By James Ater on Apr 25, 2014 -
Top Web Application Frameworks
Site platforms, or web application frameworks, are a great tool developed for site-owners and web masters who work with dynamic websites, web applications, and have to deal with large databases. Today, when everyone and their mother has a blog, a Facebook account, and multiple other accounts, the days of building websites page-by-page in a text-editor are long gone. Choosing and applying a web application framework on your website allows you to save a great amount of time and effort, and will provide a much simpler, quicker, and more effective way of managing your website in the future.
What they do
Web application frameworks are designed to simplify the process of making a website/web application. They provide a foundation which you can further modify to make your application or website look and perform the way you want it to. Web application frameworks are an indispensable tool for webmasters who wish to build large websites with complex databases without having to sacrifice excess amounts of time, effort, and money to achieve their goal. Whether it’s a blog, an online store, or your business’s website — web application frameworks will significantly simplify the creation process.
Choosing a Web Application Platform
Starting a debate amongst webmasters about the best web application framework will result in you being swamped with opinions that might not actually do anything to help you make a decision. Some of the factors you should consider when choosing a web application framework are:
First of all, you must consider the language in which the framework’s code is written. Whether it’s JAVA, Ruby, Python, PHP, or one of the ASP.NET languages, if you prefer to get your hands dirty with the code you have to consider what you want to be working with. Consider, also the end use and the business purposes of your website. If it is a blog, go for straight for something like Drupal or WordPress and get a framework + CMS bundle that will get you up and running in no time. Otherwise, think about what exactly you need from your framework, and then find one that fulfils your needs.
Secondly, consider the license frameworks come with. A great deal of platforms are open-source and come with an Apache License. This means that these platforms are free to use, share, modify, etc. However, Microsoft’s ASP.NET web application framework comes with a Proprietary license. Web Application Frameworks with a Proprietary license may come with certain conditions and restrictions. Professional editions of ASP.NET provide you with more opportunities, but at a higher cost.
Moonsearch has over 70 billion analysed pages over more than 3 billion domains. With this data we were able to compile a list of the most commonly used web application frameworks and website platforms on the web.
A predominant majority of websites are built using the PHP language. A little over 68% of websites tracked and analysed by moonsearch.com are written in PHP, of which over 50% use PHP versions 5.0 and newer. This, partially, has to do with the type of content most people chose to share. Blogging, sharing news, building personal websites, and creating a website for a business all require management of a large amount of information. Many site-owners chose to make their life easier by using a Content Management System such as Drupal or WordPress on their website.
Drupal is used on 42% of websites using a PHP-based CMS, and WordPress is used on 55%.
Of course, WordPress alone isn’t what makes PHP number 1. A simpler learning curve and the fact that most PHP-built platforms come with an Apache license gives the language a significant advantage over Python and CLI languages. Needless to say, the fact that so many websites are built using PHP means there is a large community of webmasters that are willing to help out those who are new to website-building.
Microsofts ASP.NET framework represents nearly 29% of all the analysed websites. The reliability and scalability of this framework makes it an attractive choice for large websites. This framework automatically detects and recovers from errors like memory leaks and deadlocks, ensuring that your website or application is always up and running.
The ASP.NET language is used in many different frameworks, however 99% of analysed websites written in ASP.NET languages use the solution created and supported by Microsoft itself. That said, Monorail is an emerging ASP.NET framework that is gaining popularity amongst Ruby on Rails users who are looking to switch to a different programming language.
Even though the Ruby programming language represents under 1% of analysed websites, it has many great features and a lot of devoted users. The most popular Ruby-based framework is Ruby on Rails, which is an open-source web application frameworks. Websites like Groupon and Shopify are known to use Ruby on Rails. 90% of websites written on Ruby use the Ruby on Rails web application framework.
Websites like Linkedin, Amazon, and Ebay are either written in Java or actively use Java on their websites. This language allows for applications to be run on a large variety of different platforms. The most popular frameworks that use the Java language are Play! (43%), JSF (33%), Spring Framework (12%), and Spark (10%).
Popularity alone isn’t reason enough to chose one web application framework over another, however knowing this information can help you gauge how much support you will be able to receive if you encounter problems or how difficult it will be to find a software/website developer who will work on your platform-based website.
Building a website is important, but it’s of no use to anyone if it’s not online. If you’re not using somebody else’s hosting services and would prefer to rely on yourself you will need to create a server. Read more about software used to create and maintain servers in our next post.
About James Ater
An experienced developer, James is the one who stood behind Moonsearch.com at the dawn of the project. He knows the algorithms Moonsearch is using from the inside, and it's a pleasure for him to talk about the processes the project is based on. Inspired by technology he is glad to give you a full understanding of what the practical purpose of Moonsearch is and how it can be used to evaluate your competitors, define your brand's position on the market and identify the gaps for the development. Why to create technology if not to benefit from it? James knows how to do both and is happy to share his vision.