Toptal Engineering Blog

The Toptal Engineering Blog is a hub for in-depth development tutorials and new technology announcements created by professional software engineers in the Toptal network.
Marcos Henrique da Silva
Creating a Secure REST API in Node.js

As patterns go, REST APIs are so useful and ubiquitous that every web developer, regardless of language or platform, should know how to build one.

In this article, Toptal Freelance JavaScript Developer Marcos Henrique da Silva shows how to create a simple and secure REST API for user management on Node.js.

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Viktor Bojović
Developing a Bioinformatics Database for Disulfide Bonds Research

The Protein Data Bank (PDB) bioinformatics database is the world’s largest repository of experimentally-determined structures of proteins, nucleic acids, and complex assemblies. All data is gathered using experimental methods such as X-ray, spectroscopy, crystallography, NMR, etc. This article explains how to extract, filter, and clean data from the PDB to make it suitable for further analysis.

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Guillaume Ferry
Python Machine Learning Prediction with a Flask REST API

Employing Python to make machine learning predictions can be a daunting task, especially if your goal is to create a real-time solution. However, Tensorflow and Scikit-Learn can significantly speed up implementation.

In this article, Toptal Python Developer Guillaume Ferry outlines a simple architecture that should help you progress from a basic proof of concept to a minimal viable product without much hassle.

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Anthony Lucidi
Exploring the Business Benefits of SharePoint

Many businesses use SharePoint but use it poorly. Restructuring and re-education are the keys to getting the most out of SharePoint. In this article, Toptal Freelance SharePoint Developer Anthony Lucidi explores how features like metadata tags, SharePoint workflows, and PowerApps can make a world of difference.

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Shaojiang Cai
Hot Module Replacement in Redux

Hot module replacement is one of the most useful features offered by Webpack. It allows all kinds of modules, including JSON, CSS, and JS files, to be updated at runtime without needing a full refresh.

In this article, Toptal Freelance JavaScript Developer Shaojiang Cai demonstrates how to use Hot Module Replacement in Redux.

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Adam Stelmaszczyk
A Deep Dive into Reinforcement Learning

Machine learning and artificial intelligence are popular topics, vast domains with multiple paradigms to solve any given challenge.

In this article, Toptal Machine Learning Expert Adam Stelmaszczyk walks us through implementing deep Q-learning, a fundamental algorithm in the AI/ML world, with modern libraries such as TensorFlow, TensorBoard, Keras, and OpenAI Gym.

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Pablo Albella
Angular 5 and ASP.NET Core

Microsoft and Google have worked together since Angular 2, rendering ASP.NET Web Forms and MVC Razor obsolete. Nevertheless, while ASP.NET’s front-end tools may be lacking, it is still a great back-end framework.

In this article, Toptal Freelance Angular Developer Pablo Albella teaches us how to create the best architecture for both these worlds.

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Juan Carlos Arias Ambriz
Emulating React and JSX in Vanilla JS

Not everybody likes JavaScript frameworks, nor are they always applicable. But even when we don’t want to or can’t use them, there are some parts that are handy to have.

In this tutorial, Toptal Freelance JavaScript Developer Juan Carlos Arias Ambriz proposes a simple way to recapture some of the benefits of using JSX while working in vanilla JS.

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Sebastian Schocke
How to Do JWT Authentication with an Angular 6 SPA

JSON web tokens (JWTs) provide a method of authenticating requests that’s convenient, compact, and secure. More often than not, Angular apps will include them in their data flows.

In this tutorial, Toptal Freelance Software Engineer Sebastian Schocke shows how to implement JWT authentication in an Angular 6 single-page application (SPA), complete with a Node.js back-end.

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Kevin Bloch
Haxe: Cross-platform Development's Best-kept Secret

The modern, cross-platform programming language Haxe is well-known in some circles, yet many developers have never heard of it. Since it first appeared in 2005, it’s been battle-tested by its loyal—if rather quiet—following.

In this article, Toptal Freelance Software Engineer Kevin Bloch explores the Haxe ecosystem and how to transpile some sample code.

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Johannes Stein
A Cold Dive into React Native (Tutorial for Beginners)

The development of cross-platform mobile applications has always been a source of many challenges. Although tools like Apache Cordova and Haxe do solve some of the associated issues, they are still not the ideal solution in many cases. React Native changes that by providing the power of React.js for mobile platforms and a promise of consistent developer experience across multiple platforms.

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Andrei Smirnov
A Vital Guide to Qmake

Qmake is a build system tool shipped with Qt library that simplifies the build process across different platforms.

In this guide, Freelance Qt Developer Andrei Smirnov describes the most useful qmake features and provides real-world examples for each of them.

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