The Best Ten Server Side Programming Languages

The frontend of apps is the interface for users, but this section of an app is not as important as the backend. The success of an app depends more on the backend because it’s the powerhouse that controls the app features and functions. This fact explains why programmers with expertise in a backend developing language are in high demand.

The right backend technology goes a long way in enhancing an app development project. An excellent will enhance development speed, increase app responsiveness, and give room for scaling when the need arises.

However, the procedure for selecting the best backend for a development project can be complicated, since you must choose the most suitable one among the many options out there. 

This article reviews the top 10 server-side programming languages along with a comparative analysis. It will help you in your research for the best server-side programming language for your development project. 

A Quick Overview of App Backend

A quick overview of the backend or server-side aspects of an app will help you understand how server-side programming languages function. 

All apps have a frontend where the app user accesses the program’s interface. However, the backend, which controls the features of the app interface is hidden from the app user. The reason is simple, the app user has no business meddling with the backend, which consists of database functions and other server-side codes.

Introducing Programming Languages

Just like the human brain that analyzes the information we receive; the computer has a processor that interprets and executes the commands. In this scenario, the programming language writes the command, while the server uses a compiler or interpreter to understand the commands and execute them.

The two main classifications of programming languages are high-level and low-level languages.

High-Level Programming Language: This class of language uses a combination of words and syntaxes that are based on human communication languages like English.  As such, high-level programming languages are easier to read and examine. Compilers and assemblers are used to convert the written code to a machine code that the computer processor understands. 

Low-Level Programming Language: This type of language is also called machine language because the computer processors can understand and interpret the language without first passing through assemblers and compilers. 

The top 10 server-side programming language

In this review, we selected two of the best server-side programming languages in the world today. This article reviewed the features and limitations of each platform, so you can make an informed decision while selecting a server-side programming language for your project.

JavaScript

Over the last decade, JavaScript has emerged as the most popular language among developers. It is an excellent language for frontend and backend development. Frameworks like Express.js and Node.js are middleware that allows JavaScript to work as a backend development language. Developers can build backend features with JavaScript using APIS. 

Features

  • Fast Development: Building Apps with JavaScript is faster since the code writes the frontend and backend in the same language.
  • Flexibility: While the Language shows a preference for specific middleware, there are no restrictions. The developer can select any preferred middleware option.
  • Saves Cost: Developers save costs because the same language is used for the frontend and backend development. 
  • I/O Access: Node.js and Express.js allow the developer to create functions for handling I/O-related functions.
  • Opensource: As an open-source platform, JavaScript enjoys the support of an active community and developer team that continuously improves the language.
  • Efficient Coding: JavaScript has in-built features like DOM and hooks that allow a developer to write shorter codes and enhance coding efficiency.

The know more about JavaScript programming, please read the article Top 10 JavaScript Frameworks.

Limitations

  • Coding event-related functions are complex
  • Most JavaScript developers do not have an in-depth understanding of its middleware.
  • JavaScript needs MySQL for database functions, which is more or less outdated.
  • The freedom offered by JavaScript backend frameworks is not preferred by most developers. 

Ruby

A Japanese programmer developed the Ruby programming language in 1990. The language uses familiar syntax, like the ones used by Python and Java. Ruby supports automation, top apps like Etsy and Airbnb use the language to automate their business functions.

Features

  • Productive Language: Ruby is an easy-to-use language and gives access to massive third-party libraries that enhances the productivity of developers.
  • Meta-Programming Features: Ruby offers a meta-programming feature that allows a developer to retrieve data from another program and modify it within the runtime environment. 
  • Excellent Testing Features: Developers can leverage the testing libraries to build quality apps.
  • Reliable and Fast: The fast query processing and object-oriented coding style makes this language reliable and 40% faster in crating apps compared to other languages

Limitations

  • Compared to other languages, the runtime of Ruby is relatively slow.
  • Ruby has a limited number of sources and libraries
  • As a relatively new language, learning it is relatively challenging for existing developers.
  • Debugging Ruby apps is challenging.

The know more about Ruby programming, please read the article Top 10 Ruby Frameworks.

 PHP

After its development in 1994, PHP has grown extensively to become one of the leading server-side development languages in the world today. Over three-quarters of all websites in the world are powered by PHP.

Features

  • Beginner-Friendly: PHP is a multi-purpose programming language. It is easy to learn and deploy, making it an excellent language for new developers. It supports the database backend along with other modern app integration requirements. 
  • Opensource: As an open-source programming language, PHP developers have access to multiple libraries that makes backend development tasks more manageable.
  • Adaptable: PHP can be installed on all operating systems and runs well on all modern browsers.
  • Security Functions: The many security functions like authentication, session management, and lots make PHP an excellent choice for backend development.
  • Community Support: PHP developers can access support from several active communities of PHP developers.

Limitations

  • The popularity of PHP is dwindling due to modern frameworks based on PHP. 
  • While PHP is an excellent backend development language, it has several limitations compared to modern options.
  • The Opensource nature of PHP makes it prone to abuse, misuse, and writing of buggy codes.

The know more about PHP programming, please read the article Top 10 PHP Frameworks.

 Python

Python is a popular, multi-purpose programming language developed in 1991. It offers a simple and easy-to-use backend.

Features

  • Impressive Learning Curve:  New and existing developers can learn python quickly because the coding style is like writing English.
  • Library Options: Developers can leverage multiple libraries to write fewer codes while getting the job done.
  • IoT Coding: Python is an excellent option for coding Raspberry Pi Objects.
  • Embeddable Code: Python Support “Write Once Run Anywhere.” This means you can embed python codes in other programming languages like C++.
  • Inexpensive: Python development is cost-efficient. The package is free and does not require high system resources to run.

Limitations

  • Python is not the best option when you hope to integrate a database into your app.
  • Apps developed in Python need extensive testing and debugging. 
  • Dependence on third-party libraries and frameworks is high.
  • Execution of code becomes painfully slow then the runtime is interrupted. 

The know more about Python programming, please read the article Top 10 Python Frameworks.

Java

Although the Java programming language was developed in 1991, it was released to the public in 1995.  Today, Java is among the best programming language in the world. Java codes can run in all operating systems as well as embedded electronics.

Features

  • Scalable: Java Development Framework makes room for scalability by supporting multiple instances of the server. It is an excellent backend development technology.
  • Easy to Use: Java uses simple syntaxes, making it easy to write, read, update and debug.
  • Multi-Thread Support:  Although Java requires lots of CPU power to function excellently, it supports multi-thread requests on the webserver. 
  • Opensource Libraries: Java developers enjoy a massive number of open-source libraries, allowing them to add multiple server-side features to apps. 
  • Secure: Java has excellent in-built security features. For instance, the Java Virtual Machine checks bytecodes for malicious codes before running them.  

Limitations

  • Writing Java programs can be time-consuming compared to other languages.
  • Java does not support low-level programming.
  • It does not support garbage data collection.
  • Java needs high-end systems to run excellently, making it expensive to implement Java-backend.
  • Compared to modern languages, Java interface objects are bland and lack innovative tools. 

The know more about Java programming, please read the article Top 10 Java Frameworks.

Perl

Perl was developed in the 90s and still works today. This programming language ranks as one of the top-paying languages in a stack-overflow survey.  Today, Perl 5 is often used for automation and prototype development. 

Features

  • Works on Multiple Platforms: Perl can run on the leading operating systems like Windows, Mac, Unix, and Linux. So, developers on all platforms can code in Perl conveniently.
  • Opensource Advantage: Given its opensource design, Perl developers have access to several opensource libraries.
  • Extensible: Perl can use C and C++ libraries and its code runs seamlessly when embedded in C and C++ apps. 
  • Text Processing: Perl features extensive support for text processing socket calls. It maintains an impressive POSIX compliance till today.

Limitations

  • Compared to modern programming languages, Perl apps/processing outcomes are less than stellar.
  • Perl libraries lack several essential features. 
  • Fixing bugs in Perl codes is challenging. 
  • Apps with extensive Perl codes are difficult to manage and often experience execution bottlenecks.
  • Perl apps are not scalable.
  • Developing apps in Perl is painfully slow.
  • As an older technology with a steep learning curve, Perl developers are few, making it costly to hire them.
  • Perl has no free libraries; you must pay copy charges to use them.

C#

C-Sharp is one of the most widely used programming languages for backend development. Many developers prefer this platform for its automation features on the Windows server and execute codes fast. It’s a useful language for building games and command-line interface apps.

Features

  • Cross-Platform Development: Perhaps, the single most fascinating feature for developers is the support for cross-platform development. This means that apps developed on C-Sharp can run on any operating system.
  • Backward Compatibility: C-Sharp is highly compatible with older frameworks. This backward compatibility makes C-Sharp the best option while using older frameworks. 
  • Garbage Collection: the garbage collection feature enhances error-free program execution, code debugging, and reusability. The platform removes classes that are no longer required by the program to optimize the code for execution. 
  • Object-Oriented Programming: Developers on C-Sharp can take advantage of classes and relationships because this language supports the object-oriented programming concept.

Limitations

  • As a high-level programming language, C-Sharp cannot communicate with hardware directly. This is a limitation while programming embedded components. 
  • C-Sharp is somewhat restrictive compared to other modern programming languages because it only runs on Windows and requires .Net Framework. 

C++

This programming language is more or less an extension of the C language. Most of the features of C++ are the same as the C language with several enhancements, the most notable being the support for object-oriented programming.  

C++ is a low-level programming language, which means it can interact directly with hardware components. Although C++ is one of the oldest programming languages, it can be used to develop modern apps with innovative features. 

Features

  • Adaptability:  C++ works with different operating systems and compilers. It is a versatile language for performing various tasks. 
  • Object-Oriented Coding: The support for object-oriented programming allows the developer to use relationships efficiently within the code. This structured programming architecture enhances clean code and code reusability.
  • Low-Level Programming: C++ is used extensively for coding system hardware components because its code can communicate with hardware devices. 
  • Memory Management: C++ apps run efficiently because the platform has an excellent memory management feature. Moreover, the developer can choose how the code access system memory, so the developer can enhance memory management within the code.

Limitations

  • There are no features for automatic garbage data collection. 
  • The fact that C++code can access server hardware is a risk in C++ development. A malicious user can create codes that change hardware functions.

Scala

Scala has a unique programming schema that combines object-oriented programming with functional programming. That is why scala codes are concise. Scala has wide acceptance because it uses the Java Virtual Machine. It has in-built support for static types, making programming tasks more manageable. 

Features

  • Programing with Scala is less stressful because it implements both functional programming and object-oriented programming.
  • Scala is cross-compatible with Java since the two languages use JVM. In essence, Java and Scala codes produce the same result. That is why many developers use Scala for backend development.
  • Concise Code: Scala programmers can achieve much with less coding. This concise coding schema makes it easier to write and update Scala apps.

Limitations

  • Scala uses an uncommon approach towards coding. Therefore it takes a longer time to master how to code in Scala.
  • Most programmers have a background in writing object-oriented codes, combining this technique with functional programming may be confusing to some developers. 

Kotlin

Kotlin was developed in 2011 but came into the limelight when it was integrated with Android Studio for the development of Android apps. It is a viable alternative to Java and its support for cross-platform development makes it famous among developers worldwide. 

Features

  • Achieves More With Less Code: Given the concise coding schema of Kotlin, developers can achieve more with less code. This translates into faster project turnover. 
  • Java Compatibility: Kotling code works excellently with Java, and vice-versa. This means that developers can use Kotlin to write codes to add features to their Java programs.
  • App Management: The procedure for managing Kotlin is simple since it is easy to read and edit as the need arises. Developers can manage Kotlin apps quickly.

Limitations

  • Kotlin has limited primitive types,  making the management of variables within codes challenging and may cause output issues.
  • Functions in Kotlin have primitive types, making it challenging for programmers experienced in other languages.
  • The compilation of Kotlin apps is slower than Java.

A Final Note

New server-side technologies are emerging while existing ones continuously add modern and innovative features to their languages. This article has reviewed the top ten server-side programming languages worldwide. 

Hopefully, this article will make your research into server-side programming languages more straightforward, You can choose the one that aligns best with your app development objectives. Remember that the server-side technology you select plays a vital role in the success of your app.

FAQ

What is a server side programming language?

Server-side programming languages are the technologies used to develop and manage app fiunctions such as data transactions, operation logic, database operations, and lots more. 

What are the top ten server side programming languages?

The best server-side programming languages are Python, PHP, Java, C#, Scala, Pearl, C++, Kotlin, JavaScript, Ruby.


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