By Sean Toru | last updated 28th December 2020


Software Frameworks

Websites and apps are written in computer programming languages, such as PHP and Javascript. But there are certain features and functions that are common across lots of different types of websites and apps. The experienced developer is an inherently lazy creature who follows the maxim ‘don’t repeat yourself’ (DRY). They do should not spend their time creating the same underlying functionality again and again from app to app, and website to website. That’s where frameworks come in.

An example of a framework is Laravel, which is written in the PHP programming language. It provides a whole bunch of utility features out the box, from security, to database access management, to common front end user interface elements. When a developer is asked by a client to make a custom CMS, ERP or any other kind of back end system, they will typically use a framework like Laravel as a starting point.

Another example of a framework is React, which is written in the Javascript languages, and is intended to be used for ‘front-end’ websites and apps. React (which was built by Facebook) runs in your web browser and helps provide the kind of rich interactivity that people have come to expect from the modern web.

Frameworks are pretty much always a good idea. They drastically speed up software builds (and hence reduce costs), they are typically open source (i.e. free), and the more popular ones are built by some of the best coders in the industry - meaning your project’s starting point is by default more secure and better built than if you went it alone.

Popular back end frameworks include Django, Laravel, Yii2 and Ruby on Rails. Popular front end frameworks include React, VueJS, Angular. Bootstrap is also a front end framework, although it focuses more on style and layout than interactivity.

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