A Reflective Journal on Web Development
Task: You are required to write a reflective journal based on the concept of web development.
This report is written as a reflective journal on web development where an attempt is made to analyse the lecture materials that were provided every week to the students. These materials were divided into different parts and helped a lot in grasping the theoretical concepts of web development. These lecture materials contained information about different aspects of developing a website and main tools that were used for composing the back-end coding of a website. My goal is to learn how to develop websites and this course has helped me a lot in achieving that. The knowledge that was gained from this course will help me get closer to my career goals.
The world is moving towards an age of digitisation and in the last five years the need of having a presence online has relatively increased. Almost every business or organisation needs a website at this point of time and to get a good amount of online traffic the website needs to be well-optimized and aesthetically designed. Websites help businesses and organizations in making people aware of the services or the products that they offer and web developers help them build it. The demand for the skilled web developers is huge in the market in present times and this is why it is a great option for career.
Before dwelling into the details of any subject, it is important to understand the basic fundamentals of the subject. This helps me form an idea about what the subject is about. The first week introduced the student to the basics of the internet and its fundamentals. This week the materials focused on making me understand what web development is and the tools that are used in the process. The main topics that were covered under this week were all related to the internet and the world wide web. Here we learnt about the tools like hyperlinks and HTML, and their connection to WWW, the basic structure of web pages, the different kinds of web pages that exist, and important key terms related to the internet.
The content of this lecture was brief and gave a clear idea about web development. There was a part where the most essential key terms related to the internet were given. This helped a lot in grasping the technical side of the subject. The information about the world wide web and its components and the basic structure of a web-application was extremely insightful. The most important information that I gained from this week was about the way a web-application is designed, where its basic structure, the ways it connects to the internet was taught. At the end of the week the basics of the subject was clear and I learned a lot about the complicated ways the internet and websites work.
The second week covered the different aspects of HTML and CSS. HTML, also known as hypertext markup language, is the main language that is used to write codes for web pages (Mohsen, 2018). Recently a newer version of HTML, called HTML5 was released which had new functions and now supported audio and video files. CSS is the language that is used to define the visual features of the web pages. This language does not require HTML exclusively and can be used in XML based applications (Elmqvist et al., 2019). The important topics that were covered in this week were the various elements of HTML, the tools that are used to code and create the websites using this language and the syntaxes and the properties of the CSS system. HTML is defined as a language that is specifically used to develop websites. This helps in writing the basic back-end coding of the website. HTML5 is its newer and improved version. CSS, also known as Cascading Style Sheets is another type of language that is used to design the look of the website. The two main coding languages were very well defined in this week’s lectures (Li et al., 2019). The most relevant information about this week was about the various elements and different kinds of syntaxes that are used by the HTML language. This was really insightful and very informative. After the week's lesson the language needed for coding to develop the websites were very much clear and I learned about the two important languages that are used for web-development (Murach and Harris, 2015).
In the lesson of this week we were taught about PHP and the uses that it has. PHP is a scripting language that is open resourced and used to create websites with varying contents. The important topics that were covered in the week were the introduction to PHP as a scripting language, the various elements that it uses, the basic structure it follows for composition and the different functions that are built inside the system already (Schwarz et al., 2018). PHP is the name for a hypertext processor which has been embedded with HTML and often used to maintain the various features of the website, keep track of the database or even help in designing e-commerce websites. The popular databases around the world such as Oracle, MySQL, Informix, and so on already have the PHP system preinstalled in them. The content of this week's lesson taught me the different advantages PHP has as a programming language and the difficulties it faces (Safi et al., 2020). One thing is very clear from the content of the lesson and that is the reliability that PHP provides. It is simple, efficient, secure, familiar and flexible with its environment and that makes PHP such a good language to develop websites (Bankov, 2019). The most important lessons that I have learnt from this week includes learning PHP as a whole and understanding the advantages it has and the elements of the PHP language that makes it so reliable. The outcome of this lesson was that after the week was over I was able to write relevant codes using PHP. This lesson has taught me how the technologies are always advancing, becoming better every year. So it is important for me as a future web-developer to learn about the important systems that come out in the market.
This week the lessons were on making me familiar with the terms, characteristics and the functions of relational databases, with special focus on how PHP is used with MySQL databases. Relational databases as the name suggests are basically tables consisting of information of a particular website. It uses various of its functions to define the relationships of the data points to help make the data accessible at ease (Ruby et al., 2020). The important topics that were covered in this week were all about the different features that relational databases usually have and the advantages of MySQL that makes it so reliable. Most of the popular databases around the world such as Oracle, Sybase, Informix, and so on already have the PHP system preinstalled in them (Banks et al., 2017). The contents that were taught in this lesson were very detailed and contained a lot of important information. This content helped me understand how to use relational databases and the ways in which MySQL is a reliable database. The most useful information from this lesson was learning about the different elements of a database including the different tables it has and their functions. The outcome of this lesson is that at the end of it I was clearly able to understand the complex procedures of web-designing and the ways in which different applications make the whole process a little bit easy to access. This lesson has given an overall insight of the ways databases work and that helped me move further into my studies to develop websites.
The lesson of sixth week consisted of the different challenges that can occur when designing websites in real-time. The lesson contained the challenges and the difficulties developers often face while designing websites and the methods they use to overcome them. This lesson also talks about layering in website development and the patterns for software designs that developers follow while creating websites. The important topics that were discussed in this lesson were challenges developers face while designing websites, layering and its uses, the software design pattern used for creating the websites, the use of MVC as an interface for presentation and the errors that frequently surface (Mehta et al., 2018). The first lesson was to take an approach towards website development that is practical and page-oriented. This is because if the approach for the development of the website is page-oriented then in that case the unpredictable changes will become much easier to handle. This will also help the developer detect glitches and bugs and fix them immediately. Layering is the way where several groups of classes are put together to make the work of developing easier the functions of the software or the system gets equally shared among the classes. The content of this lesson was overall a little bit complex, however the simple language in which it was written made the lesson easier to grasp. As an outcome of the lesson I had the total knowledge of the problems that I am going to face while developing a website and also the solutions to them.
This week the lessons contained detailed discussions about PHP and the use of objects for programming. Object-oriented programming is a kind of computer language that is of higher level and they are executed using objects. The latest versions of PHP are all object-oriented and that makes it so reliable for web-developments. The important topics covered in this lesson included details about PHP, the basics of object-oriented programming, the object and classes that PHP uses and a detailed presentation on the ways object-oriented designs work. The versions of PHP that came after 5.0 all supported object-oriented programming and it is used fully with many of its syntaxes borrowed from the C++ and Java (Christudas, 2019). The classes in this object-oriented programming are always defined with new words. Then after this the other elements in classes can be modified using different syntaxes. This is a very reliable way to do the coding of the website designs. The contents that were taught in this lesson were complex but it was easy to grasp as the basic concepts were cleared in the previous classes. These lessons helped a lot in learning some of the advanced parts of website development and the coding related to it. The outcome of this lesson was that now the advance and the complex concepts of web developments have become much easier to grasp. This lesson has taught me so much about the advanced level of coding used in developing websites.
The lessons from this week taught us about the conditional statements that PHP programming uses and the way in which form data works. The conditional statements help the developers evaluate different situations to find out whether the conditions are true or false. The important topics that were discussed in this lesson plan were about the conditions that the developers use to get a true or false result in the PHP programming and the ways in which databases work. PHP is the name for a hypertext processor which has been embedded with HTML and often used to maintain the various features of the website, keep track of the database or even help in designing e-commerce websites. Databases as the name suggests are basically tables consisting of information of a particular website. It uses various of its functions to define the relationships of the data points to help make the data accessible at ease (Dawodi et al., 2019). The contents that were taught in this lesson were very detailed and contained a lot of importantinformation.This content helped me understand how to use databases, database APIs and the ways in which MySQL can become a database. The most useful information from this lesson was learning about the different elements of a database including the different tables it has and their functions. Not only that it also taught me about the different ways in which the APIs of databases can become very useful at the time of programming. The outcome of this lesson was that I grew interested in databases so I want to learn more about the different ways databases work as it intrigued me. I learned about the complex methods, coding and data that is involved in designing a website from this lesson.
In the ninth week the lessons were divided in two parts, the first was about MySQL and how to access it in PHP and the second part was about arrays and strings that are a major part of the PHP programming system. Programming for web-development usually contains a lot of coding and at times it becomes very difficult to keep track of them. The important topics that were covered in weeks lessons were functions of arrays and strings. The initial form of data from the user in which it is submitted to the server is known as a string (Banks et al., 2017). Arrays help the developer store the different elements of a data under one singular variable. This saves the developer from using extra effort of creating different variables for the different elements of the data. The contents that were presented in this lesson were very detailed and filled with the elements of coding that helped me understand the complexity of using the whole programming system but it was easy to grasp as the basic concepts were cleared in the previous classes. These lessons helped a lot in learning some of the advanced parts of website development and the coding related to it. The outcome of this lesson is that I now understand how arrays and strings work, so now I am able to use them for my coding. This has helped me a lot to understand how using different elements can make coding easier.
The week's lesson consisted of a task where a ecommerce site had to be designed for a guitar shop and the use of functions were explained further in the lesson. The ecommerce site was designed following the different requirements. Here we studied about the different elements that an ecommerce site has and how to design those elements. For this we even learned how to design the cart application in an e-commerce site. Further in the lesson we learned about functions. Functions use its parameter to take in one or more codes and then it returns one single value after processing (Huang et al., 2019). These were the important topics that were introduced in this lesson. The contents of this week were huge. The first part was about learning the different elements of an ecommerce site and the ways that its information system is developed using PHP or MySQL. This part was filled with complex coding and their outcomes. The second part was all about the different ways functions and objects are used in designing a website. Here it becomes clearer how functions along with the use of arrays and strings make the designing of a website easier. The outcome of this lesson is that at the end of it I was clearly able to understand the complex procedures of web-designing and the ways in which different applications make the whole process a little bit easy to access. I learned the complex nature of designing e-commerce sites from this lesson.
The lessons of this week dwelled further into the designing of the ecommerce site using PHP or MySQL. Here a different version of the site is presented where the features are added that allows the customers to place their orders. This lesson has so many details in it. Other important topics that this week covered were validations and error-handling. This lesson explained what errors are and the kinds of them that exist. Further in the lesson the solutions that can solve these errors were explained. Errors are basically the small mistakes in coding that can go wrong which keeps the website from working efficiently (Li et al., 2017). Bugs and glitches can be seen frequently due to these errors. Sometimes the website does not even run due to these errors. The content in last week’s essay was so detailed and touched on some of the important aspects of design that gave a practical side of what web-development looks like. This lesson really taught me a lot. All the subjects of this lesson were important. The designer of the e-commerce site explained how the web-development actually works and the efforts that go into it. The part with the errors was very insightful and taught a lot about the different ways these errors can be fixed. The outcome of this lesson was that it has prepared me to take web-development as a career and encouraged me to learn more about websites and its designing.
The lessons in each week were very well designed and structured in a very efficient way. Overall the lessons really helped me understand the mechanics as well as the aesthetics of web designing and it has helped me a lot.
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