Want to Jumpstart learning web development PHP/ruby/C#

I wanted to learn web development for a long time. now ive finally gotten the time to do so. This is what i have understood by now that i have to learn HTML/CSS, Javascript, PHP/Ruby, sql (in this order). i want advise as in order to become full blown web developer which path i have to take w.r.t PHP/ruby/C# especially as im confused in this aspect that which language to pick out of these three. please advise keeping in mind the current/future market and usability. I have previous working knowledge of VB.NET and basic SQL if it is of any help.

It doesn’t really matter which one you use in the long run. However, if your goal is to be employed in the future then you should look at jobs online to see what is most in need in your area. Generally ASP.NET will be up near the top. VB.NET is still used in ASP.NET, but not much. Most of it has moved to C# which is much better.

I would say take it slow and learn HTML/CSS then jump straight in to C# ASP.NET if that’s what you’re most familiar with (imho preferably using MVC). But you can choose any of them you want, C# is used more in the corporate/enterprise world, Ruby is used more on the startup side of things but is moving to other areas, PHP is used in a lot of CMS’s (like Wordpress, Drupal, Joomla).

You also have a few more options than the ones you mentioned for backend web development: Python, Node.js, or Java/Scala/Groovy.

All viable.

All good options.

Knowing JavaScript is very important, but it doesn’t necessarily need to come after HTML/CSS. If you’re seeking to be a full stack developer, learning it in conjunction with the server-side language and getting a good understanding of AJAX is probably the best. Then later on when you can produce functional products, sit down and get to know JavaScript properly.


I’m going to call in @MalCurtis and see what advice he can offer you.

Not sure if I have much more to offer. @mawburn’s advice is solid. At the end of the day, you’re going to have no problem finding a job as a solid C#, Ruby or PHP developer – it’ll just be the type of job (most likely, we’re generalising here).


Thank you for such detailed reply. I aim to go freelance and from the advice i gather from you this is the course i would take:
Java script
But surprisingly very few have recommended to take c# as the main language. Most incline towards php or ruby. Why so?

I suspect it is because they are more marketable, but that may differ in different countries. Here in NZ it is definitely the case.

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I agree. C# maybe a better course to take also because of the sheer diversity of the language i.e. desktop, mobile apps etc. Can some one recommend any good book or online MOOC for this?

C# may not be the best answer for freelance.
If you are wanting to make client websites then php may be the way to go.
If you are wanting to make small applications Ruby/Python is probably the way to go.
Javascript knowledge wont hurt either way…


Agreed, and I use this daily. C# has a VERY limited market in Freelance. You either work in a consultant shop, or for a company whose built their enterprise off of the .NET framework. Rarely would you be asked to do a job freelance that requires .NET. There just isn’t a big market for it.

However, this may change in the next 2-3 years now that Microsoft is making .NET open source. We’ll see it pop up in places it previously had no market. How well it catches on is a different question, and no one really knows. But the next 2 years will tell.


I’m confused now :frowning:. @mawburn please advise…

There are a lot of .NET jobs, but they are salary/contract jobs. They usually hire you from a consulting firm or as an employee (not a freelancer). I’ve worked in small towns/cities and large ones, and in each one the .NET jobs constantly look to hire someone or outsource them from a consulting firm. We’ve rarely ever hired a freelancer.


Basically what @cpradio and @orodio said.

Adding to that, the PHP CMSs (Wordpress, Drupal, Joomla) that I mentioned earlier are used heavily by freelancers.

I assumed your goal was a job, sorry for that. PHP is absolutely the way to go for freelancing.

Thank you all for your invaluable insight

Thank you.

But everyone here knows their stuff. I was just the first one to speak up. lol

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Speak for yourself

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One thing to bear in mind is that you don’t have to lock everything in place right now. You might find your path changing as you go along, and that’s absolutely fine. With some HTML, CSS and JavaScript under your belt, you might find yourself getting pulled toward PHP to hone your WordPress skills, or you might dive into Ruby or something else. Each language has its own quirks and characteristics, some of which appeal to some devs and not others. If you focus on getting good at what you enjoy, you’ll probably be more employable than if you learn something you don’t really like just because you think it’ll get you work.


Agreed 100%. Spot on. Thanks

Like others, I agree w/ all the advices. If I were you, I’d focus strongly on Javascript then PHP. Why? because every web development requires it. Let me emphasize “strongly on Javascript”. Javascript is just a language w/ particular syntax. If you are trying to make kickass project w/ “Javascript” alone then you won’t go far. You need to reuse other people’s code aka Open Source. Here are must know Javascript technology

AngularJS - MVC Framework
jQuery - AJAX / Dom manipulator library
SASS/Compass - CSS library
Bootstrap - Responsive Design

Of course, above are “my” choices but if you want to be the rockstar of web development then it begins with Javascript

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I also plan to follow the same course plus will dive into the additional technologies / frameworks as you advised. Thanks

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