How the heck do I choose the right web development framework?
It’s a question we often get asked, and hey, perfectly legitimate for directors and less-tech savvy managers to ask their dev team. With all the programming languages out there and developers keen to push their own skills and preferences towards a specific language, it’s not always easy to know what framework you should be using for your web application, web service, or mobile API.
Here at Galil Software, we’re pretty well-versed in all the frameworks and programming languages out there, though can completely understand our developers who often want to steer things towards a certain language and framework. Be it Rails, Ruby, PHP, Java, Python, or <insert the name of the hottest new language>, we’ve pretty much seen them all.
To be honest, keeping up with all the latest frameworks and languages can get a bit cumbersome, however what you really should take into consideration is that choosing the programming language for your dev team will probably have a lot more impact on your dev environment and organization in general, rather than worrying about the framework. Since the web framework is basically leveraged by the chosen language, it’s the choosing of the language which should probably be the focus of your decision.
To help you out in choosing the right language and web framework, we’ve come up with THREE heavy-duty considerations to take on board.
Take it away Sam…
Don’t get too hung up on choices – just start building!
First up, we have to say that getting hung up on your decision is largely a waste of time. Oh yes. Let’s be honest, if (and it’s often a big IF) your humdinger of a web app or service truly takes off into the big-time, the chances are high that you’ll need to rethink your technology and rebuild different components, possibly with even more specialized languages. That initial decision of framework and languages way back when will fade into the mists of time…
What’s hugely important is that you build your architecture correctly from the get-go, so that changing a language or framework down the road will be relatively pain free.
HOT TIP: Use the framework that gets your web app or service built the fastest. Worry about the pain of up-scaling and super efficiency at a, hopefully, later time.
Trust your rock star developers
If your star developer (if you don’t have one, hire one) is adamant that your new web application should be built in PHP, and you know he knows his/her stuff, then go with it. Even if you had other languages in mind or were thinking that a newer language seemed to be the perfect fit.
Let the developer’s passion for a specific language guide you. Though not blindly, of course. Ask questions, seek answers to your doubts. Make sure they know the ins and outs of their implementing the chosen language. And then let them go build.
Look for maturity and usage volume
Even after taking into consideration the previous two points, selecting the framework will still rest on your shoulders. And even if you have that rock star developer, we’d highly recommend first checking out other similar web apps or services. What are they using? Is the framework suited to your app/service? Is the framework mature enough and stable enough to indicate it will be around for a while? Check out the framework’s website – is the framework well-documented? And so on…
Do your research (Google, Git Hub, and online forums are your friends). Verify that the framework is used and used well. Check with your developers. If there is a decent community around the framework, there’s a good chance that the good vibes will pass through to your dev team.
And of course, feel free to contact us if you need further advice or assistance regarding web frameworks.