So I'm about to drop a bombshell. I pretty much know that most of this content is fairly findable on the forums or just through google, but I'm having trouble finding consolidated and current info about where web dev/design is going.

I'm basically building a website for a student group that I started at my university. Our goal is to catalog all the student groups and their projects and make them searchable. There will be embedded forums, rss feed options. A whole lot of other things (basically productivity web applications)

Mind you, I do know generic languages such as C and C++, but knowledge of web dev is limited. So I'm willing to learn languages myself, but i'm short on time so I want to choose the most effective path. (Getting someone who knows it already would be ideal, but school's out right now so finding one is a bit difficult and I don't have the money to pay for one)

What is the best language/framework to go with to stay current? I've been told AJAX is great for web 2.0 since you can change content without a page refresh. I don't know if thats limited to AJAX only.

Does the choice of language matter for both the developer and the designer? I ask this question in the sense that, I want to know languages work well together and what doesn't?

I guess the better way to decide the tools to use is to know the objectives:
search engine
@ucla.edu logins only
database all the clubs
forums for each club
live feeds for topic of interest
easy to use (usability is probably the most important aspect, minimizing load times and such)

So I know I'm probably reiterating a previous thread, if you can just link me to a site, book you recommend that would be great. I can always go back to webmonkey.com, but I wanted to ask here as well. Thanks in advance! (feel free to reply here as well)


My two cents:

Since you are familiar with C and C++, you could pick up php very quickly. Here's a quote for you:

"A significant portion of PHP's syntax, conditions, boolean functionality and loops have been copied from C, and as such, PHP is an amazingly simple language to pick up, especially for those already familiar with C and it's derivatives. "


It will run on most any OS and is open source.

The php community is enormous and the daniweb php forum is the most active forum under the web development category. Php is one of the best documented languages on the web, with it's own user manual at www.php.net.

It integrates with JavaScript perfectly for DHTML and AJAX. It can connect with just about any database you can find.

Be a part of the DaniWeb community

We're a friendly, industry-focused community of developers, IT pros, digital marketers, and technology enthusiasts meeting, networking, learning, and sharing knowledge.