Modern Web Development with the Modern Cloud

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Different rendering options

It appears to me that making architectural decisions for Web development is more complicated than ever due to the emergence of frameworks that bake in client/server tradeoffs. Yes, I am thinking of Next.js or Remix, which offer different rendering options for different use cases. In any case, there is a lot of information out there to help Web developers make informed decisions.

Typically, Web developers solve these tradeoffs and pick one rendering method or another driven by a combination of data and user experience requirements:

  • Static Site Generation (SSG): Pages of your Web App / Web Site are generated at build time. It helps build sites when data is not changed or updated frequently, such as information portals or news sites. Frameworks like Next.js support features such as Incremental Static Regeneration which means that the static site is regenerated on the server automatically based on a schedule configured by developers.
  • Server-Side Rendering (SSR): Content of your Web App / Web Site is generated dynamically on a request basis. This rendering solution is most appropriate for data-intensive scenarios where content is updated very frequently, it is very large, access latency is critical, or complex processing and transformation is needed before returning the response to the client.
  • Client-Side Rendering (CSR): The data displayed on your Web App / Web Site is served through an HTTP API and rendered by the client on the browser. To improve the performance time at the client device, this data must be lightweight and ready to be consumed without further processing. This approach can help for those cases where user interactions and state management of the user interface need to happen as close to the user as possible to offer a very interactive and reactive user experience.

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