When I started developing websites, back in the days when we wrote HTML proudly in uppercase, Web development frameworks1 didn’t really exist in the form we have today. I’m sure I’m not the only one who could dig out a folder of “include” files that helped me handle repetitive coding functions such as interacting with databases and forms.
Today, we can choose from a huge array of frameworks, which provide us with different approaches to creating websites. If you are like me, you probably just ended up using a framework either because your job required it or because you like trying out new technologies and found one that works for you. But if you had to choose anew today, which would you pick?
A Hard Decision?
If you were starting out in Web development today, I believe you would have a hard choice — not only in which language to choose, but which, if any, framework to focus on. Some frameworks are hugely popular, such as Ruby on Rails2 and Django3, both of which power great websites and applications. Others, such as CodeIgniter4 and CakePHP5, may not get as much press but have thriving communities and conferences6 dedicated to them.
Not Just the Language
The choice should be informed by more than the language. Of course, liking the syntax and the approach is important, but other factors — such as the size of the community that supports the framework, its plugin architecture, the activeness of its development, the industries that use it, how easy it is to deploy in a live environment — play a part.
I’ll confess that one of the reasons I was put off of learning Rails when it was first released was the numerous stories I heard of how difficult it was to set up in a live environment, something that is thankfully a lot simpler nowadays.
Take Our Survey
If you were asked today to recommend a framework to a new developer, which would it be?
In addition to taking our survey below, we would love to hear the reasons for your answer. Also, please let us know of any valuable resources you used when starting out with a framework, whether a website, podcast or conference that really made things click for you. We’ll pull them together in another post to share with our readers.
If your favorite isn’t listed in the survey, please do add it in the “Other” text field. We look forward to hearing your thoughts.
- 1 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Web_service_Frameworks
- 2 http://rubyonrails.org/
- 3 https://www.djangoproject.com/
- 4 http://codeigniter.com/
- 5 http://cakephp.org/
- 6 http://eeciconf.com/
- 7 http://polldaddy.com/poll/5553650/