MEAN Stack: What and Why

Natural Group
5 min readMar 31, 2023

What is MEAN?

MEAN represents MongoDB, Express.js, AngularJS, and Node.js. It is an end-to-end JavaScript used in cloud-ready web applications. It is built to ease the development of web applications and handle JSON.

MEAN stacks have flexibility, and scalability, and their ability to handle concurrent users makes them ideal for cloud hosting. It has its web server that can be deployed quickly and the database can be scaled to accommodate temporary usage spikes.

The MEAN stack comprises four technologies-

  • MongoDB -An open-source NoSQL database
  • Express — Forms the backend of MEAN and handles all interactions between the front end and database.
  • AngularJS — Used to develop the user-facing side of the application.
  • Node.js — The open-source JavaScript framework uses asynchronous events to process multiple connections concurrently.

Components of MEAN

Components of the MEAN stack are divided into three categories: frontend, backend, and database.

Frontend

It refers to the front side or the client side of the application. It refers to anything that a user can engage, or interact with on the screen. The purpose of the front end is to create a smooth user interface, user experience, and straightforward internal structure which includes the design, format, and navigation of websites or web apps.

It uses HTML, CSS, and JavaScript languages to design the front portion of the web that includes components like design, theme, styles, functionality, etc. In the MEAN, the AngularJS framework is used.

AngularJS

AngularJS is the open-source JavaScript framework that is used to build single-phase applications and line-of-business applications. It changes static HTML to dynamic HTML and enhances its ability by inserting attributes and elements. It also provides the ability to create custom attributes using JavaScript. It has features like dynamic binding and dependency injection which eliminates the need to write code that was otherwise required to be written.

Backend

It is responsible for storing and organizing data and ensuring the smooth running of operations. If the frontend is the code that runs in the user’s browser, the backend code runs on the server. It receives requests from clients and has the logical knowledge to send appropriate data back to the user. It also includes a built-in database that stores all the information

The APIs built by backend developers can be used by frontend developers for integration of the client-side and server side. Backend can be built using many languages like PHP, Python,, or Java. MEAN stack uses Express and Node.js for the backend.

Express

ExpressJS or Express is a node js web application framework that provides various features for building web and mobile applications. It is used in single-page, multipage and hybrid web application development. Companies using Express are Netflix, uber, eBay, etc.

Node.js

It is an open source cross-platform runtime environment and library used for running web applications. It is used for server-side programming and primarily installed for non-blocking, event-driven servers, such as traditional websites and backend API services.

Node.js is a runtime environment meaning, it contains Web APIs that a developer can access to build a code and a JavaScript engine that parses that code. This makes it lightweight, flexible, and easy to install resulting in optimization and enhanced speed of the project.

Database

Oracle defines a database as “an organized collection of structured information, or data typically stored electronically in a computer system”. It is controlled by Database Management System (DBMS). Data is typically modeled in rows and columns in a tabular format to make processing and data querying efficient.

There are many types of databases depending upon the need of the organization. Some of the popular categories are- Relational databases, Object-oriented databases, Distributed databases, Open source databases, and Cloud databases to name a few. MEAN uses the NoSQL database program MongoDB.

MongoDB

It is a cross platform, document oriented database that provides high performance, high availability, and easy scalability. It works on the concept of collection and document. Every document in MongoDB is described in BSON, a binary representation of the data. This information can be retrienved in JSON format by applications.

It is a document database, which makes it easy for developers to store structured and unstructured data. It was built on a scale-out architecture that is very popular among all kinds of developers for developing scalable applications with evolving data schemas.

It is best if you want to: enable collaboration of large number of teams, scales to high level of rean and write traffic, scale data repository to massive size, evolve the type of deployment as the business changes, store, manage and search data with text, geospatial or time-series dimensions.

Why MEAN stack is ideal for Web and Mobile Application Development?

As the MEAN stack is based on JavaScript, implementation is easy. Developers can use JS platform to implement MEAN stack application for streamlined app development using a single language across the whole application.

It is a great support for organization as it is simpler for companies to follow a modern approach by using MEAN. It helps developers in expanding their skillsets to write modern apps.

It enables UI development which offers a user-friendly experience. It support MVC architecture to generate native-type web applications. Node.js is used for non-blocking type I/O and it removes the overload of the request proceeding to improve site speed. Angular is applied to improve code reusability. MEAN support open source frameworks using cloud repositories. mongoDB is also used to deal with cloud usage.

Conclusion

MEAN stack is highly flexible and modern technology that is very popular among developers. All the components are open source in nature, allowing a free of charge and generous opportunity for the developers. Whether you are building a high-throughput API, simple web application or a microservice, MEAN is the optimal choice.

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