Django Vs Laravel: Which framework to choose in 2018?

Django Vs Laravel

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Despite the popularity and the rising demand for mobile development, web development has been getting a tremendous amount of attention and the technologies are evolving quite rapidly. Javascript’s skyrocketing popularity brings a lot to the table, especially with the rise of new development concepts like Progressive Web Applications, Accelerated Mobile Pages, and Single Page Applications. However, things started to get more complicated, especially for young developers who are just getting started.

The sheer amount of available technologies to choose from, the different functionalities they provide, the differences in each one of them and the fact that there’s no holy grail in web development, nor a one solution fits all, all of this makes it quite scary to embark on a learning journey.

This is why we’ll attempt to demystify the process and shed some light on these different technologies here. Two common technologies in the web development world are Django and Laravel, which are back-end development frameworks.

But let’s slow down a second, and talk about what a framework is.

Frameworks

Frameworks are software abstractions. Abstractions are core concepts devoid of complexities and details. We actually deal with abstractions in our everyday life, not just in software. For example, if you want to drive your car, you don’t need to understand the thermodynamics of the engine and the energy cycles inside or even the complex mechanics of the car, you simply need to steer the wheel.

The benefit of using such abstractions in software is the fact that it helps young developers get into the game quickly and use the generic tools created by professional developers to their own need and hence they won’t have to reinvent the wheel on every single function that they might have.

Two famous software abstractions are Libraries and Frameworks. Libraries are a group of methods/objects that produce a certain functionality, and that you might use however you see fit, there’s no one way of using it. Frameworks, on the other hand, are stricter structures, that function as the skeleton of your application.

Frameworks help you skip the hassle of developing the low-level infrastructure and get right to the business logic of your application which results in a neater and more professional application.

There are fundamentally two categories  of frameworks in web development:

Front-end frameworks

front-end frameworks address the client side development problems and mainly focus on CSS or JavaScript. Nowadays JavaScript frameworks like Vue.JS and Angular are the norm for developing web applications.

Back-end frameworks

Back-end frameworks are responsible for the server side logic implementation. The magic that takes place under the hood and brings your website together. How to deal with data, store data, how to manage responses and so on. There are a few core functionalities of back-end frameworks that we need to understand.

Routing: when your server receives a request, it has let a certain resource or a certain action handle it. If you visit mywebsite/products then the products controller should respond with the appropriate resource and so on.

Templating: Assuming you don’t use client-side frameworks like Angular and Vue.JS then you to make the views and fill them with data. The view is basically the page that the user sees on his browser, templating allows you to dynamically fill the page with data according to the data passed by the controller.

Note that there are many other design structures each of which has its own way of dealing with the view and its data.

ORM: ORM stands for object-relational mapping, which is the layer between your model and database that acts as a virtual object database.

There are other features as well, such as security, caching, scaffolding and creating resources and so on.

Django

Django is an MVT or a model view template framework built with python. It’s a free and open source framework that encourages rapid development and helps developers write efficient cleaner code. It’s quite a powerful framework and it’s used by some of the greatest enterprises in the world as their back-end infrastructure. These companies include Pinterest, Udemy, NASA, and Instagram.

Laravel

Laravel is an MVC or model-view-controller framework built with PHP which is one of the most famous languages of the web. It’s also a powerful framework used by 9GAG, UNION, Toyota Hall of fame.

Django vs Laravel Comparison

Let’s compare Django Vs Laravel on various parameters:

1. Code

Let’s take a look at some basic routing code written in both languages. At the first glance, you can notice that Laravel’s code is quite intuitive. Django’s code, on the other hand, seems rather complex, that’s because it uses regular expressions in its routing process, which are not the easiest thing to use, especially with beginners.

Ex: Page Route Declarations in both the languages:

Php:

<? php Route:get('/', function() { return view('posts.index'); }); Route:get('/posts/create', function() { return view('posts.create'); }); ?>

Python:

urlptterns = [
    #ex: /polls/
    path('', view.index, name='index'),

    #ex: /polls/5/
    path('', view.detail, name='detail'),
    #ex: /polls/5/results/
]

2. Community

Django’s community is much larger than Laravel’s since it’s relatively more mature and has been here for a while. Django has almost 3x times the number of contributors that Laravel has, which means that if you ever get stuck at some point, somebody will get you out for sure.

But that doesn’t mean Laravel’s community isn’t helpful, in fact, Laracasts is a community educational resource for Laravel with hundreds of videos on how to get started with Laravel and how to achieve different tasks. It’s actually one of the things that might draw a beginner to the framework.

3. Learning Curve

Learning curves a little mythical since it depends on the individual. If you’re comfortable with Python’s syntax to a good measure, then Django should be fairly easy to pick up. It’s supposed to be developer-friendly and should not take long to learn.

Laravel is said to have a steep learning curve, but with tools like Laracasts and the good documentation, it should not be hard at all to pick up the framework and master the PHP language right along.

4. Performance

Laravel and Django were tested head-to-head in 2018 for JSON serialization and since python’s quite a speedy language it won by a landslide difference. Django performed 69k JSON responses/second while Laravel was at a humble 8kresponses/second. In terms of speed, Laravel doesn’t compare with Django, unfortunately.

5. Security

The world of the web is quite a hostile environment, with attacks and vulnerabilities being exploited all the time, this is why frameworks need to take measures against different attacks, whether SQL injections or cross-site-scripting. Django takes security quite seriously and helps developers avoid the common mistakes of web development and implement some security best measures. While Laravel does also cover the basics of security it doesn’t live up to Django’s security level. That’s why, for example, NASA uses Django for their website.

6. API

You might not be interested in all the functionalities that a back-end framework has to offer and would rather build a client-rich application with a RESTful API. The beautiful thing about Laravel is that it comes with built-in support for API building, as the queries return JSON by default. Django doesn’t come with this built-in feature and you’d have to use a library to work around it and implement the same feature.

To Wrap up:

Technology Django Laravel
Technology type MVT framework built with python MVC Framework built with PHP
Security Highly secure for enterprise level applications Implements basic security features
GitHub Stars 43,384 34,292
Learning Curve Fairly easy to pick up Steep learning curve
Performance Quite fast Relatively slow
Number of websites 205,106 121,173
Front-end Support Quite complex to tie up a front-end JS framework with Django Supports Vue.JS out of the box

Keep in mind that these frameworks support big websites, so there’s no wrong choice to make. It all depends on the software requirements you have and your design. Also, back-end frameworks are quite similar at their core, so it’s not so hard to transition from one framework to another if you feel like working with another framework.

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2 Comments, RSS

  1. Mubashar September 11, 2018 @ 7:48 pm

    Can you please share a link to the test you mentioned in Point 4. Performance.

    • Hackr Team

      Hackr Team September 12, 2018 @ 10:48 am

      Sure, we have added the link to the test in the performance section. Thanks for pointing this out.

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