Express JS Backend Web Development Framework

Express.js Framework

Express.js: Simplifying Node.js Web Application Development

Introducing Express.js

Express.js, simply referred to as Express by those who use it, is a fast, unopinionated, and minimalist web application framework for Node.js. It was created by TJ Holowaychuk and is maintained by the Node.js foundation and numerous open source contributors. As one of the core technologies in the MEAN/MERN stack (MongoDB, Express, Angular/React, Node.js), Express has become an industry standard for Node.js web application development since its release in 2010.

Express.js Quick Facts

  • History: Express.js was created by TJ Holowaychuk and initially released in 2010. It’s now maintained by the Node.js foundation and numerous open source contributors.
  • Purpose: Express.js is a minimalist web application framework for Node.js, offering a straightforward and intuitive interface for building web applications and APIs.
  • Middleware: One of the main features of Express.js is its use of middleware, which allows you to add functionality to the request/response pipeline, including handling requests, configuring responses, and adding error handling.
  • Routing: Express.js has robust routing mechanisms, allowing developers to define how the application responds to a client request to a specific endpoint.
  • Integration: Being a part of the MEAN/MERN stack (MongoDB, Express, Angular/React, Node.js), Express is commonly used with these technologies to build complete, end-to-end JavaScript applications.

Why Express.js?

Express simplifies the process of building web applications by providing a simple yet powerful way of defining server behavior. While Node.js natively allows developers to create servers, Express streamlines this process by providing a higher-level, flexible, and lightweight interface that makes server creation more accessible and quicker.

Key Features of Express


Express uses middleware, functions that have access to the request object, response object, and the next middleware function in the application’s request-response cycle. These functions execute sequentially and can perform operations like logging, serving static files, error handling, or adding authentication.


Express offers robust routing mechanisms to control how an application responds to client requests to particular endpoints, which are defined by HTTP methods and URLs.

Template Engines

Express supports template engines, which helps to generate HTML using simple syntax with JavaScript variables. Template engines like Pug, Mustache, and EJS can be easily integrated with an Express app to create dynamic HTML content.

Use Cases

Express is well-suited for building web applications and RESTful APIs. Because it’s part of the MEAN/MERN stack, Express is often used in combination with MongoDB for the database, and Angular or React for the front-end.


Here’s a simple Express server:

javascriptCopy codeconst express = require('express')
const app = express()
const port = 3000

app.get('/', (req, res) => {
  res.send('Hello Express!')

app.listen(port, () => {
  console.log(`Server listening at http://localhost:${port}`)

This code creates a new Express server that listens for GET requests on the root route (/) and responds with ‘Hello Express!’. The server listens on port 3000.

Express simplifies and organizes the process of building complex web applications in Node.js. Its light footprint and high customizability make it a go-to for many developers when working with Node.js. Whether you’re building a small-scale project or a large, complex web application, Express offers the tools to create reliable, robust, and maintainable web applications.

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