What is the difference between JavaScript and Node.js?

JavaScript is a high-level programming language that makes our web pages and web applications dynamic and interactive by giving them the ability to think and act. JavaScript is a lightweight (easy to learn syntax) and object-oriented programming language whereas Node.js is a runtime environment built on google v8 engine and typically used to represent a list of objects and functions that JavaScript programs can access.

In this post, we will walk you through what JavaScript and Node.js are, and then we will demonstrate the differences between JavaScript and Node.js.

What is JavaScript?

JavaScript’s first version was launched in 1995 and it was developed by Brendan Eich of Netscape (then called LiveScript). As discussed earlier, JavaScript is a high-level programming language that has all the functionalities normally a programming language has. JavaScript is an Object-oriented programming language that can be used on the client-side as well as on the server-side and developers not only use it for creating web pages but also it is used for game development and mobile app development.

What is Node.js?

Node.js was first introduced in 2009 developed by Ryan Dahl and is a runtime environment for JavaScript built on Google’s v8 engine whose main purpose is to run JavaScript on the server and hence JavaScript can be executed outside of the browser. The nicest part about Node.js is that it never blocks I/O, is event-driven, and can be used to create highly scalable apps. In Node.js everything is a module and using these modules developers make use of Node.js in creating web APIs, Rest API servers, command-line applications, and real-time chat applications.

Difference between JavaScript and Node.js

JavaScript is a proper high-level programming language used to create web scripts whereas Node.js is a run time environment built on google’s v8 engine.

JavaScript is executed in the browser whereas using Node.js gives us the ability to execute JavaScript outside the browser.

JavaScript can manipulate DOM or add HTML within whereas Node.js doesn’t have the capability to add HTML.

JavaScript is mainly used to create front end web applications or develop client-side whereas Node.js is used on the back end development that is server-side development

JavaScript follows the standard of JavaScript when writing programs whereas Node.js is written in C++ while using the v8 engine, it runs JavaScript outside the browser.

JavaScript requires any running environment as it can execute on any engine such as Firefox’s spider monkey, v8 engine of google chrome, JavaScript core of Safari whereas Node.js runs only on the v8 engine of google chrome.


JavaScript is a high-level, lightweight (easy syntax) and object-oriented programming language that is used by almost every web developer to create web pages, web applications, mobile applications and is also used in game development. Node.js is a JavaScript runtime environment built on google’s v8 engine which is used to run JavaScript outside the browser and to put it simply it is just an extension of a JavaScript library with many modules hence making JavaScript even more powerful.

In this post, we saw what JavaScript and Node.js are and then we described the differences between them. It should be noted that for any web developer the first step is to learn JavaScript and then go for Node.js.

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