When it comes to software bundles and backend languages, two of the most popular are MEAN (MongoDB, ExpressJS, AngularJS, and NodeJS) and LAMP (Linux, Apache, MySQL, and PHP, Perl, or Python).
Both stacks rely on two different technologies for databases, backend languages, and server environments. While MEAN’s popularity has been rising over the last few years, LAMP has continued to make an impact for over a decade.
Every now and then, the question pops on up various forums as techies and students wonder out loud if one stack will replace the other. While some believe that MEAN will replace LAMP, others beg to differ.
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While a word like “stack” makes it easier for us to talk about it, it’s not actually an individual thing, rather they are components that work well together. Each component can also be just as effective in another combination or stack.
So if you approach it from that angle, it’s difficult to say that you have to stick to one stack and give up the other. It’s also impossible to see how one can completely become obsolete while it’s still playing an important role in new technology.
So will MEAN replace LAMP? The short answer is a resounding NO!
Why is LAMP still relevant?
The “L” in LAMP stands for Linux and while Windows might be in decline, Linux has been going from strength to strength. You can even run a MEAN stack on Linux, so it’s impossible to see it losing ground in the technology space.
Further, according to BuiltWith, Apache continues to be extremely popular and has dominated for over two decades (probably because it works well with several languages). Furthermore, both Apache and PHP continue to hold significant market share which is not going to disappear overnight.
MySQL is also still important and continues to be an incredibly powerful tool. When it comes to relational databases, MySQL is the best tool for the job. So it’s still going to continue to play its part in future technologies.
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Although they don’t need to, some stacks also combine both MEAN and PHP for backend business logic. But PHP’s importance will decline (and it should), but it won’t completely disappear.
Perl and Python will still be around, but all problems associated with the overuse of PHP will accelerate its decline.
What about MEAN?
To sum it all up, I have to say that LAMP will be around for years to come (even with its shortcomings) because it’s a highly reliable stack. Furthermore, it’s much easier to setup, especially when it comes to automatic provisioning.
But as a coder, you have to pay attention to the needs of the task and not the stack. You can always mix and match depending on your level of comfort and what works best for any given project.
While we might probably move on and come up with a new “cool” name for stacks, most of the individual components aren’t going away anytime soon.
What’s your take on it? Share your thoughts in the Comments section below.