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Web developer

Web Design & Development Guide

Web developer

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A web developer is a software developer or software engineer who is specifically engaged in the development of World Wide Web applications, or distributed network applications that are run over the HTTP protocol using an HTTP server, a web server, and an HTTP client, a web browser. Web developers can be webmasters who handle website administration and web design as well as web application development or can simply be web application developers. Web developers are formally in charge of web development within their respective organizations or also as freelance software developers.

Tools of the trade

As software developers for the Web, web developers use:

  • Interpreted scripting languages like Python, Perl, PHP, Ruby, VBScript, JScript, etc. as well as some compiled languages like Java,C,C++,C#,VB.Net that are either pre-compiled or just-in-time compiled to create dynamic and interactive server-side web applications.
  • Client-side interpreted scripting languages such as JavaScript (also called ECMAScript), HTML markup, Cascading Style Sheets, and the web browser DOM, to build client-side web applications. Client-side Web Development can also include the utilisation of so-called Rich Client technologies such as Flash, Java, Curl, XUL or others to assemble web applications that in behaviour and function more closely resemble classic desktop applications.
  • Relational Database Management Systems (RDBMS) like MySQL, Microsoft SQL Server, Oracle database, PostgreSQL, etc. as well as the self-describing markup language XML (Extensible Markup Language), to handle data collection from web users as well as storing either public or private data that is shared over networks via the Web.

Setting a standard

Web developers are the gatekeepers of the Web. They are supposed to adhere to the open standards and guidelines created by the W3C (World Wide Web Consortium) when creating any programming for the web. Often, web developers help contribute to these open standards and guidelines through their work on open source projects working to help enhance and debug web-based technologies.

However, because of the fairly low barrier to entry -- freely available development environments (web server environments and development languages), freely available tutorials and information on how to do web development -- more often than not, novice Web Developers do not "adhere to the open standards and guidelines". Additionally, poorly designed or proprietary software tools that don't follow the "open standards and guidelines" create ad hoc and de facto standards which, unfortunately must be followed in order to "make things work". This was especially true during the "Browser Wars" of the 1990s. It is becoming less true as more and better tools enter the marketplace.

Common Misconceptions

As is often misunderstood by the layperson, a Web Developer does not always create graphics, logos, or identity, or create written, video, or audio content for a website, however some do. Web Designers, Web Copy Editors and Web Content Creators are different from Web Developers.

See also

External links


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