Websites are similar to desktop applications in terms of usage of programming languages. Websites that only require a simple online presence are built using HTML which is a markup language and such sites are not dynamic. HTML is the basic language of the website however if one requires a dynamic website the kind that uses databases and web services you will require the use of a programming language. There is a misconception that website programming languages have a smaller learning curve and that one can simply build a dynamic website by reading up about the programming language in a day.
On the contrary the programming languages used in Web Development have their base in the very own desktop programming languages. In fact in certain aspect Web Development can be considered tougher than Desktop Application Development since a website is out there and can be used by many users simultaneously which requires complicated programming.
There are several programming languages used in Web Development which are further classified into server-side programming languages. Below is a brief introduction of the programming languages used in web development.
This is a very popular programming language and is widely used in Web Development. This is one language that was designed for Web Development but is also used as a general-purpose programming language. Introduced in 1995 this is now used on millions of web servers world-wide. PHP is an interpreted language and is also a free software. It is quite robust in the sense that it can be utilized on almost all operating systems and web servers. However interpreted languages tend to be slightly slower than compiled programming languages. There are many open source content management and e-commerce software available for PHP, not to mention PHP frameworks too.
ASP.NET is a Web application framework that is used in Web Development. ASP .NET supports several programming languages like Visual Basic, C#, J# to name a few. It was developed by Microsoft and is not free to use. Furthermore it is mainly used on the Windows platform and less supported on other platforms. The programming language used is in the compiled form and thus the website tends to run slightly faster. The cost involved using ASP .NET tends to be slightly higher than other programming languages though.
Java is a general purpose programming language. Java is very popular for client-server web applications. It is also free to use released under the GNU license. Java is also a compiled language and is compiled to Byte code that can be run on any Java Virtual Machine (JVM) regardless of the architecture. Java has a great deal of third-party libraries that can assist during web development.
Ruby on Rails:
This is an open source web application framework that uses the Ruby programming language. Ruby uses the MVC – Model-View-Controller architecture for application development. This is a language that is less popular among web developers and doesn’t have as many sites hosted using it compared to the other programming languages.
Python is a free to use programming language under the open source license. Python runs on Windows, Linux, and MAC operating systems. It is a general purpose programming language. This supports multiple programming paradigms.
The above list is not the complete list of Programming Languages used for web development however it is a list of the most popular ones. Many of the programming languages have their roots in the basic programming languages like C, C++. Thus basic programming knowledge and concepts are usually essential before setting off learning these Web Development programming languages. It is safe to say that web development is best left to the professional web development companies.
Web development may sound easy and many do take it upon themselves to making their own websites. But in fact the programming languages used to build websites are no different from the usual desktop applications languages in terms of complexity and it is best to get your website developed from a good web development company rather than take it upon yourself to build it.