There are a number of popular web development languages with each having their own sets of benefits. People interested in learning web development often wonder which are the best languages to learn. The programming language to learn, however, actually depends on what the web developer needs to accomplish and the area of specialization. Web development can be split into three main categories, i.e., client-side scripting, server-side scripting, and databases. There are many languages that are common and can be used generically, but the specialized client or server-side languages also exist to provide advanced functionality.
The following are the most popular languages of each category:
1. Basic/Common types of web development languages
– HTML/HTML5, which stands for Hyper Text Markup Language, is a standardized markup language allowing to format and structure the web content. HTML is basically where the web originated from and HTML5 is now the new standard of creating interactive and feature rich sites.
– Cascading Style Sheets, (CSS), makes the process of defining the format and looks of a web page automated and extremely easy. Web developers can define how multiple pages will look like using a single CSS code along with HTML. Webpage elements like font, color, layout, etc., can all be specified in a single file that is kept separate from the rest of the code of a web page.
2. Client-side Development
– JavasScript is one of the most popular client-side scripting languages and brings web pages to life. It enables developers to integrate games, animations, interactivity, apps and other dynamic effects into the web pages.
– ActionScript is used for creating Adobe Flash content and is also widely used for creating websites rich in multimedia content including streaming video/audio and animations.
3. Server-side Scripting
Server-side languages are the facilitators of transfer of information from the web server to the user/browser.
– PHP is the most popular of all and is being used by roughly 75% of web servers. PHP is open source, meaning that it has a huge community support and excellent cross platform compatibility. It is best suited for sites with lesser traffic demands.
– Java is more suited for heavy traffic sites and big names. Apple App store and Amazon, both use Java to their advantage. The biggest advantage Java has over other languages is its raw speed. JSP, Java Servlets, and WebObjects are some of the examples of solutions using Java.
Other popular server-side languages include Python (high-level programming) and Ruby, designed to simplify the coding process for a consistent, concise and flexible code.
Comments are welcome here from web developers to shed more light on this topic as well as share experiences, using a particular programming language.