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Re: OT: Server side scripting languages comparison

On Mon, Aug 19, 2002 at 10:50:44AM +1000, Craig Sanders wrote:
> On Sun, Aug 18, 2002 at 12:47:54PM +0100, Shri Shrikumar wrote:
> > Does anyone know where I could find a good and *fair(ish)* comparison
> > of the different server side scripting languages on the web ?
> i haven't seen any comprehensive comparisons, but i've used and dabbled
> with a few.
> IMO, the best around is HTML::Mason running under mod_perl, a very nice
> component based system for embedding perl code in html pages.  it works
> well with common perl modules (like Apache::Session for session
> management).
> see http://www.masonhq.com/ for details.
> note, however, that if you're on a shared server (e.g. a virtual host)
> then mod_perl is not a good or safe solution.  malicious or incompetent
> code from other users can access your code or variables and even bring
> down the entire server.  fortunately, HTML::Mason can be run as straight
> CGI or with SpeedyCGI (speedyCGI is a nice compromise between the speed
> of persistent perl processes and security)

the bigest problem with perl based solutions is ...perl. Perl is great
provided a) you already know it well, b) you never need to fix it. Anyone
new to scripting languages should probably not start on perl if they can
help it. At first it will confuse and frustrate you, and eventualy render
you indispensable as the only person in the company with half a chance of
decrypting all the perl code you've written.

Not wanting to start a language war... all popular languages are good and
vise-versa... for their particular task. Everyone should learn them all. I'm
not convinced anything big is perls particular task... but quick and dirty

> if you like python, Zope is a pretty good system.  it's a lot more than
> just a server-side scripting language, though.  it's a complete
> integrated web application environment.  very nice if you like that kind
> of thing.

Python is a bit more of a pain than Perl for quick-n-dirty stuff, but it
scales better, and I've found it much easier to learn. Zope has a whole
extra learning curve of it's own that is probably worth it, but doesn't
apply much to anything else.

There are things like mod-python for apache and a few other Python solutions
that sprung up in responce to Zope's "integrated differentness".

> finally, PHP isn't too bad (except that in my experience it is very
> fragile, prone to breaking on upgrades).  i personally don't see any
> advantage in it over perl, quite the opposite in fact. the language
> syntax is very similar...IMO, it "feels" like a clumsy perl.  it is
> easier to get up and running than HTML::Mason (no need to write a
> handler script), but IMO that's not as important as what the language is
> capable of and what modules etc are available.

php is very popular for this application, so the support is good. It's
syntax is a bit C-ish so if that's what your familiar with, it should be OK.

there are a whole swag of php based site frameworks now with varying degrees
of enthusiastic followers. Because php support is almost standard on most
webhosting services, it is the defacto Open Source standard used by most
projects on sourceforge etc.

ABO: finger abo@minkirri.apana.org.au for more info, including pgp key

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