Remember the days when JavaScript was just a way to make your web pages a bit more interactive? Fast forward a few years and JavaScript has grown into a full-fledged programming language, capable of powering complex web applications and server-side code.

In this post, we’ll explore one of the powerful features of JavaScript: asynchronous programming. We’ll look at how JavaScript handles asynchronous code, and how you can use promises and async/await to write cleaner, more understandable asynchronous code.

Asynchronous JavaScript: A Quick Overview Link to heading

JavaScript is single-threaded, which means it can only do one thing at a time. But many operations, like fetching data from a server or reading a file from disk, are inherently slow and would block the rest of your code from running if JavaScript waited for them to complete.

To handle this, JavaScript uses an event loop to manage asynchronous operations. When an operation is started, JavaScript moves on to the next line of code without waiting for the operation to finish. When the operation is done, it fires an event, and any code that was waiting for that event gets to run.

This is great for performance, but it can make your code hard to reason about. That’s where promises and async/await come in.

Promises Link to heading

A promise is an object that represents the eventual completion or failure of an asynchronous operation. Here’s an example of how you might use a promise:

let promise = new Promise((resolve, reject) => {
  // Simulating an asynchronous operation
  setTimeout(() => {
    resolve('Operation succeeded');
  }, 1000);

promise.then(result => console.log(result)); // "Operation succeeded" after 1 second

In this code, new Promise() creates a new promise object. The setTimeout() function simulates a slow operation. The resolve() function is called when the operation is successful, and reject() is called if the operation fails.

Async/Await Link to heading

Promises can still lead to complicated code when you have many asynchronous operations that depend on each other. That’s where async/await comes in.

Async/await is a way to write asynchronous code that looks like synchronous code. Here’s how you might rewrite the previous example using async/await:

async function asyncOperation() {
  let result = await new Promise((resolve, reject) => {
    setTimeout(() => {
      resolve('Operation succeeded');
    }, 1000);

  console.log(result); // "Operation succeeded" after 1 second


In this code, the async keyword tells JavaScript that the function will return a promise. The await keyword tells JavaScript to pause execution of the function until the promise is resolved or rejected.

Conclusion Link to heading

Asynchronous programming is a powerful tool in JavaScript, but it can be tricky to get right. Promises and async/await help manage the complexity, making your asynchronous code easier to write and understand. So next time you’re writing JavaScript, give them a try!

For more details refer to MDN docs