Server-side scripting offers a seamless experience to end users by running the software to execute instructions on the server. They navigate, locate and deliver information requested by the user in a fast and smooth process.
Server-side scripting offers many advantages that include, but are not limited to, ease to add, modify content via content management systems, enhanced security and quicker loading time. The primary advantage that comes with server-side scripting is its ability to highly customize responses by taking into account user specific requirements and queries and rendering device-specific output through responsive web development.
A number of programming languages can be used to write server-side scripts, some of which are ASP, Perl, PHP, Python and Ruby. A choice from these languages is influenced by a large number of factors, namely, the general preference of your developer, exact requirements of your site, responsive web development needs, and the database and operating system setup. However, it is advised to thoroughly analyze and compare the many features, advantages, limitations, scope and functionality of each language before making a decision.
PHP and Python are two most widely used server-side scripting languages and together they support some of the major websites like Google, Facebook, Wikipedia etc. While PHP dominates the web industry with a whopping 80% of the market share, Python gained popularity after Google employed it to power some of its projects. Today, many popular websites like YouTube, Instagram and Pinterest work on Python. Both languages are powered with multitudinous features that aid in responsive website development, something that gives you global outreach in today’s digital world. Responsive web development must be seen as an intrinsic element of the end product and the entailing technology must be chosen accordingly.
As a reputed PHP development company, Potenza has received accolades from customers worldwide for its unmatched expertise in the web development domain. And while the choice of a scripting language remains largely at the developer’s discretion, a look into the many aspects of both these languages can aid in reaching a conclusion.
PHP and Python, both:
1) Are Open Source and hence, come with detailed documentation.
2) Easy to learn as compared to other languages like C++ and Perl.
3) Run on almost all platforms and operating systems thus supporting responsive web development.
4) Constantly evolve by enhancements from developers and large user community.
5) Have several IDEs and debuggers
Advantages of PHP –
1) PHP is an open source scripting language which means it is free to use and comes with an unrestricted access to a large number of information libraries and discussion forums where developers from all over the world are constantly at work to enhance features for extended functionalities.
2) PHP is easy to learn. Being open source, it comes with extensive documentation with detailed information on the language, making it easy even for beginners. A large support community makes development and debugging easier.
3) PHP offers more flexibility than other scripting languages. Core functionalities can be extended as per individual development requirements through extensive libraries of extensions developed by fellow developers around the world. Custom extensions and components can also be easily embedded in the source code.
4) PHP is compatible with all popular relational database management systems like MySQL, Oracle, Sybase, Microsoft SQL Server and can be easily deployed on multiple platforms and operating systems which makes it ideal for responsive website development. It is also supported by all major web servers like Apache and IIS etc. It can be easily integrated with AJAX to perform asynchronous operations.
5) PHP is used to create robust, secure, dynamic and interactive websites that range from simple blogs and information forums as well as complex e-commerce and chatting websites.
6) PHP comes with a set of Design Patterns that help solve recurring problems in less time.
Limitations of PHP:
1) Security – The open source nature of PHP doubles as both an advantage and a disadvantage. Since the source code is easily available, it can be used by hackers to gain unwarranted access that can result in loss of data with serious implications.
2) Maintenance – Handling large applications can be troublesome with PHP since it’s not entirely modular. For large applications, the code can become complex posing problems in maintaining the website.
3) Loose Type – PHP performs automatic data type conversions in most situations and not accompanied by a stringent compiler and interpreter that gives warning/message for bad code practices.
Advantages of Python –
1) Python is open source and provides developers with support from a large developer community. The standard library contains scripts for many widely used programming tasks which significantly reduce the length of code and execution time.
2) Python is fairly easy to learn with its simple syntax and large resource bank which is maintained and evolved by developers across the globe through knowledgeable and helpful information.
3) Python is easily readable like a high level language as opposed to a low level language. This works as an advantage in multi-developer teams as it helps developers understand codes developed by others.
4) Python is an object-oriented programming language allowing for data structures that can be reused eliminating repetitive work. This reduces complexity and runtime.
5) Python has its own unit testing framework and its strong integration and text processing capabilities often beat its costly counterparts.
6) Python aids in robust, flexible scalable and high-quality responsive web development that offer a surreal experience to users at low investment.
7) Django, a high-level framework written in Python, helps turn responsive web development into a simplified task.
Limitations of Python:
1) Speed – Python can be a little slower than other scripting languages since it works with an interpreter instead of a compiler. This may affect performance in certain scenarios.
2) Database Access Layer – Python’s database access layer is still in the developing stage and is expected to evolve soon. However, developers in immediate need of applications that interact smoothly with databases to navigate and retrieve complex data may face certain problems.
3) Lack of documentation – Python is less extensively documented than PHP. Developers must investigate for supporting documents/references before putting too much dependence on a package/module.
The choice between PHP and Python has been debatable and the focal point of discussions by developers and businesses for years. Besides the individual characteristics of these languages, a lot of other factors come into play which have the potential to influence the decision like budget constraints, project specific requirements, performance expectations, flexibility and versatility. Scalability to accommodate expansion and responsive web development for varying screen sizes also have their place as deciding factors. Both languages have their pros and cons and the conflict between the two can only be resolved by giving due consideration to the expectations from and approach for the task at hand.
Whatever your decision may be, an influential website gets form only in the expert hands of skilled python developers and under the guidance of a professional PHP development company.