# We Don't Need No Stinkin' Web Frameworks

January 25, 2009

Web frameworks can be nice, but they can also get in your way. One of the pleasant side effects of implementing more and more functionality over XMPP is that we’ve eliminated the need for Web frameworks at Stanziq. This is extremely liberating.

How do we survive without them? Here are some of the ways:

• Web frameworks may offer a lot of functionality, but XMPP has a excellent, diverse set of extensions that offer a higher layer to application developers. Web frameworks are still essentially stuck on basic protocol plus ad-hoc commands. XMPP provides pubsub, presence, discovery, and much more.
• Communication is done via XMPP through Strophe instead of polling a database or using work queues. This is a step up in efficiency.
• Configuration is stored in pubsub nodes instead of relational databases. One awesome consequence of this is that all subscribers get instant notification of configuration changes, sort of like a broadcast SIGHUP.
• Front end apps, administrative code, and internal utilities are all just JavaScript. This makes them trivial to develop and test locally, and we don’t need any special deployment code.
• The whole system is more decoupled because there is no middle interfacing layer. The backend speaks XMPP, the frontend speaks XMPP, and they both use standard XMPP layer protocols to do work.

Of course, this isn’t the right fit for every problem; Web frameworks solve a lot of problem domains quite well. For those areas where it fails, it sure is nice to avoid the hassle and use an XMPP only stack.

We Don't Need No Stinkin' Web Frameworks - January 25, 2009 - Jack Moffitt