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ExpressJS

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ExpressJS vs Laravel: What are the differences?

What is ExpressJS? Sinatra inspired web development framework for node.js -- insanely fast, flexible, and simple. Express is a minimal and flexible node.js web application framework, providing a robust set of features for building single and multi-page, and hybrid web applications.

What is Laravel? A PHP Framework For Web Artisans. Laravel is a web application framework with expressive, elegant syntax. We believe development must be an enjoyable, creative experience to be truly fulfilling. Laravel attempts to take the pain out of development by easing common tasks used in the majority of web projects, such as authentication, routing, sessions, and caching.

ExpressJS can be classified as a tool in the "Microframeworks (Backend)" category, while Laravel is grouped under "Frameworks (Full Stack)".

"Simple", "Node.js" and "Javascript" are the key factors why developers consider ExpressJS; whereas "Clean architecture", "Growing community" and "Composer friendly" are the primary reasons why Laravel is favored.

ExpressJS and Laravel are both open source tools. It seems that Laravel with 53K GitHub stars and 16.2K forks on GitHub has more adoption than ExpressJS with 44.3K GitHub stars and 7.45K GitHub forks.

According to the StackShare community, ExpressJS has a broader approval, being mentioned in 843 company stacks & 759 developers stacks; compared to Laravel, which is listed in 817 company stacks and 753 developer stacks.

Advice on ExpressJS and Laravel
Eva Maciejko
Needs advice
on
Spring Boot
Laravel
and
ExpressJS

Hello, I am a fullstack web developer. I have been working for a company with Java/ Spring Boot and client-side JavaScript(mainly jQuery, some AngularJS) for the past 4 years. As I wish to now work as a freelancer, I am faced with a dilemma: which stack to choose given my current knowledge and the state of the market?

I've heard PHP is very popular in the freelance world. I don't know PHP. However, I'm sure it wouldn't be difficult to learn since it has many similarities with Java (OOP). It seems to me that Laravel has similarities with Spring Boot (it's MVC and OOP). Also, people say Laravel works well with Vue.js, which is my favorite JS framework.

On the other hand, I already know the Javascript language, and I like Vue.js, so I figure I could go the fullstack Javascript route with ExpressJS. However, I am not sure if these techs are ripe for freelancing (with regards to RAD, stability, reliability, security, costs, etc.) Is it true that Express is almost always used with MongoDB? Because my experience is mostly with SQL databases.

The projects I would like to work on are custom web applications/websites for small businesses. I have developed custom ERPs before and found that Java was a good fit, except for it taking a long time to develop. I cannot make a choice, and I am constantly switching between trying PHP and Node.js/Express. Any real-world advice would be welcome! I would love to find a stack that I enjoy while doing meaningful freelance coding.

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Replies (10)
Recommends
Spring Boot

Hi Eva, As you have solid experience with Spring already, you should jump into freelancing with that. It would be quite stressful to start freelancing with a tech stack you don't know well. Then in the background you can keep learning/practicing an alternative and switch over when you are confident enough (eg. 0.5-1 year later). I think you should learn Laravel as you already like it and find it easier. Express has better performance but that is not required for most of the small freelancer projects.

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Recommends
ExpressJS

Looking at current technological trends and rise of JavaScript, you cannot go wrong with JavaScript. - There's an abundance of libraries to get most things done - You can use JavaScript for both the frontend and the backend - this allows you potentially share your logic/models/code across both stacks - A dynamic/interpreted language such as JavaScript is great for serverless (there's somewhat of a trend towards serverless aswell - especially in modern projects) - If you like/need static typing, you can always migrate seemlessly to Typescript - VueJS is a lightweight framework (compared to Angular), it has more GitHub stars and most would argue it's easier to work with (beginner friendly). Additionally most modern webapps do not use JQuery anymore (even though a lot of legacy projects continue to do so). You don't need JQuery if you use Vue/Angular/React

Additionally it doesn't seem like performance is a hugely important metric in your scenario, so JavaScript would suffice.

Note: These are all my opinions and what I've seen in the current market when recently searching for jobs.

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Benoît Hubert
JavaScript Instructor at Wild Code School · | 6 upvotes · 153K views
Recommends
Spring Boot

I think Patrik and Alex are right: if you're comfortable with Spring Boot already, you'll be more productive right from the start.

If you wish to learn something else besides, both Laravel and Express are good choices. They aren't in the same category of frameworks: Laravel is an all-in-one solution, while Express is more like "build your own stack from different parts". Which implies that you can use whatever you want as a database engine: MySQL or PostgreSQL are perfectly valid choices (in my school, we teach Express with MySQL, because SQL is still a big thing here in France, and a sought-after skill). You can use Sequelize or TypeORM which support all major SQL DBMS.

Express is widely used, but if you're seeking the JavaScript equivalent of Spring Boot or Laravel, you probably want to look at NestJS. The only potential downside is that it's still young, maintained by a small commmunity, compared to those behind Spring Boot and Laravel.

Bottom line: using a stack tech, that you enjoy and are comfortable with, matters. Spring Boot + Vue.js seem perfectly fine to me. But do forget jQuery if you're using Vue.js, React or Angular, because it will definitely bring more harm than good!

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Hi as someone who employs and select developers i agree with a lot almost sayed but think of what are your strengths and where you are or better where your customers are. If you search for big enterprise projects spring boot is ok sql is must and html css as well. if you want to go more to internet related companies (like airbnb, what sup, facebook ) or similar (and not asia) then react is a must node js as well. The libraries tools etc which are used you need to adopt fast. If asia then VUE is a must. but if you like small projects with individuals or like wordpress or similar then you can learn php but i think in 2020 it is wasted time. Same for python in that area. and i also see that we often have problem that developer at least must understand docker docker compose better as it works with kubernetes ,.. just my 5 cents

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Recommends
Spring Boot

I would definitely recommend you to go with Spring Boot + AngularJS + jQuery. Reasons: 1- You have an experience of 4 years with the above-mentioned stack. 2- As you mentioned that you wish to work as a freelancer, your stack is the perfect one for finding good bids with a little less effort than that of PHP + Laravel + Vue.js.

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Alex Spieslechner
Recommends
Spring Boot

in order to stay employable, I'd work with something you can deliver with. if I'd be your client and you'd have to get comfortable with a new stack, I would 100% not pay you for this startup time. learn new stuff in your free-time. or set aside time for learning.

that said, if you want to reorientate, php (even though i personally hate it) is extremely wide spread. but so are java and nodejs. so I'm not a fan of that argument... i recommend building something in each language, and see what you enjoy more. for me it was nodejs, because I already enjoy frontend JavaScript, and appreciate the ecosystem and community.

regarding expressjs and mongodb: yes, it is a goto solution for a lot of tutorials, because its as simple as it gets. especially wben using something like monk. BUT if you want to use mysql, posgres or similar, check out TypeORM, Prism or another ORM-like solution. you can use any db with express, and there's plenty of abstraction layers, which make your life easier. but i noticed that expressjs does a lot less "holding hands" compared to .net core (c#), or laravel (php). can be a pro or a con.

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Rubin Thomas
Software Cloud Developer at RUBIN THOMAS · | 4 upvotes · 93.3K views
Recommends
Python
PHP
Perl

As a developer myself, I would recommend you not to restrict yourself to JAVA, PHP or any other language. New Tools/languages keep coming every day. If you do plan to move to freelancing. PHP has a lot of options in the freelance space and a lot of competition too.

Learning PHP is as simple as learning any other language. It depends merely on your interest.

Personally if you can code, you should not restrict yourself. I have had to code in many languages, PHP, Perl, shell script, Python, Java, Javascript, Ruby etc... I would keep your developing skills and logic, algorithms etc.. and increase your knowledge and experience in the different languages.

I agree with you JAVA is a lot more time consuming. But it also has its enterprise level scope.

At the same time learning a new language should not be a barrier for you to stop exploring what's out there and keeping your skills up to date. Learning new technologies should be your primary focus and getting project out of your stack helps you build a good reputation.

There are many options for you to pursue. Having an open mindset will help you move forward. If you look to learn now, you are setting yourself up for a brighter future.

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I like fullstack freelancers who stacks are clean as one of below

  1. PHP (laravel ) + Jquery + Bootstrap

  2. Python(Django) + Angular JS or VueJS

  3. NODEJS + REACTJS

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Recommends
ExpressJS

Hey There, I would recommend going fullstack javascript since you already have experience with javascript on the front end it would be very easy to pickup node and express js. You can use sql with node and express if you please, but mongo is pretty easy to get going with.

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Ahmed Gamal

Please, try to work with your comfortable stack, here is some recommendation

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Tony Valdes Mendez
President at SmartBrite Technologies · | 3 upvotes · 64.9K views
Needs advice
on
Ruby
Node.js
and
Laravel

Hello... I hope everyone is ok amid today's global situation.

I'm trying to choose the perfect stack for a new mobile app project that resembles the super apps like GoJek & Grab.

I have gone to BUILTWITH and seen what their stack on all fronts.....however, and even though, they both differ from one another, I'm still looking for the perfect stack that will give us PERFORMANCE & SCALABILITY for years to come.

Your comments & suggestions are very important to us, so please share your thoughts.

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Replies (4)

We recommend Laravel over Ruby on Rails (Ruby) and Express.js (JavaScript/Node.js). We chose Laravel ourselves for our own internal software project, recently after comparing these same 3 software frameworks. In selecting Laravel, we chose to build our app using the software language PHP. PHP has the largest market share of all the web-based software languages (close to 80% of all websites use PHP). Also, Laravel is the fastest-growing software framework based on PHP making it a wise choice.

We also plan to integrate WordPress and WooCommerce later with our Laravel web-app. WordPress and WooCommerce like Laravel are all built using PHP. WordPress is the most popular Content Management System in the world. This will allow us to build out the front-end marketing website in WordPress. Also, we plan to offer subscriptions and sell products. For this, we will use WooCommerce. WooCommerce is the most used e-commerce platform in the world. We’ll be able to use our same Laravel developers to extend our app to WordPress and WooCommerce. By standardizing on PHP, we’ll be able to use the same software developers on all 3 platforms. PHP’s large market share will be an asset to us as we start recruiting talented software developers.

Lastly, we are gaining access to a fast-growing and awesome community that supports Laravel. Before we made our decision, I personally met Laravel’s founder Taylor Otwell along with several of his team members. After meeting with the Laravel team at Laracon US in New York City and learning more about the direction they are going with the framework, we’re confident we made the right decision.

To read the longer version of this answer where we go into more detail behind our recommendation, visit https://rackless.com/laravel-rails-expressjs

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Oded Arbel
Recommends
Vert.x

Before I recommend a tool, I think it is important to look at your requirements and capabilities - as you have looked at 3 very different tools: different programming languages, different implementation strategies and different target audience. It sounds like you don't already have a set of dedicated developers, so it is likely that your choice should be mainly driven by how easy it is to get developers that are familiar with the tools - so I'm going to list some considerations that I think you should review, starting with what I believe would be the most important for your bootstrap process:

  1. Mindshare: how easy it is to get developers that are familiar with the technology and can immediately start working on your project. This is definitely where Node.js shines - Javascript is one of the fastest growing languages and Node.js played a huge part in this. I would bet that wherever you are located, Javascript developers would be the easiest to come by.

  2. Fit for purpose: from your description we can understand that you are looking at a backend technology to implement some sort of REST API for a mobile app. The 3 different options you offered each fit on a different place on such a stack: Ruby is a programming language and not even a service framework - if you choose it, you then have to choose a server implementation and REST framework (and there are a lot, mostly as Ruby has a standard API for connecting a web server and application frameworks, and so this space has blown up) it used to be that Rails was the most popular, so you may choose that, but the interest in it has waned a bit in recent years; Node.js is a server framework, but it also has a dominant application framework called Express, that is geared well to your usage, so you'd likely work with that; Laravel is an application framework - it uses the PHP programming language, whose use has declined a bit in recent years, and was originally built for MVC type applications - though it has workflows for REST APIs and would probably work well for you as well.

  3. Scalability: while this is probably the least significant issue at the moment (when it gets to a point where the backend service is your bottleneck, you'd likely have enough resources for a rewrite), and also the most dependent on factors that you didn't specify and are hard to estimate (such as: session complexity; amounts of data; sensitivity to locality; sensitivity to latency), it is still worthy to address it. Unfortunately, I don't have any good news: Ruby is notoriously bad at getting the best performance (the current BKM for milking performance from a Ruby codebase is to run the app on the Java virtual machine); Node.js has severe memory limitations that will make it very hard to scale if your backend needs to do a lot of work (I have a very personal and troubling experience with this issue); and PHP has as many scalability optimization strategies as there are PHP developers (this is not a good thing).

My suggestion to you as to how to proceed can be summarized to this prioritized list of options: 1. Get a good head developer with a lot of experience and let them choose the best tool - they'd likely go with what they know, which is likely to be a good choice - and if not, when scalability will become an issue, you could rewrite. 2. Choose something (likely Node.js) and don't worry about scalability - see (1) above. 3. Use Vert.x: it is a highly scalable application and service framework that offers great performance as well as a lot of tools to solve data scalability, locality and latency, and it works with multiple programming languages, such as Javascript and Ruby.

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Sourabh Bagrecha
Recommends
Node.js

Node.js would be the best choice among all, you can compare all 3 of them on Stackshare and you will find that Node.js is on the top on almost every aspect, and since your focus is primarily on Performance and Scalability you won't regret after choosing Node.js. Also, the JavaScript open-source community has made a lot of effort and created numerous packages that will give you the speed and smooth execution of your project you need. Though your question was regarding backend, but if you choose JavaScript(Node.js) at your backend, then you can have a cross-functional team that can work on both, frontend as well as backend because JavaScript is everywhere, React Native for Android and iOS apps, React.js for single page web apps and Node.js ofcourse for your backend. And I don't have to tell you how much easier it would be to code and manage in a single language to build your complete system end-to-end. I hope it helps.

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Recommends
Rails

That's a really ambitious project. So you're going to want to move as quickly as possible. That means choosing a software stack that will allow you to move the most quickly. Of the ones you've listed, Ruby (Ruby on Rails, more precisely) will give you that. There are probably other options that would allow you to move even more quickly than Rails, but developers for those more advanced stacks are much more expensive, and hard to find.

Rails can and does scale to millions of users. It's not necessarily easy, but if you're running a successful app, you'll be able to afford people to help you scale out when you reach that point. But if you choose a slower framework (or have bad developers) you won't even reach the point of needing scalability.

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Zubair Khan
Director at Aafiyah Technologies · | 4 upvotes · 55.9K views
Needs advice
on
WordPress
Node.js
and
Laravel
in

Hi Team

I want your suggestions in order for me to decide which stack is suitable for the below-mentioned requirement.

Currently, I am considering building it in Wordpress (Starting with prebuilt plugins and develop on it)

But I am skeptical, so I am considering Laravel.

And recently I found one very good solution built in Angular, Node and MySQL

Here are the high-level goals I am trying to achieve:

The system has 3 modules

  • Multi-Vendor e-commerce Market Place
  • Peer to peer Selling of used items
  • Listing/ Directory kind of portal for the service industry
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Replies (4)
Husain D
Technical Architect at Axelerant · | 5 upvotes · 45.2K views
Recommends
Drupal

I would lean between Drupal and Laravel. Peer to peer selling shouldn't be too hard to set up using Drupal Commerce based modules (search for Marketplace). But if you don't find most of your requirements being met, you might want to go with Laravel. I know there are modules for Drupal that would help you achieve most of your requirements, so I would suggest doing some research there first.

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Agustin Roig
Founder & CEO at Cookinat · | 1 upvotes · 45.3K views
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Agustin Roig
Founder & CEO at Cookinat · | 1 upvotes · 44.8K views
Recommends
Node.js
at

Depends where you find more confortable, ever tech work good. the most important is the what do you are looking in you scalable project

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Recommends
Laravel

It has the necessary packages for what you need, in addition to optimizing your time with what is needed.

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View all (4)
Decisions about ExpressJS and Laravel
washie mugo
Chose
Django
over
Laravel

i find python quite resourceful. given the bulk of libraries that python has and the trends of the tech i find django which runs on python to be the framework of choice to the upcoming web services and application. Laravel on the other hand which is powered by PHP is also quite resourceful and great for startups and common web applications.

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Christopher Wray
Web Developer at Soltech LLC · | 6 upvotes · 115.6K views

When I started on this project as the sole developer, I was new to web development and I was looking at all of the web frameworks available for the job. I had some experience with Ruby on Rails and I had looked into .net for a bit, but when I found Laravel, it felt like the best framework for me to get the product to market. What made me choose Laravel was the easy to read documentation and active community. Rails had great documentation, but lacked some features built in that I wanted out of the box, while .net had a ton of video documentation tutorials, but nothing as straightforward as Laravels. So far, I am happy with the decision I made, and looking forward to the website release!

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Pros of ExpressJS
Pros of Laravel
  • 362
    Simple
  • 318
    Node.js
  • 235
    Javascript
  • 183
    High performance
  • 147
    Robust routing
  • 66
    Open source
  • 64
    Middlewares
  • 52
    Great community
  • 33
    Hybrid web applications
  • 8
    Well documented
  • 8
    Sinatra inspired
  • 4
    Isomorphic js.. superfast and easy
  • 3
    Rapid development
  • 2
    Socket connection
  • 2
    Npm
  • 2
    Event loop
  • 2
    Light weight
  • 2
    Resource available for learning
  • 1
    Callbacks
  • 1
    Data stream
  • 0
    Xxx
  • 502
    Clean architecture
  • 361
    Growing community
  • 337
    Composer friendly
  • 313
    Open source
  • 293
    The only framework to consider for php
  • 194
    Mvc
  • 189
    Quickly develop
  • 155
    Dependency injection
  • 143
    Application architecture
  • 129
    Embraces good community packages
  • 57
    Write less, do more
  • 50
    Restful routing
  • 46
    Orm (eloquent)
  • 43
    Artisan scaffolding and migrations
  • 42
    Database migrations & seeds
  • 35
    Awesome
  • 33
    Great documentation
  • 25
    Awsome, Powerfull, Fast and Rapid
  • 25
    Promotes elegant coding
  • 24
    Build Apps faster, easier and better
  • 22
    JSON friendly
  • 21
    Most easy for me
  • 20
    Eloquent ORM
  • 20
    Easy to learn, scalability
  • 19
    Modern PHP
  • 19
    Test-Driven
  • 18
    Beautiful
  • 18
    Blade Template
  • 13
    Security
  • 11
    Clean Documentation
  • 10
    Based on SOLID
  • 10
    Convention over Configuration
  • 10
    Cool
  • 9
    Simple
  • 9
    Easy to attach Middleware
  • 8
    Get going quickly straight out of the box. BYOKDM
  • 8
    Easy to use
  • 8
    Laravel + Cassandra = Killer Framework
  • 8
    Easy Request Validatin
  • 8
    Simpler
  • 8
    Fast
  • 7
    Simplistic , easy and faster
  • 7
    Less dependencies
  • 7
    Its just wow
  • 6
    Super easy and powerful
  • 6
    Friendly API
  • 5
    Great customer support
  • 5
    Its beautiful to code in
  • 4
    Easy
  • 4
    Active Record
  • 4
    Fast and Clarify framework
  • 4
    Php7
  • 4
    The only "cons" is wrong! No static method just Facades
  • 4
    Speed
  • 3
    Laragon
  • 3
    Eloquent
  • 3
    Composer
  • 3
    Easy views handling and great ORM
  • 3
    Minimum system requirements
  • 3
    Laravel Mix
  • 2
    Ease of use
  • 2
    Cashier with Braintree and Stripe
  • 2
    Laravel Spark
  • 2
    Laravel Passport
  • 2
    Laravel Nova
  • 2
    Laravel casher
  • 2
    Intuitive usage
  • 2
    Laravel Horizon and Telescope
  • 2
    Laravel Forge and Envoy
  • 1
    Touch heart artisan
  • 1
    Rapid development
  • 1
    Heart touch
  • 1
    Like heart beat
  • 1
    Laravel love live long
  • 0
    Scout

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Cons of ExpressJS
Cons of Laravel
  • 22
    Not python
  • 15
    Overrated
  • 14
    No multithreading
  • 6
    Javascript
  • 5
    Not fast
  • 2
    Easily Insecure for Novices
  • 40
    PHP
  • 26
    Too many dependency
  • 19
    Slower than the other two
  • 15
    A lot of static method calls for convenience
  • 13
    Too many include
  • 10
    Heavy
  • 7
    Bloated
  • 6
    Laravel
  • 5
    Confusing
  • 4
    Does not work well for file uploads in Shared Hosting
  • 3
    Too underrated
  • 2
    Not fast with MongoDB
  • 1
    Difficult to learn
  • 1
    Not using SOLID principles

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What is ExpressJS?

Express is a minimal and flexible node.js web application framework, providing a robust set of features for building single and multi-page, and hybrid web applications.

What is Laravel?

It is a web application framework with expressive, elegant syntax. It attempts to take the pain out of development by easing common tasks used in the majority of web projects, such as authentication, routing, sessions, and caching.

Need advice about which tool to choose?Ask the StackShare community!

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What are some alternatives to ExpressJS and Laravel?
Koa
Koa aims to be a smaller, more expressive, and more robust foundation for web applications and APIs. Through leveraging generators Koa allows you to ditch callbacks and greatly increase error-handling. Koa does not bundle any middleware.
React
Lots of people use React as the V in MVC. Since React makes no assumptions about the rest of your technology stack, it's easy to try it out on a small feature in an existing project.
Flask
Flask is intended for getting started very quickly and was developed with best intentions in mind.
Django
Django is a high-level Python Web framework that encourages rapid development and clean, pragmatic design.
Go
Go is expressive, concise, clean, and efficient. Its concurrency mechanisms make it easy to write programs that get the most out of multicore and networked machines, while its novel type system enables flexible and modular program construction. Go compiles quickly to machine code yet has the convenience of garbage collection and the power of run-time reflection. It's a fast, statically typed, compiled language that feels like a dynamically typed, interpreted language.
See all alternatives
Reviews of ExpressJS and Laravel
Review of
Laravel

I moved from .NET and Rails to Laravel, and since then never thought to go back. I feel Laravel framework has the capability to overcome all modern frameworks.

At Soft Pyramid we are developing rich business applications using Laravel Framework, and never feel any limitation even for complex reporting.We have written REST apis, complex ERP solutions and found awsome in all areas.

How developers use ExpressJS and Laravel
Cloudcraft uses
ExpressJS

Express.js is the workhorse of the Cloudcraft.co backend. It's not the most exciting part of a stack, but it works, is very well documented, and you can find a plugin for almost everything you could possibly want. We also carefully evaluated Koa.js, but decided not to go down this route: fewer plugins, less documentation & answers online. I'm also not personally convinced by the generators yield syntax at all. ES7 async functions looks like a much better bet, and with Promises and Babel I can have that already today.

Volkan Özçelik uses
ExpressJS

I use express.js for nightly.zerotoherojs.com and dojo.zerotoherojs.com web apps.

Express is well-known, lightweight, works out-of-the-box, has great middleware support and has minimal learning curve.

It is the best framework to start developing a general Node.js web app.

bright machine uses
Laravel

The best PHP framework right now, intuitive and growing up quickly.

We use Laravel in the outer layer of our Clean Architecture codebases, whereby the domain model does not rely on the framework as a whole.

Kent Steiner uses
ExpressJS

I'm fluent in ExpressJS, but over the past two years I have moved to HapiJS. Similar results, but I find Hapi to be more full-featured towards my app, api and service needs. I can operate confidently in both.

Kent Steiner uses
Laravel

See "PHP", I don't really choose to use it, but I can step in and operate in Laravel when necessary. Same goes for quite a few other PHP frameworks, including my own full-featured proprietary stack.

Promethean TV uses
ExpressJS

PrometheanTV utilizes the ExpressJS web application framework to deploy various web applications and services including the Broadcast Center Tool, our video embed service, and our REST API.

Nicholas Alexander uses
Laravel

An excellent PHP framework employing SOLID principles to rapidly develop web-site systems and connect them to databases. Custom development of admin screens for website management.

Doug Bromley uses
Laravel

A clean, easy to understand, well documented framework with excellent tools and a great community providing every imaginable extension to add functionality to your project.

Jake Taylor uses
Laravel

Laravel is the PHP framework we use. It speeds up development and simplifies a lot of PHP. Complicated at first but saves time once you're comfortable with it.

Merge In uses
ExpressJS

We rely on ExpressJS to serve our content simply, easily, and effectively, without the bloat-ware. Big thanks to StrongLoop for supporting this package.