Which Language is Better for Web Development in 2021
Backend development is one of the most sought-after skills today. Almost any new business/startup needs a website and a mobile app – both of which connect to a server in the backend. Therefore, backend developers are high in demand in the market and companies are willing to throw large sums of money to developers who can manage the backend well. Get the difference between Python and PHP through this post.
Many programming languages that are being used for backend development are emerging in the market:
Python: Python is one of the most popular choices of backend programming. It is relatively new and has enormous library support.
PHP: PHP has been in the market for a long time and it is widely used even today. Facebook, for instance, has its substantial backend developed in PHP in initial days.
Before we do the comparison, let us first list the points of comparison which significantly will affect our choice of web framework:
Ease of learning: this is arguably one of the most important parameters to decide which web framework is to be used. If the programming language is difficult to learn, there is no point in spending time on it. Today, developer time is more important than execution time for all practical purposes.
Community support: let us face it – we all struggle with bugs, we all face issues while writing programs and we all look for support online at StackOverflow and other forums. If a particular programming language isn’t well known and there is little community support available, it is better to stay away from it.
Documentation: just like community support, it is essential that the programming language/framework has sufficient documentation available for the developers to learn and understand the nuances.
Pricing: some tools/frameworks aren’t free. It might significantly affect the choice of an organization that is low on budget. Generally speaking, a large number of tech companies prefer to use open-source tools and frameworks rather than using paid systems. However, enterprises like banks, insurance companies, etc. prefer to use paid systems.
Library support: if the programming language is widely used, there will be more developers who will be developing libraries for a particular language. As a result, development becomes even easier.
Speed: server-side applications may require high tolerance capacity as well as low latency. Therefore it is important to see which language is faster in terms of execution time.
Choice of web frameworks: it is important that the programming language provides well-designed web development frameworks that are easy-to-use and develop powerful applications.
Debugging: the choice of programming language should also depend on the available debugging tools available for the language. Lack of good debugging tools means that the developers are going to spend more time debugging which essentially isn’t the most productive use of time.
What is Python?
Released in 1991 and developed by Guido van Rossum, Python is an interpreted high-level functional programming language. Python has its uses in web development, software development, and system scripting. It is favorite to many programmers. as well as data scientists as it offers many features like working on different platforms, run on interpreter system, it is easy to code as it’s syntax is similar to the English language.
Although Python has an ample number of uses, the majority of them includes creating web applications, connecting to database systems as it can read and modify files, handling big data, and perform complex mathematics. Python has always been an excellent choice to start learning to program because of the features it offers.
Its syntax can be comprehended quickly and is also easy to debug and so, its so
- It has developed in a way that it can internally deal with memory addresses, garbage collection.
- Provides an interactive shell helping the developers to test the things before actual implementation.
- Its database friendly and offers database interfaces to all major commercial DBMS systems.
- Supports GUI applications and has as a framework for Web. Example: tkmter, WXPython, Django.
Features of Python
- Learning and maintaining Python is easy.
- Python can be executed on various platforms using the same interface.
- Low-level modules can be included in the Python interpreter.
- Python provides support and an ideal structure for large codes.
- Automatic garbage collection is a feature.
- Python offers interactive testing and debugging sessions.
- High-level dynamic data types are offered and also supports dynamic type checking.
- Allows integration with Java, C, and C++ programming code.
- Runs on diverse platforms like Windows, Unix, Linux, Mac OS X.
- Efficiently on the server-side and is easy to learn.
- PHP supports a range of databases.
- It is open-source and hence free to download.
Features of PHP
- Supports many databases, such as Oracle, MySQL, and more thus offers database integration.
- Easy to use and code than other scripting languages.
- Efficient compared to other scripting languages, e.g., ASP and JSP
- Open-source and hence can be downloaded and used for free.
- PHP has some predefined error reporting constants to generate an error notice or warning
- PHP offers access logging by creating a summary of recent accesses of the user.
Head to Head Comparison
|Ease of Learning||Easy to learn. Even beginners prefer to start their journey with Python.||It was not developed as a general-purpose language. It is tough to learn as compared with Python.|
|Community Support||Python is matching pretty close with PHP eventually.||It offers outstanding community support as it has been in the market for quite a while.|
|Documentation||The documentation provided on its official websites and other forums.||PHP also matches Python here and is well documented.|
|Library Support||Python has exceptionally well-developed library support for almost all types of applications.||Although PHP lags here, Packagist (PHP packages repository) is a strong backbone holding PHP|
|Database Connectivity||Database integration is not as strong as PHP.||It provides access to more than 20 different databases.|
|Speed||Python is fast.||PHP is 3 times faster.|
|Frameworks||Django, Flask, Pylons, Pyramid.||Codeigniter, Zend, Laravel, Symfony.|
|Debugging||Python provides a powerful debugger called PDB (Python Debugger)||PHP provides the XDebug package for debugging.|
To summarize, for most points, both Python and PHP are similar to each other. For others, Python is better than PHP. Python seems to be a winner over PHP. Here is what we would recommend:
- If you are an experienced PHP programmer, stick to PHP since you already know it in and out.
- For intermediate programmer, you might want to learn Python and shift to it for better job opportunities.
- If you are a novice programmer who wants to learn backend development, start learning Python and eventually move to Python-based frameworks.
We hope you loved this comparison. If you have any point to share with us relevant to this topic then post in comments section below. 🙂