Python is one of the most acceptable languages among web and application developers because of its strong emphasis on efficiency and readability. There are numerous outstanding Python web frameworks, each with their own specialities and features.
What Are Frameworks In Python?
A framework is a collection of modules or packages which helps in writing web applications. While working on frameworks in python we don’t have to worry about the low level details such as protocols, sockets or thread management.
Frameworks automate the common implementation of common solutions which gives the flexibility to the users to focus on the application logic instead of the basic routine processes.
Frameworks make the life of web developers easier by giving them a structure for app development. They provide common patterns in a web application that are fast, reliable and easily maintainable.
Lets take a look at a few operations involved in a web application using a web framework:
- Url Routing – Routing is the mechanism of mapping the URL directly to the code that creates the web page.
- Input form handling and validation – Suppose you have a form which takes some input, the idea is to validate the data and then save it.
- Output formats with template engine – A template engine allows the developers to generate desired content types like HTML, XML, JSON.
- Database connection – Database connection configuration and persistent data manipulation through an ORM.
- Web security – Frameworks give web security against cross-site request forgery aka CSRF, sql injection, cross-site scripting and other common malicious attacks.
- Session storage and retrieval – Data stored in the session storage gets cleared when the page session ends.
Python Web framework is a collection of packages or modules that allow developers to write Web applications or services. With it, developers don’t need to handle low-level details like protocols, sockets or process/thread management.
Python web framework will help you with:
- Interpreting requests (getting form parameters, handling cookies and sessions,..)
- Producing responses (presenting data as HTML or in other formats,..)
- Storing data persistently (and other things)
Now, let’s look at the most useful and famous Python web framework to help you with Web development.
Python Full-Stack Frameworks
A full-stack framework in Python is one which attempts to provide a complete solution for applications. It attempts to supply components for each layer in the stack.
Django Python is a framework for perfectionists with deadlines. With it, you can build better Web apps in much less time, and in less code. Django is known for how it focusses on automating. It also believes in the DRY (Don’t Repeat Yourself) principle. Django was originally developed for content-management systems, but is now used for many kinds of web applications. This is because of its templating, automatic database generation, DB access layer, and automatic admin interface generation. It also provides a web server for development use.
Giant companies that use Django Python are- Instagram, Pinterest, Disqus, Mozilla, The Washington Times, and Bitbucket. In fact, when we think of the terms ‘framework’ and ‘Python’, the first thing that comes to our minds is Django. We will see more on Django in another lesson.
With TurboGears, you can create a database-driven, ready-to-extend application in just a few minutes. It is an MVC web framework with ORM with real multi-database support and support for horizontal data partitioning. It also has a widget system to simplify the development of AJAX apps. You may additionally install its template engine Kajiki. TurboGears is a microframework and a full-stack solution. It’s PyPI package is called tg.devtools.
With web2py, you can develop, deploy, debug, test, administer the database, and maintain applications via the provided web interface. It has no configuration files, and you can even run it off a USB drive. web2py uses the MVC built-in ticketing system to manage errors.
CubicWeb is a semantic web application framework that features a query language and a selection+view mechanism. It also features multiple databases, security, workflows, and reusable components.
Django-hotsauce is a general-purpose web toolkit that sits on top of Django and other frameworks. It is an interactive Pythonic API that will let you create scalable web applications using the WSGI 1.0 spec. It also provides native bindings for the Schevo DBMS, Durus, ZODB, and Authkit projects.
A strict MVC framework that strictly separates Model, View and Controller elements, Giotto makes sure that designers, Web developers, and sysadmins can work independently. It also includes controller modules that allow you to build applications on top of the web, irc or the command line.These are all the most popular Python web framework.
Grok was built on the existing Zope 3 libraries. It aims to provide an easier learning curve, and a more agile development experience by emphasizing on convention over configuration and DRY (Don’t Repeat Yourself).
Pylons is a lightweight Web framework aiming at flexibility and rapid development. With the best ideas from Ruby, Python, and Perl, it makes for a structured, but extremely flexible Python Web framework. With Pylons, Web development is fast, flexible, and easy. Pylons is built on top of Paste. But after being merged with Pyramid to form the Pylons project, it is in maintenance-only status.
You can use Reahl to develop web applications in pure Python. However, you may use, customize, or compose widgets in usual Python code. These widgets portray certain server-side and client-side behaviors.
Wheezy is a lightweight, high performance, and high concurrency WSGI web framework. Its key features include routing, model update/validation, authentication/authorization, content caching with dependency, middleware, and more. With these, we can build modern, efficient web.
Zope2 is rightly the granddaddy of Python web frameworks, it has been a family of networks. It is a web framework and a general-purpose application server. Today, it is primarily used for CMS. We also have Zope3, which is a standalone framework and a collection of related libraries.
While Tornado isn’t that famous, it is great with non-blocking I/O. You can scale it to handle tens of thousands of open connections. It makes for a perfect framework for long polling, WebSockets, and other usages needing a continuous connection. Officially, Tornado only supports Linux and BSD OS (Windows and Mac OS X- only for development). Tornado finds its origin in the FriendFeed project, which now belongs to Facebook.
Non-Full-Stack Frameworks in Python
A Python non full-stack framework will provide the base application server. This either runs as its own independent process, upon Apache, or in other environments. Let’s look at the most popular ones.
a. Python Bottle
Bottle is a simple and fast microframework that you can use to create small Web applications. It provides request-dispatching routes with URL-parameter support, templates, key/value databases, and a built-in HTTP server. It also offers adapters for third-party WSGI/HTTP-server and template engines. This is all in a single file; there are no dependencies except the Python Standard Library.
It is a pythonic, object-oriented HTTP framework. A web application powered by CherryPy is a standalone Python application that embeds its own multi-threaded web server.
In a way, CherryPy is a way between the programmer and the problem. It also supports various web servers like Apache, IIS, and so. CherryPy will let you launch multiple HTTP servers at once.
c. Python Flask
Python Web Framework — Python Flask
Like we’ve said before, Flask is a microframework for Python. It includes a built-in development server, and unit-testing support. It is also fully Unicode-enabled with RESTful request-dispatching and WSGI compliance.
Flask will be useful when you want to develop small, simple applications. With it, you can operate your database however you like- using SQLAlchemy or whatever. A goof Flask example is it is used by LinkedIn and Pinterest.
Hug is among the fastest web frameworks for Python. With it, you can build APIs. It supports several API versions, automatic API documentation, and annotation-powered validation. It is built on top of another JSON framework, Falcon.
Unlike a few that we discussed so far, Pyramid is a framework for large applications. It is flexible; a Pyramid web application starts from a single-file module, and evolves into an ambitious project. You can say that it makes real-world Web application development and deployment more fun, predictable, and productive. Actually, Pyramid is a Pylons project.
It is a small, flexible Python toolkit that lets you develop highly stateful Web applications. Albatross deploys to CGI, FastCGI, and ModPython servers.
Circuits are much like CherryPy, but is a highly efficient web framework to develop standalone multiprocess applications. It supports concurrency, asynchronous I/O components, and is event-driven.
A microframework for small applications, app backends, and higher-level frameworks, Falcon encourages to follow the concept of REST. It is among the fastest web frameworks for Python and is used by EMC, Hurricane Electric, OpenStack, Opera Software, Wargaming, and others.
Growler is built on top of asyncio, and is inspired by Connect and Express frameworks for Node.js. If you want ORM or templating, you must install it manually. It handles requests by passing through a middleware chain.
MorePath is a flexible, model-driven web framework. It supports REST and focusses on reusability and extensibility.
Pycnic is among the fastest web frameworks for Python for developing JSON APIs. The framework is object-oriented and optimized for JSON APIs. It only includes tools for creating Web APIs that leave a lighter footprint.
Sanic is a flask-like framework, but it is fast. It supports asynchronous request handlers, and makes code non-blocking and speedy.
Advantages Of Frameworks
- Good documentation
Why Use A Framework?
Frameworks make it easier to reuse the code for common HTTP operations. They structure the projects in a way so that the other developers with the knowledge of the framework can easily maintain and build the application.
Library vs Framework
|Less complex||More complex|
|When you call a method from a library, you are in control.||The control is inverted, the frameworks calls you.|
|A library performs specific operations.||A framework contains the basic flow, the rest is build by the user.|
The key advantage of using a framework instead of a library is the flexibility. They are extensible and provides us with the necessary tools to extend its features.
When you have a library, you have to learn each functionality to perform certain operations. But with frameworks it becomes relatively easy due to the structured control of the flow. We just have to direct our operations using a certain operation using the functionalities already existing in the framework.