Problems of the Modern Web: Unraveling the Chaos
The World Wide Web, the place we use every day on the internet is changing, but not for the better. It was once seen as a fantastic way to connect with others and learn new things. But for quite some time now, it's turning into something not so great. The modern web has numerous problems we can to talk about. However, we will focus on the critical ones to keep it brief and enjoyable. The topic will be addressed in two phases, beginning with the primary reasons that lead to the problems we will highlight.
Release rushing on projects can lead to significant problems. By prioritizing speed over quality and preparation, companies may miss the critical steps like testing, user feedback and iterative improvements. Which results in many of the problems we will talk about.
Many companies try to save money by starting their projects with limited budgets, but this often leads to difficulties in forming a skilled technical team. It may seem cost-effective initially, but it ultimately impacts every aspects of the project. Unfortunately, many company/project leaders realize the consequences only when their projects make headlines for the bad reasons for them.
Many of No-Code Platforms
In recent times, no-code platforms have made it very easy for anyone to start any kind of project including e-commerce without technical expertise. It's great because more people can join the digital market quickly. However, this comfort comes with challenges in some areas, especially concerning the security of user data.
These platforms hide the technical stuff, so the platform users might not understand the security risks. Also, many of these tools create products that don't work efficiently. They use more hardware power than necessary and still results in poor performance.
Unrealistic Design Decisions
For building maintainable and well-structured web projects, developers often adopt various design patterns, architectures and frameworks without thoroughly understanding their suitability for their specific use cases. While some patterns and best practices work well for specific scenarios, it's essential to carefully evaluate their applicability to individual projects.
However, blindly following the latest trends or the notion that "x pattern is must for the maintainibility" often causes projects being end up with unnecessary complexity, lack of performance, excessive resource usage and the bloated codebases which makes maintanince even harder for the project team.
The Bloat Web
The ease of accessing simple information, such as "breaking news" on the web has been hindered by the pervasive problem of bloat and slowdowns. Despite their straightforward nature many websites suffer from excessive resource loading, intrusive pop-ups and unoptimized media content. Third-party dependencies and the lack of mobile optimization further contribute to the sluggish user experience. These issues including latency and server load, affect even lightweight sites, frustrating users and disrupting their cooking process.
Lack of Technical Modernization
Usually, companies focus on updating only the visible parts of a web project like the user interface, while neglecting to implement modern solutions for the technical aspects. Despite hardware technology improving every year, we rarely see its results in web performance. It's crucial to modernize not only what users see but also the underlying technical components of the project, leveraging the advancements in hardware technology. In fact, as hardware technology improves, projects often get worse using more hardware power for the same functionality. When you try to discuss this with the manager of such projects, the common response you will get is "BECAUSE HARDWARE IS CHEAP!!".
The web's efficiency has become increasingly questionable as even the simple websites and online services demand more from the network than necessary. This issue of excessive network usage often referred to as "web bloat" arises from the tendency of websites to download an unnecessary abundance of files and data during page initializations. As a result, users experience frustratingly slow load times and heightened strain on their network bandwidth.
The internet is flooded with ads and it's becoming harder to distinguish between what's genuine content and what's an advertisement on websites. Many websites are incorporating a massive number of ads, making it challenging for users to know what's real information and what's a paid promotion. We encounter pop-ups, sponsored content, native ads and other promotions making it difficult to access the content we want without disruptions. This overwhelming presence of ads negatively impacts the user experience.
UI/UX Complexity Crisis
Web design has evolved, but it's becoming a problem. Many websites are now too complicated, making it hard for users to find what they need. There is too much stuff on the screen and important things are hidden. The way you are supposed to use the site is not clear and often it can be confusing. This usually impacts the initial load as taking longer time which annoys the users.
Service Cost: Trading Away YOUR PRIVACY
Numerous websites collect significant amounts of personal information without seeking permission, leading to privacy concerns. They obscure the extent of data collection and share it with third parties leaving users feeling powerless to protect their information. The only viable option to avoid this is to completely refrain from using these websites.
Modern web projects face a significant challenge with an excessive reliance on numerous external dependencies known as "dependency overload/hell". Accumulating thousands of dependencies leads to management complexities, update difficulties, security risks, compatibility challenges and performance impacts. Even for a simple task like checking if a number is odd or even, thousands of web projects are relying on external dependencies such as 'is-even' and 'is-odd'.
You didn't expect it to end so soon, did you? Yes, but if we were to discuss all the problems of the web, we would never reach its conclusion. So, to keep it brief, I decided to focus on the most critical issues that I believe are worth highlighting. If you want to experience the extraordinary adventure of these problems visually, you can watch the very fun, documentary-style(!) videos below.
A Demonstration of Modern Web Bloat: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cvDyQUpaFf4
Using the Internet for the 1st time: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pq7NLMwynYg
P.S. I've been wanting to write about this topic for a long time. However, over the last 1.5 years, my life has been extremely busy and I had to take a break from writing. That's why the last time I wrote was in 2021. Since last month, I have managed to reduce the workload on some of the projects I was working on, which means I can finally find time to dedicate to writing again. See you in the next one!