PHP, a server-side programming language, has been around for over 25 years. It tends to provoke strong opinions from developers today. There is always a debate about PHP's status as a programming language or tool. According to the Stack Overflow annual survey, PHP is now 8th among the most used programming languages. This is true. Yet, PHP is still used by almost 80% of websites and powers major platforms such as WordPress and Facebook. What gives?
Why is PHP still so popular?
PHP (Hypertext Processor) is a scripting language that can be used for creating dynamic and interactive websites. It was one of the first server-side languages to be embedded in HTML. This made it possible to add functionality to web pages and not have to call external files for data. The language has been used over the years with frequent upgrades (version 8.0 was released in November 2020). These updates add new features and unlock new capabilities.
Although it's not the most popular language these days, there are key PHP benefits that will help you understand why it is still important for web development.
It is easy to learn and use. A single PHP file can be used to create a website. Even if you don't have any previous web development experience, it is easy for anyone to do so. PHP is simpler than many languages because it has a simple syntax and commands that are easy to understand. Furthermore, PNM Group is a Digital Marketing Agency Toronto that provides digital marketing services! Contact us today to transform your digital marketing goal!
It is open-source and therefore free. It is easy to install and can be used quickly. Open access is available to many PHP frameworks such as Symfony and Laravel. This feature is attractive to companies because it reduces the cost of web development.
It's versatile: One of the major benefits of PHP is that it is platform-independent, meaning it can be used on Mac OS, Windows, Linux and supports most web browsers. It supports all major web servers. This makes it simple to deploy on other platforms and systems at a minimal cost.
PHP enjoys strong community support. It is a well-known scripting language and has a loyal community. Numerous tutorials, FAQs, and tips are available to assist new PHP developers. They also provide regular updates to allow the language to push the limits of what it can do.
It's quick and secure: These are two things every company wants for their website or applications. PHP is fast and efficient because it uses its own memory. This makes it a strong competitor in speed, especially when you are using newer versions. Although there have been some concerns about PHP security in the past, it is still a valid programming language. Because PHP is so popular and has large community support, there are many frameworks and best practices that can be used to fix vulnerabilities and prevent cyberattacks.
It can be connected to databases easily: PHP allows you to securely connect with any type of database. This allows developers to choose the best database for their applications.
It has been tested and proven: PHP code has been used in real-world environments for over a quarter-century. Developers can now trust the language because they have fixed the main bugs. Many frameworks and tools have been developed over time. This makes PHP web development safer, more efficient, and more effective.
It's not easy to find legacy code: While this isn’t necessarily a benefit of PHP, it can be a significant consideration when there are so many websites that have been built with PHP. It is easier to update in one language than to rewrite everything in another. Even though some developers might prefer another language, this helps PHP to endure. This legacy effect makes it easier to find PHP developers for your company. However, as we've written before, you need to ensure they have the right skills.