“What is a full stack developer” is a question that mystifies non-programmers. I understand this because I run a content agency that pairs techies with non-technical editors. The term comes up, and those not steeped in tech kind of squint at you if you say that and ask, “what….?”
What Is a Full Stack Developer? The Short Version
So first, let’s give the short, direct answer to this question. A “full stack” developer is a software developer with a general enough skill set to build all required components for a working piece of software. They can handle the database, the programming logic, and the user interface, and they put it all together to deliver.
In a nutshell, that’s what we software people mean when we toss around this term. But I can understand if you’re still scratching your head. You’re probably wondering about some things now.
- Why is it some kind of special thing that a software developer knows how to build all of the parts of the software?
- Why is writing all of the software called “stack” and what does it mean for it to be “full?”
- What is the origin of this expression?
- How does one become a full stack developer?
- Should you want to be a full stack developer?
For the rest of this post, I’m going to answer those questions. When you’re finished, you’ll know everything you could ever have wanted to know about the term “full stack developer” and some things about software development in general, besides.