Why Use PHP programming in 2021? Its Pros and Cons

Why Use PHP programming in 2021? Its Pros and Cons
Why Use PHP programming in 2021? Its Pros and Cons

Introduction

PHP is one of the most popular scripting languages available today which allows us to build amazing interactive web pages and applications.

PHP programming leads to high-quality immersive experiences on the web and makes it easier for developers as well to create the infrastructure required to provide visually appealing websites and applications that are stable as well as fast. In this article, we will cover PHP in brief and the advantages of arming oneself with this much-renowned option of building web environments with PHP programming. 

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What is PHP?

The term ‘PHP’ is used due to it being an acronym for Personal Home Page which was the name given to its initial release. Since then, as a toolset, PHP has been helping create dynamic websites across the globe. PHP stands for ‘HyperText Preprocessor’ and is one of the best scripting languages available for web pages. Due to its versatility and its fundamental property of being open-source and easy to learn.

PHP is preferred by many students and taken up by many interested programmers. PHP programming resources are easy to find and PHP is being used by many companies currently which further qualifies PHP as one of the most important tools that one can utilize. For instance, heavy use of PHP can be observed in organizations such as Facebook, Lyft, and Wikipedia.

WordPress, a great way for beginners to get introduced to web development is also mostly based on PHP, with a huge chunk of its core software being written using PHP programming.

PHP is similar to JavaScript and is a scripting language that is available for free to be used in various servers such as Linux web servers. PHP was built with the intention of providing a cross-platform and multi-platform alternative to Microsoft’s Active Server Page Technology or ASP which can only be run on Microsoft Windows NT servers.

PHP programming embeds the scripts within the web pages alongside its HTML. PHP is one of the most popular programming languages in the world, with it coming in the top five of every report done by credible organisations. 

 There are many platforms that provide immersive online content to help understand the uses of PHP or for using PHP programming effectively.

How Top Corporations are Using PHP Programming

1. Facebook

Facebook was initially built using PHP by Zuckerberg and Moskowitz with most of its application code being written using PHP programming. PHP sustains highly dynamic content and Facebook is one of the big corporations to have extensively used PHP has inspired an immense number of modern companies to adopt PHP when writing their primary application code.

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2. Wikipedia

Wikipedia is powered by PHP alongside using MySQL/MariaDB to administrate the databases. Wikipedia is a highly immersive website with an extensive database, being one of the most visited websites, fundamentally requiring the rapid speed and responsiveness that PHP offers till Wikipedia decided to switch to HHVM. 

3. Tumblr

Tumblr adopted the incredible customisation options and versatility of PHP7 in 2016, which made the platform faster and more immersive than ever. New language features that PHP promotes, such as scalar type hints and return type declarations went a long way in helping Tumblr, which was already quite popular to grow into a community that is even more stable and interactive. 

4. MailChimp

MailChimp’s infrastructure uses scalable PHP databases in their backend and sends hundreds of millions of emails for its immense number of users.

5. WordPress

It is one of the biggest content hosting and web hosting platforms which actively uses PHP to use databases to access massive amounts of data. PHP fetches the core content from the sources and is capable of representing it in a static HTML form.

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PHP allows the use of multiple pre-loaded interactive UI contents and templates. This allows beginners to use these features to build high quality engaging web pages without any programming experience.

Uses of PHP Programming

There are multiple uses of PHP programming with its main utility being observed in the creation of dynamic web pages and interactive web applications. PHP also allows developers to connect databases more easily and at a rapid pace to help promote a more effective end-user experience and faster web development. Here are a few uses of PHP.

  • Server-side scripting: The output of the PHP programming can be accessed through a web browser and the PHP pages can be viewed from the servers.
  • Command-line scripting: A PHP script can be run or executed without web browsers or servers by just using a PHP parser.
  • Writing web and desktop applications: PHP can even write desktop applications and is highly used in writing web applications.
  • Creating Dynamic Web Pages: PHP is very adaptive and capable of creating dynamic web pages along with the page’s HTML content so it is used globally to create thousands of web pages annually.

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Pros and Cons of PHP Programming

There are multiple pros and cons of using PHP to build web pages. There are many advantages and benefits that PHP offers which involve increasing the interactiveness of web pages and making them more dynamic. But like many other open-source languages, hackers and other developers can manipulate the program codes or take advantage of bugs in the system.

Pros of using PHP programming

  • PHP is versatile and allows integration with databases and various programming languages such as HTML, JavaScript, and CSS. 
  • PHP is a multi-platform programming language and supports cross-platform scripting using multiple OS platforms such as Windows, Unix, Linux, etc.
  • Allows effective storing and retrieval of data with its adaptive nature and support of multiple databases.
  • PHP has support for many valuable plugins and contains various tools which standardize the quality and representation of the content which is also not affected by different platforms or web browsers for the end-users.
  • PHP is one of the fastest scripting languages which allow developers to see the effects of the changes or modifications immediately. In comparison with other scripting languages, it can provide rapid results.
  • PHP does not need to depend on web browsers. It relies on web servers instead to run the applications written in it using PHP programming.

Cons of using PHP programming 

  • PHP is not built to handle errors during handling and is unstable in nature. 
  • PHP programming is hard to maintain and utilize for bigger applications. It is not effective in supporting heavier applications. 
  • PHP is open-source with the codes being easy to investigate and discover. This leads to other developers and end users being able to identify the codes and manipulate the script. This makes it easy for hackers and harmful bugs to illegally access the codes and play around with them. This also allows the bugs, glitches and weak-points in the system can be misused to corrupt or hack into the system. 

Is PHP Programming worth learning in 2021?

Yes, PHP is still worth learning in 2021, with more focus and importance being placed on web applications and web environments which do not require users to install software inside their operating systems and remove the need for end-users to dedicate storage space inside their systems.

PHP is one of the most popular and highly used languages even in 2021, years after its initial release. PHP programming is getting increasingly better with more relevant tools being provided by PHP with recent upgrades to assist the growing need for complex web environments.

Does PHP programming has a future?

While many mistake PHP to be dead, according to PHP classes it has been estimated that about 75% of the websites on the internet use PHP.

This may be because many websites use WordPress and WordPress makes active use of PHP. So, the future of PHP seems far from over. More than anything else, a lot of firms and companies require expertise in PHP programming to power their online existence.

This leads to them investing heavily in their human assets as well as indirectly contributing to the growing requirement of PHP experts and improved PHP infrastructures.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the advantages of using PHP?

The advantages of PHP can be noticed by developers who are involved with building web pages and applications on the server-side, especially on platforms like Linux web servers. PHP is an all-in-one solution to all the scripting needs during the development of a complex immersive web experience.

Why should you not use PHP?

PHP contains many areas where it lacks stability and security, these shortcomings add to the integrity issues that pages or applications built on PHP programming suffer from. These are all main problems that occur from manipulation of codes and misusing of scripts for illegal or unethical purposes.

Does Facebook still use PHP?

Most of Facebook’s core code was initially developed using PHP which was translated into a C derivative using a compiler before being executed. Facebook heavily depended on PHP for this, but due to it being susceptible to being hacked and due to instability issues.

Facebook scaled down the use of PHP programming, and instead started relying on its own implementation of PHP which uses the same ‘Just In Time’ approach, similar to that of PHP and by compiling the codes into an optimised version of C++. Facebook still relies heavily on PHP but enforces a secure environment to remove errors faced during runtime.

Is PHP faster than Ruby?

Out of the two, PHP stands to be much faster and efficient to the language infrastructure it follows. PHP programming is simple and consumes less memory as compared to Ruby which makes web pages built with PHP much easier to scale.

Ruby can sustain the development of heavy web applications and web environments with the use of additional tools but is very complex to modify and maintain. Also, Ruby takes a huge amount of memory and is not fast enough. PHP in comparison to Ruby is much more time-efficient and simple to use.

Key Takeaways

Taking everything into consideration, it will only benefit developers to take up PHP programming and learn this language in more detail. While it may not be that stable, it does help you create an amazing web experience for all users. After all, we know how important websites (and the experience a website offers) are for any business to grow.

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PHP is one of the essential weapons one can arm oneself within 2021 and in the coming years, as we increasingly get more and more involved with the internet and web pages in our daily lives. If you have any opinions on this subject or any queries, please feel free to drop us a comment!