The backend of a web application is an enabler for a frontend experience. An application’s frontend may be the most beautifully crafted web page, but if the application itself doesn’t work, the application will be a failure.
The backend of an application is responsible for things like calculations, business logic, database interactions, and performance. Most of the code that is required to make an application work will be done on the backend. Backend code is run on the server, as opposed to the client.
This means that backend developers not only need to understand programming languages and databases, but they must have an understanding of server architecture as well. If an application is slow, crashes often, or constantly throws errors at users, it’s likely because of backend problems.
Backend development is not all ones and zeros though. Much like frontend development, backend development has a human aspect to it as well. Since most of the code for an application is written on the backend, it should be easy to understand and work with. Most backend languages – like Ruby and Python – have standardized styles and idioms that make reading and writing code more efficient and enjoyable.
The technical skills required to be a backend web developer commonly include:
Ruby – a programming language created to be fun and efficient. Ruby syntax is easy to read, even for people who don’t know Ruby. Ruby was thrust into the mainstream thanks to Rails, which is a framework (built with Ruby) for building web applications. Ruby on Rails is one of the most popular web development tools for small businesses and startups. Companies like Twitter, Hulu and Github all started and / or still use Ruby on Rails in some capacity. Ruby can be used to code business logic, calculate data and distribute servers for better performance.
Python – much like Ruby, Python is known in part for its readability. A popular web development framework – named Django – also makes Python a popular choice for building web applications. Dropbox was built with, and still uses Python to run much of its server-side code. Python can be used for everything Ruby can. To use Python or Ruby depends on your skill set, the communities you’re exposed to, and your development team.
SQL – a universal database query language. SQL is used to interact with databases, which are a part of every backend web application. No matter what language or framework you choose to build your web application, you will likely use SQL, or some abstraction of it, to interact with the database.
In 8Volution, we do customized backend application to fit your business need.