Node js vs PHP – The Battle of the Backend | Which One to Learn in 2019?

Node js vs PHP – The Battle of the Backend | Which One to Learn in 2019?

Node js vs PHP: Web Development – it has gained a lot of demand and popularity in the field of computer science and engineering. From social networking to IOT (Internet of Things) projects, the web applications are the vehicle behind the scene. In this article, we are not comparing any language or their benchmark performance but we will discuss which one is better for different situations and which one is currently gaining its popularity because of efficiency and performance. At the end of the article, you will get an idea that which one you should learn in 2019 in between Node Js vs PHP.

The era of web development started immediately after the entry of the internet in the digital world. When we say the word ‘Application’, in terms of computer, we know that it is built using one or more programming language. The web applications are the type of applications that run on a browser. The two types of programming languages are used in web applications – Frontend & Backend.

The Frontend is completely dominated by JavaScript – The one and only king of the Frontend. However, the backend has a variety of languages to choose one. Actually, the backend language is chosen to meet some criteria and it depends which types of application it is and how it will perform to make the tasks easy. The most commonly used languages in the backend are – PHP, Java, JavaScript, Python, Ruby, C# etc. But here in this article, we are going to discuss only two aspects of them, PHP & Node js – ‘The old man & young boy‘ and which one you should learn in 2019 to clear out your job opportunities. So, let’s start the battle of the backend – Node js vs PHP.

Node js vs PHP

Most of the time, people want to go in one direction or path present in the web development world. These paths are basically the stacks used with different languages. The Stacks like MEAN, MERN, MEVN are commonly used with node js. MEAN stands for Mongo – The no SQL database, Express – the framework used with Node js, Angular – One of the great frontend framework and the last one is Node. The MERN and MEVN are the same as MEAN except the frontend framework used here are React and Vue js respectively. Except for these 3 stacks, there are also some stacks used with Node Js. But these 3 are the most common to see.

With PHP, the most common stacks used are the MySQL – the SQL Database, Apache server and PHP frameworks like CodeIgniter, Laravel etc. Along with these aspects, any frontend frameworks like React, Vue, Angular etc are can be easily implemented. But here comes the choice, because PHP is a completely different language and all the frontend frameworks are build with pure JavaScript. So, in order to become a complete full stack developer, one should purely perfect on both frontend and backend. Most of the time, Companies are hiring the full stack developer but not only frontend or backend developer. So to become a full stack developer you should perfect on one or more frontend framework along with a backend language or framework. Now, let’s discuss Node JS vs PHP – which is better at when!

Why PHP?

PHP is a very matured language in the world of web. it is older than Node Js and has a really big developer community. There are some really big sites or applications like Facebook, Yahoo, WordPress etc are built on top of PHP. So, you probably got an idea of how powerful it is. As we said above, the most common database system used with PHP is the MySQL database. With the use of PHP frameworks like CodeIgniter, Laravel etc; developers have an option of the rapid development of projects where the time is significant.

PHP is an ideal choice for the applications like Content Management System, any institution or organisation website or sometimes for the social networking site too. The advantages of PHP is its learning curve. This language is really easy to learn because of its simple syntax and straight forward nature.

Why Node JS?

Unlike PHP, the Node JS is not a language. It is a platform designed in pure JavaScript to run JavaScript code in the backend. Alternately, we can say Node JS is the runtime environment for developing server-side applications using JavaScript. It is a great inclusion to the world of web, because one can develop a complete application – including fronend and backend, using only a single language. That’s really great.

Now, you don’t have to spend time on learning multiple languages for frontend and backend. You can do that by learning only a single language – JavaScript. That is the great advantages of Node Js. Developing applications with Node Js is really easy if you have a proper understanding of JavaScript.

Node JS vs PHP - Which is Better at When?

Comparing these two development environments – Node JS vs PHP is not too easy. Because both of them has their own advantages and disadvantages. The PHP is a good choice for the CMS like systems where the Node JS is a better choice for developing any real-time applications. Some great web applications like PayPal, Uber, Netflix and LinkedIn etc are completely based on Node Js.

Because of the asynchronous non-blocking code execution nature of the Node Js, it is probably the best choice for any real-time systems like – chatting system, video or voice calling system, MAP navigation system etc. It is more powerful than PHP when it comes to handling more request at a single time. Since performance and time are the two most important factors of any real-time system, Node JS is considered as the best choice among all other server-side solutions.

Node JS vs PHP - Which One to Learn in 2019?

Node Js vs PHP – Which one to learn in 2019? – That’s a really hard question to answer! Both of them has their own advantages and both are very matured. The straight forward answer is – if you want to go for wordpress (used by more than 60 million websites) development then learn PHP. If you want to go for some real-time application, Payment processing application or IOT application then go for Node js.

But in the end, I have to mention one important thing that Node Js is gaining its popularity day by day and all other traditional backend languages like PHP or Java are losing its popularity. The best example we can see here is the PayPal. Originally it was developed in Java- I mean JSP (Java Server Pages) in the backend. But when PayPal gained its popularity, It has to handle a large number of transactions request at an instant. But Java Can’t handle a large number of request at a single time. The best solution they found is Node Js and hence they migrated PayPal to Node Js.

So, in 2019, it will be a better idea if you go for Node Js. Along with Node js, the frontend frameworks – React, Angular, Vue and the no SQL database- MongoDB are also in very high demand. So, in 2019 you should consider these stacks with Node js to make yourself job ready!

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Debarshi Das

Debarshi Das is a passionate blogger & full-stack JavaScript developer from Guwahati, Assam. He has a deep interest in robotics too. He holds a BSc degree in Information Technology & currently pursuing Masters of Computer Application (MCA) from a premier govt. engineering college. He is also certified as a chip-level computer hardware expert from an ISO certified institute.

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