Website Technology Trends

How do you make choices of what technology, platform, programming language you want to use for your website project? Do you consult your IT? Do you listen to buzzwords flying around? Do you research what your site needs based on your business model, anticipated content, traffic, update process? Are you picking from your current web host options? Is it completely random decision, or you just don‘t make any decision here, leaving it to your selected web agency, developer or even art director?

Here is some statistical rundown of website technology trends today.

Choice of Server-side Programming Languages:

These define the computer instructions which are used to write programs that perform some task, e.g. composing a web page.

78% of sites use php, further 21% use Next in trends is Java with 4% use, then ColdFusion and Perl, each around 1%, followed by Ruby on Rails with 0.5% of all sites, and Python with 0.2% sites.

Adjectives used to describe Python typically include fun, easy to use, and a good learning tool – but ultimately there’s very few real-world Python web applications.
Most web servers do not support Ruby out of the box, so unless you’re able to configure your own server, you need to use a specialist hosting service.
Perl used to be a major in web programming but has since been relegated to mostly just text-processing applications. It’s incredibly fast at processing text, but not of much use on the modern Internet. Often used by hackers though., a Microsoft language, is very popular in corporate environments and almost nowhere else. And the king of most web programming is php.

Interesting that PHP is used not for innovation, but for providing stable platform for wide use of systems based on it. Six months after php latest release – version 5.4 is used by less than 1% of all PHP sites. Most of the websites only upgrade to the next version when forced to do so by their web host, due to discontinued support of some of the oldest versions.

Cold Fusion (developed by Adobe Systems) popularity is slowly eroding. It is used more by high traffic sites than low traffic sites. 78% of all websites that use ColdFusion additionally use another server-side language , mostly ASP.NET.

Choice of Client-side programs:

These are executed within a web browser in order to directly interact with the user. Examples of client side languages are: JavaScript, Java, Flash, Silverlight. JavaScript is used by 92% of sites. Usage of Flash has fallen more than 4% – to 22.7% since last year. Many sites use more than one client-side program.

Javascript is the most prolific on any of interactive webpages. It’s a scripting language that’s run locally on the user’s browser, allowing webpages to respond to user interactions such as clicking on elements and timing events. If there’s something interactive on a site, and it isn’t Flash – it’s more than likely Javascript, not to be confused with Java.

Choice of Content Management Systems:

69% of all sites do not use any CMS.
The most popular CMS is WordPress, used by 17% of all sites (market share 54.4% of all CMS). Joomla and Drupal are used by about 2.5% of all sites (makes up for 9 and 7% respectively of all CMS).
Blogger is used by 1% sites. Expression Engine, osCommerce, PrestaShop, SharePoint, Yahoo small business, ezPublish and Tumblr make each about 0.2-0.1% of sites.

By country – Americas, Europe, India, Indonesia, Australia are using WordPress, while African countries, Venezuela, Bolivia, Ecuador and Caribbean, as well as two European countries – Greece and Bosnia are using Joomla.
China is shown as using Discuz! CMS the most -it has 49% share of chinease market, but not used much outside of China.

Drupal is used most in Belarus, Jordan, Honduras and Namibia. It is also the most popular CMS on .edu and .gov sites. SharePoint is used most in Middle East countries, and on .mil domains.

Blogger ranks 5th overall and is the second most popular CMS system in several countries, for example India. Typo3 ranks 6th overall, and is very popular in German speaking countries, but it ranks only second behind WordPress in Germany, Austria and Switzerland.

Social widgets:

68% of sites are not using any social widgets. The most popular social widget is Facebook, used by 19% of all sites, followed by 14% of Google+, 9% of Twitter, 7% of AddThis/ShareThis combined, and 1.3% of LinkedIn, StmbleUpon, Pinterest and Digg each.
Pinterest popularity rose from 0.7% to 1.2% of all sites in just 3 recent months.

All statistical information above is quoted from the, as of 20 Sep, 2012.

What is the newest in web technologies?

For one, Google has Dart, its new programming language for building web applications with simplicity, efficiency, and scalability in mind.

In the area of design, a traditional Design mockup → Coding process of creating websites is becoming obsolete. Photoshop/Fireworks mockups cannot reflect controls, states, hovers, behaviour of tablets, smart phones and all different viewports of current devices. Requesting true-to-the-pixel implementation of a rigid design misses the point of User Experience and the way websites work today. We can’t simply create more mockups as we design for more screens. As Smashing conference (Sept 2012) argues, the Style Guides are the new Photoshop. They are talking about the creation of clear, semi-automated, self-updating style guides, instead of PSDtoHTML process.

New approach to Content Management Systems is also needed. More capable WYSIWYG apps simulating Word are not the answer. Content editors, when they apply their own styles during content updates, break not only website’s overall design, but also how it behaves on a variety of devices. CMS has to be smarter to guide content editor to stay on the right path.

Lots of important points to think about and coordinate when you build your web business…

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