The Anatomy Of A Website

website

Websites, since the inception of the internet, have become one of the primary methods with which we consume content. Websites are what the book, newspaper, or magazine used to be, but only in electronic form. It also helps that websites are scalable and can adjust to whatever screen size they are being viewed on and, in terms of a medium with which we consume content, they are also quite versatile.

A website’s capabilities range from being able to play video and audio, and render text and images. For all their scalability, versatility and ubiquity, a large number of people that consume content on websites still do not know how they work. With this blog post, we hope to enlighten our readers on the intricacies behind how a website works.

A website at its core comprises of three elements: its structural frame governed by Hyper Text Markup Language (HTML), a cascading style sheet (CSS) that governs its stylistic elements i.e. how the website looks, and its interactivity, which is governed by languages like Javascript or PHP.

A proper analogy to how a website works is to think of it as akin to the human body. The structural code to a website, which is governed by HTML can be compared to the skeletal structure of a human. CSS, on the other hand, can be thought of as similar to the instructions that designate things like hair texture, eye color, height, and muscle thickness in a human. In a website’s case CSS determines what the website looks like.

Then comes the interactivity of a website, which is governed by programming languages like Javascript and PHP. The role Javascript plays in the interactivity of a website is akin to the role the brain plays in the human. Javascript, for instance, is responsible for the feedback you get when an event like you clicking on a portion of a website occurs.

Javascript is not the only language that adds interactivity to a website. Even though Javascript has been dubbed as the “programming language of the web,” there are several other programming languages that aid in making a website interactive, some of which we address below.

PHP

PHP is a scripting language, which stands for the recursive acronym for “PHP: Hypertext Preprocessor.” It can be embedded directly into the HTML of a website and is mostly used for processing scripts to help in performing tasks on the website. Websites like Facebook and WordPress use PHP extensively in managing scripts on their site. Unlike HTML, CSS and Javascript, which are processed and rendered in your browser, PHP is actually processed by your server hence it being called a server side language.

MySQL

MySQL is an open source relational database language used to manage databases. As the internet started to take shape, one huge need that arose was where to store and how to retrieve the vast amounts of data people were entering into forms on the internet. MySQL, which gets its name as a result of a combination of “My” from the name of co-founder of the language’s daughter and “SQL” an abbreviation for Structured Query Language, is adept at communicating between a database and the presentation layer of a website.

Ruby On Rails

“Ruby On Rails”(Rails) is another server-side web application framework written in a programming language called Ruby licensed under MIT. Rails, which is governed by the model–view–controller (MVC) framework, provides default structures for a database, a web service, and web pages. Rails encourages and facilitates the use of web standards such as JSON or XML for data transfer, and HTML, CSS and JavaScript for display and user interfacing.

Other Worthy Mentions

Other worthy mentions you will encounter while you browse the web or use web applications, include python, c++ and Perl. In the world of mobile applications, Swift and Objective C are used in building iOS apps while the Java programming language is used in building Android mobile apps.

Final Thoughts

So there you have it. The next time you are at a dinner party and you want to show off your knowledge of web development or app development don’t forget to refer to this mini manual or better yet share this entry with friends and join our quest in making the world a more knowledgeable place.

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The Anatomy Of A Website
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The Anatomy Of A Website
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Websites, since the inception of the internet, have become one of the primary methods with which we consume content. Websites are what the book, newspaper, or magazine used to be, but only in electronic form.
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syntaxNinjas
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Ade Olumofin
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Ade Olumofin

Founder and CEO at syntaxNinjas LLC
Ade Olumofin is the Founder and CEO at syntaxNinjas LLC. He is a graduate of the Viterbi School of Engineering at USC and an avid fan of technology.
Ade Olumofin
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About Ade Olumofin 24 Articles
Ade Olumofin is the Founder and CEO at syntaxNinjas LLC. He is a graduate of the Viterbi School of Engineering at USC and an avid fan of technology.