So, you are here because you’ve explored the software market, came up with the idea, and now reached a crossroads. Is Django an ideal choice to develop your app?
Today, I’ll share the top 10 facts to know about the framework before addressing a reliable Django development company. Jumping ahead, I’d like to say that I found it hard to see any demerits. But let’s have a closer look, shall we?
A short introduction to Django
Back in 2005, while working for the Lawrence Journal-World, two programmers agreed to create an application for publishing news online. To embody the idea, they built a publicly available Python-based framework.
Today, the framework goes under the name of “Django”. It’s the set of components to ensure quick development — the reason that predetermined the framework’s popularity. To date, Django is a choice for building any web applications, however, it primarily works for complex database-driven ones. With this framework, you can build:
- Financial platforms
- Custom CRM systems
- Collaboration software
- Shopping platforms
- Booking engines
- Emailing systems
- Analysis tools
- Document management systems
As Django appeared in 2005, you may question whether it’s still up-to-date. My answer is yes. Major organizations keep using this framework and invest in their development (e.g. Mozilla, Pinterest, Instagram, Quora). But let’s go back to the top 10 facts to know about Django.
#1 Django is stable
Choosing a stable framework is the key principle behind crafting a successful web application. Django is on the list of stable frameworks with multiple enhancements and continuous development.
The very first version was released in 2005, but Django has had many stable releases since that time. Successful companies — Instagram, Mozilla, and Pinterest — have been using this framework for years. They have weathered considerable traffic spikes to over 50,000 hits per second — a sign of the framework’s stability.
Currently, Django 2.1.7 is the latest stable release that works with Python 3.7. Many developers and supporters work with this version. Django 2.1.7 is winning popularity for allowing to get very quick results in developing a web application.
#2 Django scales
“Scalability” is the ability of applications or networks to expand for handling a growing amount of work. Consider this ability when you’re building an app. The app starts small but as it grows larger your task is to avoid the need to rewrite it. You will carry out this task only by choosing a scalable framework.
There are numerous scalable frameworks, so why do developers go with Django? The framework:
- Progressively scales from a low to a high number of users
- Has long-term support for security patches and bug fixes
- Has modular components that you can replace on demand
I would say that Django scales exceptionally and handles even the heavy lifting of an application. You don’t need to be a software engineer to know that. Just have a look at websites running on this Python-based framework.
#3 Django is fast
Python is popular for being a speedy programming language. Naturally, Python frameworks are fast. When talking about how fast Django is, I usually mention two aspects. Firstly, it’s fast to learn which means you’ll find many specialists to develop your application. Secondly, it’s fast when it comes to crafting a project. This fact makes the framework a perfect solution if you’re focusing on deadlines.
The great speed results from the framework’s multiple built-in features. They allow crafting an app for any industry. While using Django, a developer does several iterations at a time and doesn’t have to start from scratch. That motivates programmers to reuse codes for different projects, thus reducing the time for development.
#4 Security is Django’s priority
Django’s template system responds to all vulnerabilities and protects against most major attacks. The system, on the whole, is out-of-the-box which means that it’s easy to set up, convenient, and sleek. With Django, you can prevent major and minor security issues:
- In-built ORM is for SQL injection protection (however, raw queries may take place).
- The template system escapes variabilities (except for those marked as “safe”) and ensures cross-site scripting (XSS) protection.
- Django detects cases of unauthorized content requests (clickjacking protection).
- With cross-site request forgery (CSRF) protection it prevents attackers from executing malicious actions in the server.
Django covers all the loopholes by default and promptly releases new security patches. But casual users can hardly feel it.
#5 Django has packages
Firstly, we talked about this framework as a “batteries included” one. Then, (all of a sudden) I want to use extras and search for additional packages. What for? With these packages, you don’t need to rewrite code for common tasks and can implement all kinds of features. Thus, you save time.
How to check available packages or extras? Go to djangopackages.org and pull up the categories to see useful statistics. Or go to awesome-django.com to check out the packages list based on the editors’ opinions.
A good way to find the packages that fit your project is by looking at popular starter templates. You can also check successful open-source projects at GitHub.
Most packages aren’t complex. Their functionality is easy to re-implement in 2 or 3 hours. Some packages share similar functionality. With a little custom code, they can duplicate the functionality of other packages.
#6 Django’s versatility impresses
The MVT architecture of the framework offers a solid foundation helpful in crafting any web application. In other words, Django is unbelievably versatile. It can integrate with whatever current technologies and the upcoming ones:
- It is a cross-platform, thus you can base your web app on PC, Linux, or Mac.
- It’s a fully-loaded framework, thus your app can handle large data volumes.
- This framework works with major databases, thus you’re free to use the most suitable one/ones.
- The framework simplifies the creation and processing of forms.
- It includes a robust authentication system and an extensible template system with template inheritance.
- Django makes it easier to serve data like JSON and XML.
These versatility features make Django the present and future of web development.
#7 Django’s SEO-friendly
- Sitemap and SEO frameworks
At the app level, the framework allows you to decide how the URLs will look like. Thus, the URLs become human-readable and please the google search.
Bonus: Tips on web positioning strategy by doing SEO using Django
- Manage URL changes with the Redirects app to forward search engines and website visitors from one URL to another.
- Optimize your website by handling URL changes with post save signals.
- Improve the positioning of your web page with the sitemap framework.
- Reduce page load with cached template loaders.
#8 Django comes with built-in admin panel
Django offers a well-structured and ready-to-use admin panel — a very powerful instrument for managing data. It uses a generalized language rather than technical.
By default, Django provides the admin with apps, packages, and tools that help developers produce nice-looking projects. With admin, users can create, publish, and edit the website’s content with ease.
The admin doesn’t have all the tools for building the entire front-end of your application. But it has some hooks for customization.
#9 Django is a mature framework
What do I mean by saying it is mature? To start with, it offers a rich third-party library ecosystem. Secondly, since 2005, Django has added technologies and data requirements on the client-side (e.g. distributed data and WebSockets).
Thirdly, it has numerous extensions, plugins, and third-party applications covering various needs. And fourthly, it offers components hardly any other framework does:
- Object-relational mapper
- Templating system
- Middleware classes support
Apart from all the extensions, Django is easy to learn and understand, easy to build on, and easy to support. It is also easy to read and debug allowing developers to catch up with a complex project in mid-stream.
The framework has proven itself many times. Most popular websites — Disqus, The Onion, Pinterest, Instagram, Mozilla, Mahalo, Bitbucket, Reddit Gifts, Spotify — use Django.
#10 Django is supportive
Django offers massive community support with 80,000 questions and blogs. With a professional community, you can find experts who know Django inside out. Active community experts take responsibility for:
- Updating code snippets and fresh plug-ins.
- Showing direction in solving complex programming cases.
- Improve the framework by adding new libraries.
The community also has many active contributors to GitHub. Whenever you get stuck in developing a software application with Django, somebody from the community would help you get out.
Django in 3 or 4 years
In close confines, they say that the future is looking more Pythonic than ever… And that’s so true. This June, TIOBE released its index with Python taking third place, which is the highest position it’s ever reached. If this progression continues, Python will overtake Java and C (as numbers 1 and 2, respectively) in 3 or 4 years.
According to Python expert Martijn Pieters, the scientific community has taken Python into its heart. In the meantime, Python has taken over Java in universities: it substituted Fortran in sciences, Java — in computer science departments, and MATLAB — in mathematics.
It has also substituted Java as the programming language option for large-scale applications. To date, it is taking over PHP as the programming language option for rapid development. That means we’ll see more of this programming language in the future.
There’s a chance that in 2022-2023 Django will be the world’s most popular framework. Till then, it’ll play its strengths — let developers write code and evolve it rapidly, build projects quickly and sustainably. It is a choice for those with short deadlines.
Of course, I am not trying to insist on Django being a perfect choice for everything. There is a clear-cut list of cases when Django should become a top choice. There are also a few cases when you should not go with it.
Besides, the success of any projects does not solely depend on Django. Your decision on the matter of a development company is also significant. Check the portfolio of Django-based projects, ask for references, interview, and request a quote.
I hope you liked the post and now have a better understanding of Django benefits over other frameworks. If you have questions or want to share your thoughts on Django, let me know in the comments below.