How useful are web application frameworks? & How do I know which framework would suit me?

framework

For non-technical background people; framework is a bunch of libraries, tools that do common task in web development and it aims to ease the common activities which have to perform in web development. Using appropriate framework is essential for a developer because it saves an important time and efforts for building an app. Most of the applications have a common set of functionality such as handling session data validation etc. and web framework prevent a developer from re-writing every time a same code to create a web app.

The purpose of framework is to allow designers and developers to focus on building an unique feature for their web based projects rather than re-inventing by coding. Framework is specially created to help you boost the performance and efficiency of your web app development task. They are equipped with fascinating features such as templates and session management and database access libraries. Depending on your convenience and task you can select from vast range of framework offered in the market. Each framework can provide you with extended choice of web app features which provides a very less error-prone app. In simple way framework helps in the prototyping, design and implementation stages of the app development lifecycle and also simplifies ongoing maintenance and enhancement of a web app.

Let’s see when you feel need of a web framework:

->When your web app is based on CRUD cases.

->When you need a proper separation of the UI and understanding logic but don’t have time to implement a system.

->When you find yourself having self-made libraries you use in each of your covering user authentication, session and other usual operations associated with creating a web app

->When you are focused to create a CMS in a very short time and you already know the framework

But, how web frameworks are useful?

Actually web frameworks are very useful and in many ways they help web developers to build a web app by providing different functions and features. Following are the aspect which shows how frameworks are beneficial:

>>Saves time:

Biggest advantage of framework is that it reduces time and energy in developing any app because developer doesn’t need to worry about data sanitization, session handling, error handling and authentication logic. Most of these functions are well taken care by the framework. It avoids head scratching and developer can start writing code for an application straight away without wasting more time with those repetitive coding. It doubles up development process and increases productivity.

>>Well organized app:

Developer should not have to worry about managing web directories and files. Things get more organized because frameworks already have a good skeleton structure to use. No need to shuffle of files from one place to other. Framework also offers to separate business logic from the interface files.

>>Flexibility and highly customizable:

If you are a MySQL user and you have been given a postgresSQL database to use for your app, I’m sure you’d have scratch your head to write the web app from scratch, but the advantage of framework help you to not waste time on studying things that don’t really matters. A few tweaks can help you to ship your application from one platform to another. Add-ons, themes, plugins, widgets are all names for things which develop within framework communities and enable further rapid customization on your application.

>>Secure code:

Framework makes developer sure that application using good security measurements because framework itself takes care of it. This is another huge advantage of using framework for web development. You as a developer should not have to worry about hacker who can break your app. Framework makes you feel much secure and better.

>>Say no to re-inventing:

Web framework offers many typical components right out of the box such as, user management functionality- which might otherwise take months to build.

>>Scalable, fast and secure:

Framework are designed to be reused, this leads to quality control on a global scale and so an extremely robust foundation from which to develop your web product from. Such as WordPress; is currently used by over 60 million websites worldwide.

>>Well supported:

Communities of users and developers spring up around web frameworks where ideas can be shared and knowledge can be captured.

>>Reduce development time and cost:

For every particular programming language there are web framework created, each has its pro’s and con’s due diligence should be taken when selecting a framework for your web app taking expert advice if necessary.

>>CRUD:

Frameworks are created to make web development faster and easier. It provides tools to cover the common CRUD cases such as create, read, update, delete. You can find libraries for accessing a database, managing session and cookies, creating templates to display HTML pages and more.

>>Re-use of code:

Framework also promotes the reuse of code. With a good framework you only need to design for instance, a contact form once. Later you can drop your generic contact from code into all your projects and save yourself some time and efforts.

>>Templates system:

Most frameworks either provide a templates system or make it easy to add on own template system so that common chunks of HTML that rarely change. For example: header and footer of your page need only to be written once. Inbuilt templates satisfy many developers with design available to create web product quickly.

>>Easy deployment and maintenance:

Framework based application can be deployed as a web app with windows like functionality. You can support multilingual environment too. With native windows application, user can personalize framework application by rearranging them in many different ways to best fit the way they work. Maintenance is easier because application follow a consistent coding approach, making it easier to understand and maintain the code.

>>Rapid development Boost Productivity:

Almost all the available frameworks are designed to boost productivity of developer by offering an easy-to-use and easy-to-understand generic application framework. Frameworks also support the rapid prototyping, designing, implementation and deployment of commercially focused application.

Code assistants generate much of the code required and together with an expanding library of components, developers can more rapidly assemble powerful application. Components are also shipped for user management, authority management, server management and common code management.

>>Suitable for teamwork:

Many frameworks also help you create environment for teamwork. You can let your designers work on the views, database expert work in the models, and let the smart programmer build reusable libraries and plugins etc also you can let someone build unit tests because they come with tools for that too. For example: PHP frameworks.

How to select right framework?

There are many programming languages and so as frameworks available to build a web app but the truth is all frameworks are really just a set of helpful libraries they are building to be leveraged by a particular programming language. When selecting framework for your programming language you will see there are many frameworks available therefore putting strong criteria are necessary as described below:

>>Requirement list:

Before you start searching for a suitable framework you will need to make a list of requirements about web application and make sure whether a framework is suitable for that purpose

>>License:

Licenses are important simply because they can have a significant impact on your application. Before you start developing using framework, check out what kind of license the frameworks falls under. While most licenses are pretty liberal to work with and allow you to create commercial application and some of them are not so generous. Find out if license allows you to distribute your application commercially or not.

>>Popularity:

Choose the framework which is well known, recognized and complete which includes good ideas, the numbers and quality of plugins etc

>>Sustainability:

While choosing a framework make sure that it will be able to keep up with you for the duration. This simplifies both the maintenance and upgrading of your application

>>Techniques:

TO avoid becoming trapped in complexity it is always beneficial to choose an interoperable solution; one that respects best practice in terms of development.

>>Security:

While choosing a framework to minimize risk make sure it is capable of ensuring security functions such as XSS management.

>>Documentation:

Well explained, detailed documentation draws in the power users and preacher who then brings on more people and it is the key to its success. With a bad written, confusing document people are going to walk off confused mind and annoyed.

>>Community support:

Choose the framework which has a friendly community which helps developers new to platform. Communities behind framework can make or break framework. More mannered the communities are more users attracted towards the framework.

>>Core libraries:

While choosing a framework you as a developer make sure that library you have chosen must be in such as that it frees you from writing repetitive code but still provides a way for you to mess with it if you need more features and controls.

>>Software pattern:

Almost every framework uses the MVC pattern, which helps you to keep data: the model, the logic, the controller and the user interface, the view, separate from each other. This lets you write a better code which ultimately gives you in better app.

>>Unit testing:

Frameworks are definitely surplus if lets you write units tests.

Frameworks such as cakePHP, zend includes code igniter and allows you to create custom tests to check the critical parts of your application.

>>Bug fixes:

Choose the framework which is not inactive. You don’t want a hacker to tell you that security vulnerability exists in the framework through a page he hacked on your site. You’d rather hear that from the framework developers hopefully with a link to a patch to the issue.

Choose a framework which update often, is open about the bugs it finds and more importantly fixes the bugs as soon as possible.

>>Ease of installation:

While choosing a right framework for web development ease of installation also plays a very important role.

A framework can be a problem if one has to run through a number of steps just to get it installed and working. This will also bring a problem once the application is ready, tested and needs to be deployed.

Choose a framework which lets you develop and running as rapidly as possible. A framework with ease of installation and deployment adds satisfaction to developer’s life.

>>Easy extension and availability:

Choose a framework which you can be re- purpose it into a component suitable to reuse in your other application or even better release it to the general public so they can make use of it in their application.

Choose a framework which allows you extended the framework easily with minimal fuss.

While choosing a framework, also remember the availability of plugins. Choose the extension by its quality not by numbers

>>DB abstraction & ORM:

While choosing a framework, select the one which will allow your web application to become database agnostic. So, you’ll never have to care about the database parts in case you need to switch out database if your framework takes care about it. And the other thing you should be concern about is ORM. ORM allows you to express data as an object and see how it relates to other objects. Such as, Ruby, cakePHP, Django has ORM capabilities.

>>Hasting requirements:

All the web developers want to build an application on cutting edge platform but it is also depend on client’s budget and demands. So, it may be out of clients given budget to get a dedicated host to place application on you’ll have to make with shared hosting with normal modules and settings.

>>Learning curve:

When selecting a framework remember to choose one that has the smallest possible learning curve. Some frameworks are flexible when it comes to naming conventions, directory structure and what not’s while others are very strict throwing up errors at tiniest mistakes.

 

Choosing a framework must not be taken lightly; it is a long-term commitment. Make sure that you make the right selection!