I have a terminology question.

I was searching about tips to design a website that is using less server-side code and more client-side code, and realized I don't really know which exact term to search if there is one. Example: Maximizing CDNs usage for library, using widgets when possible, integration of client-side social-media SDKs.

So my question is not about tips themselves, but about the existence of such a term.

Edit: I already know about SPAs and Client-Side Javascript Frameworks. This is what brings me to wonder if there's a name to an approach where you focus on client-side code at a point that you maximize external resources.

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    I take it my suggestion of searching for "Client-Side Javascript Frameworks" or "Client-Side HTML5 Frameworks" didn't work for you. Commented Jan 22, 2013 at 20:01
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    You seem to be deeply focused on what this thing is called. Why? If you must know, it's called "Client-Server" or "Fat Client." The opposite approach is "Thin-client" or "Multi-tier." Commented Jan 22, 2013 at 20:08
  • I'm currently using knockout. But yes, without a client-side JS framework, only using client code to display data wouldn't be imaginable. Commented Jan 22, 2013 at 20:08
  • @Robert Yes, how it is called is what is interesting me. Knowing how a thing is called is often useful when the core of the problem is 'how can I search for this'. Commented Jan 22, 2013 at 20:10
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    You mean the "fat client" one? It's not especially meaningful; you'll get much better mileage if you search for "client-side frameworks," and let your explorations happen from there. Commented Jan 22, 2013 at 20:12

2 Answers 2


What if we flip this around and talk about how the client and server interacts and not necessarily which has more code. I've seen this called (and this is a phrase I like):


  • Interesting term. If the server-side code is not there to provide the MVC algorithms since a JS client-side framework is already doing most of the job, then it's only there to provide some functions and resources, thus API-centric. I'll try this keyword in my searches too. Commented Jan 23, 2013 at 1:57

I can't guarantee less server-side code, but you might want to search for:

  • Single Page Applications (a.k.a. SPAs)
  • Thanks. I would make such websites SPAs for sure. I'm just wondering if there's a name for an approach like the one I'm describing. Because using less server-side code and maximizing external ressources usage is definitively an approach which has a lot of repercussions on a website design. Commented Jan 22, 2013 at 20:01

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