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Top 2 PHP Frameworks for Web Development

| Web Development | No Comments

Oh my, i love web development. Creating a complete new world, with loads of functionalities, lots of categories, different information by different queries, and the complex problems that i enjoy solving, makes it the perfect job for me. I do not ever remember being frustrated (except for a problem that does not surrender to my superior thinking skills) while doing web development. Is just me when 5 stacking up complex lego structures, but with the text editor and the LAMP Server. I love creating e-commerce websites, web applications, personal blogs, tech blogs, Q & A websites, infomecials.

And i love having my job made easier for me so i can finish my task much faster. This is where the PHP frameworks come in to my rescue and take the daunting task of building the lowest things ( the session handler, the database abstraction, the URL resolver, the REST server, and all that jazz) from my hands so i can concentrate on doing something more important like building an attractive prototype, using my own MAVC design pattern for the view to send information to the controllers via AJAX, write the JavaScript, have the controllers send updates like in Facebook to the user’s view, and generally modifying the user interface / functionality for the better. Oh, and i also forgot, implementing nice features.

So, if the frameworks ease our job, the good ones will do the job of easing our job much better. This makes me reach the conclusion that we must locate the best out of the best.

So let’s start with my favorite one:

1 – Laravel

Laravel is a web application framework with a very elegant syntax design, out of the box ORM for handling the database in a human-readable fashion, and a very beautiful templating engine called blade that replaces the PHP’s ugly alternative syntax.

Having said that, Laravel also is capable of:

  • Loose coupling and dynamic instantiation via the IoC Container
  • Awesome Routing feature to build REST Controllers
  • A default SMTP server configuration that works pretty good for sending messages out of the box

Enough of Laravel, let’s talk about the second favorite of mine:

2 – CodeIgniter

CodeIgniter is the first PHP Framework that i started working with, and is one of the easiest frameworks to set-up, learn, and start working. I remember being able to use it fairly well without having to practice it’s usage (The syntax and the function set is very organized).

The only that annoys me in this framework, is that, i have to write all the models myself (save the function that i made for  doing SELECT WHERE’s with the string from the $column_name argument for my convenience ). It is a pretty tedious process to me (as i tend to deal with an amount of tables in my applications and have to write a separate model for each table in the damn database).

The main features are:

  • Full MVC like the majority of the PHP frameworks out there
  • Very good session library that i use for authentication with no issues
  • Very light and fast if you know how to use it correctly.

This is all about CodeIgniter for now.

Thanks for the read and see you soon!



























2 Of the Best Web Design Prototyping Tools

| Web Design | No Comments

So you are at your home, thinking of a cool design idea, and a great one comes in your mind. But you still have that piece of doubt in your little heart. Will it turn out to be as good as i think it is gonna be? Is the color scheme at the lowest div right? Did i make a mistake when deciding the font for the menu and menu items? And bla bla bla bla bla….

Do not worry your pretty little head about it, because i got the perfect tools for you to solve exactly that problem.

I am sure that prototyping is not a new concept for you ( it is pretty old for users of Adobe Indesign and similar prototyping software) but doing it with twitter bootstrap and foundation, using only your mouse? HTML5 Prototyping is a damn awesome concept that should not be passed off simply because you can create the most realistic mock-up (and with realistic, i mean most close to reality when you are going to be testing your website’s design).

I will give you as an example my favorite one out of the tools similar to this:

1 – Easel.IO

Easel.IO is simply a gift from God in times where you need to pull a fast and beautiful mock-up. It has many fonts that you can choose, you can build a bootstrap or foundation template, you have the option to put widgets from those two UI frameworks, and change their themes.

I especially liked that it had the Proxima Nova font out of the box in it, and i was able to pull a very fast and beautiful HTML5 responsive mock-up (kept myself on using the HTML5 convertor that gives me my mock-up in it’s HTML and CSS state though, because of ugly syntax and class names). It’s an awesome tool.

2 – Moqups

I guess their creators will be able to explain much better than i could explain my own words, here they are:

Moqups is a nifty HTML5 App used to create wireframes, mockups or UI concepts, prototypes
depending on how you like to call them.

Moqups is a google docs looking like HTML5 application, that has a toolbar like in Visual Studio with a list of widgets you can use, widgets for iPhone like the on and off slider if you are building iPhone apps, and thousands of other features like icons that you can add to your mock-up.


So these are the top 2 HTML5 and Graphic prototyping tools that i use. I would suggest the Easel.IO one for trying the web designs that you are doing, and the Moqup one for doing other kinds of design such as UML, database design, and mock-ups for your marketing tactics and stuff unrelated to web design.

But whatever tool you are using, always remember to not have your mockups lack in important details and features!

Prototyping is not enough as you need to be a good designer too, so do not forget to learn good principles too.

Thanks for the read and keep it up!