli

πŸ› οΈ Standard Tooling for Vue.js Development
+9.8kβ˜†
591
694
956
865
1.1k
1.1k
847
1.1k
722
518
653
645
J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D
5
Nuxt

Nuxt

The Vue.js Developers Framework
+8.7kβ˜†
1.1k
688
860
858
708
605
578
629
716
787
603
602
J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D

Vue.js momentum is still growing, the version 3 should take advantage of modern browsers abilities to make it even faster and easier to use.

Vue Element Admin, the most popular project of the Vue.js ecosystem, is a solution to build beautiful dashboards using Vue.js components.

vue-cli is the standard solution to build a new Vue.js application, using the modern JavaScript tooling.

It can be compared to Create React App for React but it's more flexible and it provides a Graphical User Interface that makes it very user-friendly.

Angular Ecosystem

1
Angular CLI

Angular CLI

CLI tool for Angular
+5.9kβ˜†
658
658
645
596
698
235
778
414
353
393
298
221
J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D
2
ngx-admin

ngx-admin

Admin dashboard template based on Angular 7+, Bootstrap 4 (previously known as ng2-admin)
+4.8kβ˜†
214
388
486
480
408
419
421
382
365
412
466
400
J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D
3
Material Design for Angular

Material Design for Angular

Material Design components for Angular
+4.3kβ˜†
403
350
394
427
426
385
324
342
299
422
286
255
J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D
4
NgRx

NgRx

Reactive libraries for Angular
+2.5kβ˜†
248
237
270
213
501
68
265
140
176
177
158
J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D
5
NG-ZORRO

NG-ZORRO

An enterprise-class UI components based on Ant Design and Angular 7. 🐜
+2.2kβ˜†
214
94
197
204
201
236
210
168
146
150
161
190
J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D

Not one but two major upgrades in the Angular ecosystem in 2018!

Angular version 6, introduced in May, provides a lot of features related to the tooling.

As a consequence, the trendiest project of the Angular ecosystem was Angular CLI the official command line tool used to scaffold new projects and manage existing projects.

Among the new features, the update command makes it easy to update an application and its dependencies. Also, it's now possible to customize the underlying Webpack configuration without "ejecting".

Angular version 7 was announced in October.

It includes Angular CLI prompts, an upgrade of Material Design for Angular, and focuses on performance improvements, with a feature called "Virtual Scrolling".

Mobile

1
React Native

React Native

A framework for building native apps with React.
+14.6kβ˜†
1.3k
1.3k
1.5k
1.3k
1.2k
1.4k
1.2k
1.1k
1.1k
1.1k
1.1k
921
J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D
2
Weex

Weex

A framework for building Mobile cross-platform UI.
+4.4kβ˜†
669
401
521
452
459
366
283
252
215
215
302
228
J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D
3
NativeScript

NativeScript

NativeScript is an open source framework for building truly native mobile apps with JavaScript. Use
+3.8kβ˜†
262
333
363
386
320
299
288
308
302
352
304
249
J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D
4
Quasar

Quasar

Quasar Framework
+3.6kβ˜†
398
295
342
248
340
386
337
306
268
244
183
257
J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D
5
Ionic

Ionic

Build amazing native and progressive web apps with open web technologies. One app running on everyth
+3.5kβ˜†
335
294
325
282
340
206
265
353
246
271
299
266
J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D

React Native is still the leading solution to create mobile applications using the JavaScript language.

Airbnb recently published a thorough series of article explaining why they decided to drop React Native for their next products in favor of Native Apps.

For people who want to use Vue.js instead of React, there are several choices.

The 4 following projects of the category (Weex, NativeScript, Quasar and Ionic) all support Vue.js as the view layer to build mobile applications.

It's not a JavaScript project because it uses the Dart language but Flutter from Google is a great alternative to build cross-environment mobile applications.

Compilers

1
TypeScript

TypeScript

TypeScript is a superset of JavaScript that compiles to clean JavaScript output.
+13.6kβ˜†
1.1k
940
1.1k
1.0k
1.0k
1.5k
1.2k
1.1k
1.1k
1.3k
997
1.2k
J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D
2
Babel

Babel

🐠 Babel is a compiler for writing next generation JavaScript.
+6.3kβ˜†
646
526
660
561
483
474
414
635
502
438
445
487
J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D
3
Flow

Flow

Adds static typing to JavaScript to improve developer productivity and code quality.
+3.8kβ˜†
391
344
393
333
333
350
318
313
318
254
253
210
J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D
4
Reason

Reason

Simple, fast & type safe code that leverages the JavaScript & OCaml ecosystems
+2.8kβ˜†
619
286
200
150
243
208
137
165
149
192
279
133
J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D
5
Purescript

Purescript

A strongly-typed language that compiles to Javascript
+1.0kβ˜†
93
66
127
94
85
53
127
101
80
77
76
59
J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D

There were discussions in the past about the best way to introduce static typing to JavaScript.

In 2018, it seems that TypeScript, from Microsoft took a big advantage over its arch-rival Flow, from Facebook.

The fact that the latest version of Babel supports TypeScript was a game changer. As of NO slug create-react-app 2.1 and later, TypeScript works out of the box in a React application.

TypeScript is almost a standard for development: whether it's back-end or front-end development, we see more and more libraries that include TypeScript definitions. And if types are not provided by the library itself, the project DefinitelyTyped provides types for thousands of JavaScript projects.

Build Tools

1
Parcel

Parcel

πŸ“¦πŸš€ Blazing fast, zero configuration web application bundler
+14.9kβ˜†
4.4k
1.5k
1.2k
933
766
1.2k
1.5k
865
673
767
619
543
J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D
2
Webpack

Webpack

A bundler for javascript and friends. Packs many modules into a few bundled assets. Code Splitting a
+10.7kβ˜†
1.2k
1.4k
1.3k
1.1k
910
799
738
803
670
593
605
618
J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D
3
Rollup

Rollup

Next-generation ES module bundler
+3.2kβ˜†
374
228
292
279
303
271
241
257
162
231
248
270
J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D
4
Gulp

Gulp

The streaming build system
+2.5kβ˜†
350
216
231
248
251
192
216
214
168
141
103
139
J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D
5
Poi

Poi

A zero-config bundler for JavaScript applications.
+1.3kβ˜†
240
156
149
114
100
117
104
66
32
56
60
123
J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D

Parcel confirms its success of 2017, developers love the ability of setting up a new web project without any configuration.

Webpack is still the most popular and flexible build tool, Create React App, vue-cli and Angular CLI all use it under the hood. The version 4 includes performance improvements (about both build times and bundle sizes) and "sensible defaults" that make possible to use Webpack with zero configuration.

Testing Frameworks

1
Jest

Jest

Delightful JavaScript Testing.
+8.1kβ˜†
888
642
672
584
674
711
764
689
626
603
663
542
J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D
2
AVA

AVA

πŸš€ Testing can be a drag. AVA helps you get it done.
+3.1kβ˜†
454
282
338
247
230
252
201
231
205
173
212
250
J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D
3
Mocha

Mocha

β˜•οΈ simple, flexible, fun javascript test framework for node.js & the browser
+2.6kβ˜†
275
225
263
252
240
204
231
187
172
218
181
171
J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D
4
Jasmine

Jasmine

Simple JavaScript testing framework for browsers and node.js
+911β˜†
77
72
88
84
90
74
76
80
76
71
79
44
J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D
5
Tape

Tape

tap-producing test harness for node and browsers
+533β˜†
84
52
58
64
36
36
36
40
30
31
38
28
J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D

No change in the testing framework landscape in 2018, the 5 leading solutions are the same as in 2017, in the same order.

Jest increased its advance over its contenders, developers appreciate the efforts made by Facebook to provide a full-featured testing framework that can be used to test both front-end (it was intended to test React components, in the beginning) and back-end code, without requiring configuration.

IDEs & Editors

1
VS Code

VS Code

Visual Studio Code
+25.2kβ˜†
2.0k
1.8k
2.0k
1.8k
2.3k
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2
Atom

Atom

The hackable text editor
+4.9kβ˜†
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416
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3
Theia

Theia

Theia is a cloud & desktop IDE framework implemented in TypeScript.
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4
Reactide

Reactide

Reactide is the first dedicated IDE for React web application development. http://reactide.io
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50
85
47
35
50
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5
Brackets

Brackets

An open source code editor for the web, written in JavaScript, HTML and CSS.
+951β˜†
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52
20
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VS Code, the 3rd trendiest project overall, is almost the de-facto IDE for web development.

It stands up with its auto-completion features and its TypeScript integration.

The killer feature may be the debugging abilities for Node.js.

CSS in JavaScript

1
Styled Components

Styled Components

Visual primitives for the component age. Use the best bits of ES6 and CSS to style your apps without
+8.9kβ˜†
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2
Emotion

Emotion

CSS-in-JS library designed for high performance style composition
+3.9kβ˜†
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417
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294
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3
CSS Modules

CSS Modules

Documentation about css-modules
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Linaria

Linaria

Zero-runtime CSS in JS library
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18
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27
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5
Polished

Polished

A lightweight toolset for writing styles in JavaScript ✨
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There is still no consensus about the best way to style modern web applications, made of components (whether it's React, Vue.js or Angular).

But Styled Components has still the best momentum and seems to be the most popular "component-based styling" solution.

Static Sites

1
Gatsby

Gatsby

Build blazing fast, modern apps and websites with React
+13.0kβ˜†
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960
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2
Next.js

Next.js

The React Framework
+12.6kβ˜†
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3
VuePress

VuePress

πŸ“ Minimalistic Vue-powered static site generator
+10.4kβ˜†
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1.2k
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4
Nuxt

Nuxt

The Vue.js Developers Framework
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5
Hexo

Hexo

A fast, simple & powerful blog framework, powered by Node.js.
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Like in 2017, Gatsby was the most popular Static Site Generator (a tool to generate a bunch of HTML JavaScript and CSS files that can be hosted anywhere to serve ultra-fast web sites) in 2018.

Gatsby shines with its versatility (you get the best of Single Page Applications and static web sites) and the focus on performance.

If you want to use Vue.js instead of React, VuePress or Nuxt, at position number 3 and 4, may be the right choice.

GraphQL

1
Gatsby

Gatsby

Build blazing fast, modern apps and websites with React
+13.0kβ˜†
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960
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831
875
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2
Prisma

Prisma

⚑️ Prisma enables seamless type-safe database access & declarative data modeling
+8.0kβ˜†
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3
Apollo client

Apollo client

A fully-featured, production ready caching GraphQL client for every UI framework and GraphQ
+4.2kβ˜†
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384
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369
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4
GraphQL

GraphQL

GraphQL is a query language and execution engine tied to any backend service.
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309
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258
300
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249
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5
Apollo Server

Apollo Server

🌍 GraphQL server for Express, Connect, Hapi, Koa and more
+3.2kβ˜†
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The GraphQL ecosystem is picking up speed, and a big trend is the appearance of tools that simplify part of the process of setting up a GraphQL endpoint.

Gatsby is still number one, and it's definitely one of the tools that make getting started with GraphQL the most approachable.

Graphcool evolved into Prisma at number two, while Hasura GraphQL Engine also helps you generate a working back-end straight from your database.

And the rest of the top 15 is filled out by GraphQL servers, clients, and various other utilities such as GraphQL Playground.

Learning Resource

1
JS Algorithms & Data Structures

JS Algorithms & Data Structures

πŸ“ Algorithms and data structures implemented in JavaScript with explanations and links to further r
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30 seconds of code

30 seconds of code

Curated collection of useful JavaScript snippets that you can understand in 30 seconds or less.
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You Don't Know JS

You Don't Know JS

A book series on JavaScript. @YDKJS on twitter.
+21.0kβ˜†
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Airbnb Style Guide

Airbnb Style Guide

JavaScript Style Guide
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Node.js Best Practices

Node.js Best Practices

The largest Node.js best practices list (January 2019)
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Angelos Chalaris is the main maintainer of one of the most successful projects of the year: 30 seconds of code, a collection of JavaScript snippets. concise and well commented.

A great way to learn JavaScript by the example!

As JavaScript continues to rise in popularity, so do many learning resources that aim to help developers master the language and its complex ecosystem.

The top learning resources of 2018 fall roughly into two categories: Tutorials & Cheatsheets and Guidelines & Best Practices.

The former consists of projects such as 30 seconds of code, You Don't know JS and JS Algorithms & Data Structures. These projects provide free high-quality learning resources that explain both programming concepts and some of JavaScript's particular nuances by example, allowing developers to write usable code while slowly gaining an understanding of the JavaScript ecosystem.

The latter consists of projects such as Airbnb Style Guide, Node.js Best Practices and Front-End Checklist. Resources like these help teams of developers maintain JavaScript projects while keeping their code style consistent and ensuring that their codebases are easy to understand, which in turn allows new contributors to join these communities and help them grow.

Conclusion

Looking back at 2018, the biggest story in the JavaScript community may be the Event-stream drama, revealed in November.

There were a lot of talks around this drama, about security concerns and the burden of maintaining open-source projects.

Talking about open source, the acquisition of GitHub by Microsoft in June was a breaking news.

Over the last months, Microsoft did a lot of moves to become one of the major actors in the JavaScript world, as shown by the success of TypeScript language and VS Code editor.

So it may not be so surprising to see a giant like Microsoft taking control of our beloved GitHub… but what a turnaround in the history of Open Source!

Thank you for your attention, and feel free to share this article or reach us on Github if you have any feedback… and see you next year!

Authors

Sacha Grief
Author of Discover Meteor and creator of Vulcan, a React+GraphQL open-source framework.

Available Translations

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