New to JAMstack? Everything You Need to Know to Get Started
Let’s quickly get the basic definitions out of the way. The JAMstack isn’t a specific set of tools, but a new, modern way of building websites & apps. Where does “J-A-M” come from, you may ask? From these three concepts at the core of this paradigm:
APIs: All server-side functions or databases actions are abstracted into reusable APIs, accessed over HTTPS with JS. Be it SaaS, third-party services or custom-built.
Markup: Templated markup should be prebuilt at build time, usually using a site generator for content sites, or a build tool for web apps.
Let’s take a quick journey back in time with a year-by-year view of the rise of the JAMstack. It should clarify where it’s at right now and where it’s going.
→ 2015: Static sites are slowly making a comeback from the ruins of the web’s early years. The first CMS-deniers are making them “cool” again.
→ 2016: As you would expect, backlash occurs. Static sites aren’t cool at all—they lack too many features to build anything other than blogs. In the meantime though, a small group of developers is coining the “JAMstack” and slowly promoting its principles in modern dev circles.
→ 2017: The year JAMstack really comes to life, for a somewhat niche community. Static sites aren’t “static” anymore. This modern web revolution gives you all the features you need to build “hyper-dynamic” sites & apps. Sequoia Capital, Mailchimp & Red Bull are a few of the first big enterprises to build JAMstack projects.
→ 2018: Here’s a phrase I would bet you’ve heard or read last year: “Just discovered the JAMstack and, oh my God, it’s amazing!” Yup, it has made a mainstream breakthrough with more & more people are talking about it. Substantial funding was announced for tools like Gatsby, Netlify, Contentful, etc. It will also be remembered as the year of the first JAMstack_conf (which we’ll make sure not to miss next time).
→ 2019: Hard to tell what the future holds, but it’ll no doubt be exciting. 2019 enters as the year of maturity & accessibility