In computing, a web application is a client-server computer program in which the client (including the user interface and client-side logic) runs in a web browser. Common web apps include webmail, online retail sales, online auctions, instant messaging services and many other functions. The general distinction between a dynamic web page of any kind and a web application is unclear. Web sites most likely to be referred to as web applications are those which have similar functionality to a desktop software application, or to a mobile app. Single page application are more application- like because they reject the more typical web paradigm of moving between distinct pages with different URLs.
There are two main categories of coding, scripting and programming for creating Web Applications:
I. Client Side Scripting / Coding – Client Side Scripting is the type of code that is executed or interpreted by browsers.
Client Side Scripting is generally viewable by any visitor to a site (from the view menu click on “View Source” to view the source code).
Below are some common Client Side Scripting technologies:
1) HTML (Hypertext Markup Language)
2) CSS (Cascading Style Sheets)
II. Server Side Scripting / Coding – Server Side Scripting is the type of code that is executed or interpreted by the web server.
Server Side Scripting is not viewable or accessible by any visitor or general public.
Below are the common Server Side Scripting technologies:
1) PHP (very common Server – Linux / Unix based Open
Source – free redistribution, usually combines with MySQL database)
2) Zend Framework (PHP’s Object Oriented Web Application Framework) ASP (Microsoft Web Server (IIS) Scripting language)
3) ASP.NET (Microsoft’s Web Application Framework – successor of ASP) Ruby on Rails (Ruby programming’s Web Application Framework – free redistribution)
Advantages of web application development:
1) Web apps are developed with programming languages such as HTML and CSS, which are well known among IT professionals.
2) These apps run on the device’s own web browser through a simple URL.
3) They may also open websites. This means that they don’t require to be updated in the way common apps do. In this sense, it’s the website to which the application is linked that will be updated.
4) On the other hand, a web app’s development time is lower. Hence its lower price.
Disadvantages of web application development:
1) An Internet connection will be an absolute must to run it. Otherwise, you will not be able to browse the website and the web app will be of no use to you.
2) It will also lose visibility as it will not be on display in the stores.
3) In addition, there will be some access restrictions as to certain hardware features of the device it’s running on.