The development board has additional circuitry in it, including a serial adapter so it can talk to your computer over USB. It's an appropriate choice if you plan to use it as a standalone microcontroller. It's less appropriate if you want to use it as a wifi adapter for another microcontroller.NodeMCU is used in reference to both the software, and development boards that are clones of the original NodeMCU board (the one you show a picture of is one of the countless NodeMCU clones)The ESP32 is a much more capable microcontroller, but also more expensive (like $5-7 instead of $2), appropriate for use as a standalone microcontroller - it's not the sort of thing you'd use as a wifi adapter.
using the esp01 as wifi adapter means that i need to program the main microcontroller (for example an UNO) as if i were receiving commands from serial?instead using the esp12 could i directly "control" the board from a web interface?i am getting a little bit crazy seeing the countless nodemcu clones but mainly they seem all the same. The only things that change are the ldo and the ttl converter (ch340/cp2102)about the esp32 i m still not convinced, it s more powerful for sure but i don't see the same library around compared to the esp8266