I'm a full stack web developer (mostly JavaEE with some Ruby and bit of Clojure experience) by profession and planning to build a website with a friend for a mutual acquaintance of ours.

What would be a good, state-of-the-art front-end framework to learn & would look sexy on CV?


  • start simple with an image gallery, blog, calendar of upcoming events, CMS support & ability for visitors to add comments (and register)
  • build up back-end REST solution with Sinatra (my friend is excited about it) & a database
  • use HTML5 to make a site that's scalable for different devices and screen sizes


  1. Supports TDD or BDD.
  2. Not bleeding edge, so it has stabilized and has an active community (bonus if it manifests itself on SO), so we can consult others, if we run into trouble.
  3. Last thing we want to spend our time on is debug the magic inside the framework, so are willing to sacrifice easiness of syntax to a well documented and working tool.
  4. I'd personally rather not pick anything that requires PHP, if I can avoid it.
  • 3
    Do you wish to stay with languages you named or are you open to learn for example Python?
    – miroxlav
    Apr 21, 2014 at 22:25
  • 1
    Learning Python would work too, if it opens up possibilities.
    – t0mppa
    Apr 22, 2014 at 23:19
  • Hint: Java (especially for web development) no longer look "sexy" on a CV (just sayin') Maybe AngularJs and NodeJs, so that you only have to learn one new language. AngularJs is "sexy", in demand, powerful & quite easy to learn. Server side, although NodeJs is up & coming, 85% of the world's web sites run on PHP (and the vast majority of those on WordPress :-( If you are using this for career porpoises then search for which languages are most in demand/which pay the most. If you want to use a "sexy" DB, try Mongo or Couch. If you want employment, try MySql or Oracle.
    – Mawg
    Jan 13, 2016 at 12:51
  • Further hint, find popular job sites in your country (or look at the jobs on this site), and find the skills which 1) are most in demand (just how many Sinatra jobs are there out there?) and 2) how much the different skills pay then figure it out. Be aware that, while having a portfolio helps, you might not land a job on the back of "I made a web site for my friend". I still recommend AngularJs & NodeJs, but point out there there are probably ten times as many PHP jobs as Node.Js Python & Django are also fun and in demand
    – Mawg
    Aug 16, 2017 at 8:41
  • It has been four years now. Did you ever choose a framework? If so, please let us know which, in order to help others in future.
    – Mawg
    Mar 16, 2018 at 12:55

2 Answers 2


My recommendation is just learn Angular or React, as you mentioned in comments. Both of them are mature and popular, so you can easily find the documentations.

  • So, are there any tools that help building CMS capabilities with these two or does one have to write it all from scratch?
    – t0mppa
    Sep 19, 2017 at 1:38
  • Not that I know of; I did it from scratch. I wouldn't expect one though: it might be difficult to automatically match the API between frontend framework and backend server. Sep 19, 2017 at 3:23
  • Not really worried about the API, more about creating UI components that let person owning the site to write WYSIWYG stories, tell where to place pictures between the text and what size pictures, etc.
    – t0mppa
    Sep 19, 2017 at 8:44

I was gonna say WordPress Codeception, re "What would be a good, state-of-the-art front-end framework to learn & would look sexy on CV?"! WordPress DOMINATES software development, and no one knows how to do BDD or TDD. Blue ocean. wordpress-bdd.com . But then the last sentance was no PHP! boooo!

  • 1
    Is there really much professional call for WordPress guys? Even if so, I can't see it paying much
    – Mawg
    Aug 16, 2017 at 8:34
  • 1
    Well it's a weird place. It's the absolute bottom of the barrel for some programmers [there is no bar to entry at all], but it's at the same time the biggest software market by a huge margin. It's a place where skill really determines how much you make. The best developers are creating their own markets. WordPress, being the most ubiquitous software platform there is, provides the most opportunities and the largest markets. Ask WooCommerce e-com developers if there is a demand for their services! Aug 16, 2017 at 11:22
  • Sounds like HTML & web site development :-) I certainly know how wide-spread it is. Being a real-time embedded guy, I obviously don't know about the market, so thanks and +1 for helping others. Maybe articles like this might help the OP & others reading this question?
    – Mawg
    Aug 16, 2017 at 22:30
  • A good eye-opener for sure, I was a bit elitist against PHP at the time. That said, I currently work in the financial sector and I just don't see for instance any major bank dropping their current setup just to rebuild their entire code stack with PHP/WordPress, because it would mean a total overhaul of their old apps and would cost decades. Picking up something like Angular or React on the other hand would easily fit in for developing new singe page applications regardless of back end solutions.
    – t0mppa
    Aug 24, 2017 at 2:45
  • 2
    I totally agree. The best use case for PHP is small business scripting. In others words, "email all my clients", or "find the lowest priced item". Hard tech, networking, graphics, machine learning - no. Small biz behavior automation - YES! It's a great platform for consultents who want to specialize in small and med biz. Aug 25, 2017 at 4:48

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