App Stores are growing bigger every day with the continuous arrival of new and cutting-edge applications. Whereas we probably make use of several apps every day, we don’t see what’s happening behind the scenes. How did these apps come to life? Who developed them? What did that process look like? In this article, we dive into the topic of web environments, which are the digital spaces where developers do their magic, and where an app comes to life.
Web app environments
Environments are digital spaces where the development, testing and publishing of a website or web app is taking place. It’s a collection of resources that host a website or web app. Generally, app environments can be divided into three main categories, with each their own unique purpose and functionalities: the development environment, the staging or testing environment and the production environment. The three environments form a mechanism that brings together all the components of an app into one space that deploys them. Environments can be compared to a recording studio for a musician: it’s an essential space for creating and recording high-quality products.
1. Development environments
A development environment is where most of the technical programming takes place and is used by developers to build applications and write their code, from platform-specific native apps to progressive web apps and cross-platform apps. Generally, development environments are set up on local PC’s and facilitated by a Git repository. The development environment is located in the backend or server-side of an application, which means that users can’t directly interact with it. The backend is only accessible for developers working on the designated application.
Hey there! Want to know more about backend development and how it relates to frontend development? Check out this article to learn the basics of server-side and client-side app development.
2. Staging environments
Once most of the technical development and coding is finished, the web app is pushed towards the staging environment. This type of environment is typically used by developers to test out the code they’ve written and check it for potential bugs. This way, developers can see if the application, including all its functionalities, works properly in a realistic setting. Because testing forms the core function of the staging environment, it’s often called the “testing environment”. Besides testing code and bug fixes, the staging environment is also designed for demonstrating newly finished work to the product owner, or as a way to let end-users test the product and receive valuable feedback before pushing it to the production environment, which makes the application accessible to the public. Although the staging environment is officially already live and running, only people with the correct URL can access the web app. Usually, these pages are protected by a login wall, in case the link falls into the wrong hands.
When the development team, product owners, and end-users have thoroughly tested the product in the staging environment, the web app is pushed to the production environment. This is the web environment in the development process, and is used for the official launch of the app, web-app, or website. Generally, the production environment isn’t much different than the staging environment. The main difference is that the production environment contains live data and is accessible to the public without needing a specific URL or credentials to view the app. In other words, the production environment is where the finished product enters the market, ready for commercial use.
Web environments at Lizard Global
At Lizard Global, we highly value continuous transparency to our readers and clients. This is why we write blogs that shine a light on the technical processes that happen behind the screens of our in-house developers. We understand that topics like web environments and app development can be a tough cookie to get familiar with. Our blog page is continuously updated with new articles, relating to one of our services. From UI/UX design to our tech stack, we won’t leave a single stone unturned.
Stay tuned for more blogs diving into topics of our app development processes, and follow us on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn to stay up-to-date with brand new blogs and projects we are working on!