Node.js Tutorial for Beginners (Part 1): Intro to Node and Express

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Over the course of the past year and a half, I’ve been slowly, and a bit sporadically, teaching myself web development technologies. I’ve had some success with HTML, CSS, and basic, vanilla JavaScript (you can see some of my Fiddles here). But now I’m interested in diving into Node.js, and I’m using this series to chronicle my journey. Hopefully, I’m not in over my head, but, even if I am, I hope this will help fellow novices or experienced devs new to Node and JavaScript. 

Node.js is a fascinating technology with a quickly growing user base. Though it’s often referred to as a framework, Node actually functions as a JavaScript runtime, powered by Google’s V8 engine — the same engine used to power the Chrome browser. Thus, Node essentially takes the place of the browser in the execution of JavaScript code. This allows developers to use JavaScript, a language designed to be compiled and run on the client-side, on the server-side, making a full-stack JavaScript application possible. In addition to that, Node is a pretty scalable solution, as proven by its adoption by several large-scale organizations, including Netflix, Uber, PayPal, and NASA.