Web Design & Development Guide
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
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.
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
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
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
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 Copy Editors and Web Content Creators are different from Web Developers.
World Wide Web Consortium