Most dynamic websites are created not only with one of these programming languages but with the two of them.
What Is PHP?
PHP was developed in 1994 by Rasmus Lerdorf; its name originally came from Personal Home Page, and it was a set of scripts used by Rasmus to track visits to his site. Nowadays, PHP stands for Hypertext Preprocessor, and it’s an open-source scripting language for back-end development.
PHP is used to manage dynamic content, databases, session tracking, and e-commerce sites. According to W3Tech’s data, PHP is currently used by 78.9% of all websites with a known server-side programming language. This means that 8 out of 10 websites you visit on the web are using PHP. And in terms of market share, 78.9% means 20 million websites and applications using PHP.
PHP developers can:
- Create dynamic content.
- Open, write, read, delete and close files on the server.
- Receive and send cookies.
- Collect data from forms.
- Modify database information.
- Perform data encryption.
Companies such as Facebook, Wikipedia, Slack, WordPress, and MailChimp are currently using PHP.
- Create interactive features and forms for websites.
- Develop mobile applications (nowadays. JS is no longer exclusive for websites).
- Create web browser-based games.
- Back-end web development.
➡️ If you’re looking to hire a PHP developer and don’t know where to start check out our blog post How to hire a PHP developer!
1. Server-Side vs Client-Side scripting
PHP is a server-side scripting language – which means that it interprets scripts on the server-side rather than on the client-side. This type of scripting is used at the backend, where the source code is not hidden at the client-side (browser). Server-side scripting is also useful in customizing the web pages and implementing dynamic changes on the website.
PHP has all the server-side functions such as building custom web content, authenticating users, displaying results, and overall managing requests.
PHP includes multi-threaded that is synchronous by nature. This means that it blocks input/output to perform multiple tasks simultaneously with a systematic approach. In simpler words, despite being ‘multi-threaded’, developers can’t execute the second line of code until the first one is, making it slower than other languages.
If you’re looking to build a dynamic web page, PHP is the programming language you’re looking for. But if you’re looking for a scripting language with more functionalities, likely JS is the better option.
5. Database Integration
Now you might be asking: are databases useful because…? They are helpful in terms of searching, sorting, and filtering information to present to a user. For example, if you’re trying to build an e-commerce, analyzing the data can give you information about how the users interact with the products.
Here’s a table that sums up the main differences among both programming languages:
|Server-side scripting language||Client-side scripting language|
|Back-end||Back-end and Front-end|
|Multithreaded language||Single-threaded language|
|Builds high-level interactive web pages||Builds user-friendly creative web pages and other software products|
|Slow performance||Fast performance|
|Best for e-commerce and other CMS websites||Best for SPAs|
|Database integration||Doesn’t have database integration|