But just like the tip of the iceberg, there's way more happening behind the scenes than any user needs to know. The back-end is where all of those database calls and authentications and the other validations that help keep your data secure happen. This is what's looming behind every website.
You'll usually get to focus on just one programming language for the back-end which can be easier learn than the three you need for the front-end. One thing you'll have to watch out for are the different back-end frameworks.
With C#, you have the MVC framework, ASP.NET, and whatever other ASPs there are out there. In PHP, there's Laravel, Cake, Yii, and some other funny sounding ones. I'm not even going to touch Java. It can just stay over there.
When you start working on the back-end though, you'll be focused on working with data. Every time someone submits a form you have to make sure the information is in the right format, that it doesn't have malicious code, and that it's being written to the correct table in the right columns.
You'll also be responsible for bringing data to the user from the database. If you ever log into your bank account online you are witnessing the database being queried. As a back-end developer you'll need to know how to match the right data with the right user credentials. If you mess this up, people's sensitive information can get hacked pretty easily. That's why back-end developers get paid more honestly.
As a back-end developer, you don't even have to know front-end development and vis-versa. The two layers are so separate that you can master one without ever touching the other. When you write code on the back-end, you can give the front-end developers access to it through APIs. That way they can get the information they need to make the user interface and you can keep full control over how the data is brought in, filtered, and displayed.
If you can do both front-end and back-end development, then you are pretty incredible. Especially if you can do both at a high level. Usually it's good to pick one side to focus on and then start to dabble with the other side as you start taking on bigger projects. There is one little dangerous thing with back-end development.
Unlike the front-end side, the back-end programming languages are pretty different. PHP isn't even object-oriented so there's that. When you commit to learning a back-end language, make sure that you are learning one that will get you a job you might want. Some languages are more popular in different areas and it's important to look into that before you really start investing time and money into learning a new skill set.
Hopefully that was a little insightful. What do you guys think? Either way you go you can't really go wrong. There's such a demand for both front-end and back-end developers that it's a little weird.
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