Popular Web Languages and How We Use Them
Written by: Jared Schneiderman
October 20, 2015
Behind all the beautiful websites you see on the Internet (including the ones in our portfolio) are a variety of web programming languages. These languages tell the servers, browsers and other web-related hardware/software how to behave and ultimately create the web that we interact with. Different languages have different uses – some are used to render colors and layouts, while others interact with the back-end data. Some even do both!
So which languages are we using to build your business’ website? Read on to find out.
Actually, HTML is technically not a programming language, but is instead a markup language. HTML is used to structure websites using building blocks called elements. Elements come in a variety of types, including headings, paragraphs, images, and line breaks. They are written as a pair of tags with defining content between them. For example, the text below is split into a heading <h2> and a paragraph <p> with the help of HTML:
<p>He’s a really cool dude.</p>
HTML allows us to build out a framework that will support the entire website. But raw HTML is rather ugly, which is why you need…
CSS (Cascading Style Sheet) is what makes our websites look good. It takes the information provided by the HTML document and applies colors, positioning, sizing, and other styling. CSS separates the presentation of a document from its content, which provides improved control and flexibility. Here is an example of what CSS looks like. In this particular case, CSS is used to define the font family (Comic Sans) and size (24px) for h2 headings.
font-family: ‘Comic Sans’, sans;
The first two languages we mentioned can be categorized as client-side languages, which means they run in your browser. PHP, on the other hand, is a server-side language that runs on a web server. PHP is an Object Oriented Programming language (OOP) primarily used to dynamically generate HTML by interacting and processing information stored in a database. Unlike HTML and CSS, which only allow the one-way presentation of information, PHP can also allow a user to interact with the underlying data. This can take the form of search queries, contact forms, or user profile updating. Here is what PHP looks like to display a welcoming message:
<?php echo ‘Hey, what’s up?!’; ?>
These are just some of the web programming languages used to build the sites you see in our portfolio. Each serves its own purpose, from processing database information to displaying photos in a gallery. To find out how we can use these languages to build a beautiful site for you, give us a call or contact us online.