Web development these days often involves creating dynamic websites that allow user interaction and the organization of large amounts of data. As a server-side language, commonly used by web developers to build such websites, PHP is a useful development tool. Facebook.com, built with PHP, is a testament to being a powerful programming language, and more than capable of doing the above tasks.
A language like PHP allows developers to create a dynamic website, where pages can be generated automatically – dramatically improving efficiency on maintaining a large number of static HTML pages. The PHP framework can take this efficiency one step further and allow the developer to write less code to achieve common functionality.
Frameworks are found in most programming languages and often allow for simpler and more streamlined code development. When building web systems in PHP, code writers often create custom functions to handle tasks such as:
- calendar generation
- User access control
- database interaction
- url generation
- generate images
Benefits of PHP frameworks
In most popular PHP frameworks, there are modules or plugins to automatically handle tasks like the ones above, which only require a few lines of configuration code by the developer. When developing large web application systems, the time spent not having to write custom functions for such tasks allows the developer to focus more time on custom code for the current project.
Using a popular PHP framework means that there will be a large community of developers who will also use the same framework and often contribute source code updates and plug-in modules. Since every developer works on slightly different projects, the common scope of all the modules you’ve contributed to often means that someone else has already written a module to fit the task you’ll need in your system.
Another benefit of using the PHP framework with a large community is that when a new PHP vulnerability is deployed, the framework will usually be patched very quickly, allowing you to simply update your framework’s core files. When using custom PHP code outside of the framework, it will be up to the developer to fix every part of their system when there is news of a new PHP vulnerability and it may be easier to go unnoticed.
For seasoned PHP developers, they may already have a set of sample code, custom functions, and a way to design the web systems they prefer. Where frameworks can really add benefit is for new programmers or seasoned developers alike, who prefer to focus their time on getting a site up and running quickly and focus less on the common writing functions of all web application systems.
Difference Between Framework and CMS
While many popular PHP Content Management Systems (CMS) can also be used by developers to quickly create dynamic websites, PHP Framework usually has fewer resources and allows the developer to choose only the functionality required for the project. Overall, CMS will provide everything needed for CRUD (Create, Read, Update, Delete) in an easy to use admin interface. With a PHP framework, although there will usually be an additional module for such an interface, you have the flexibility to create one custom for your specific project.
Popular PHP frameworks
If you are a new or experienced developer and are interested in trying out the PHP framework, you can consider one of the most popular frameworks available: