What is the Lumen Framework?
To create a web application, it is usually not useful to develop it from scratch. For one thing, this would require very comprehensive knowledge. On the other hand, the time required for this would be very high, so that it would hardly be profitable. For this reason, frameworks are often used for this purpose.
These already contain all the essential functions for the corresponding task. Then it is only necessary to put them together and adapt them to individual requirements.
However, there is a very wide choice in the area of web frameworks. Therefore, it is important to choose a suitable package. One option for this is Lumen. This is a relatively new solution – the release took place only in 2015.
Another special feature is that the same developer is responsible for the design as for the Laravel web framework. This already suggests that there are some commonalities in the process. This article introduces what Lumen is, its special features and its distinction from Laravel.
Deploying Web Applications via Microservice
We have already outlined the rough features of Lumen in the introduction: It is a framework for developing web applications, designed by the same person as the much better known Laravel framework. In addition, however, there are some other important properties. For example, it is of great importance that it is a framework based on microservices. This technique is not too widespread in this field so far. Therefore, it is very important to go into more detail about what microservices actually are and what advantages and disadvantages they offer.
What is a microservice?
For many decades, computer programs were almost always monolithic programs. This means that they consist of a closed unit, which is functional only as a whole. However, microservices have been gaining popularity for a few years now. This means that a program consists of many individual components that are independent of each other and that also function on their own. A program can then access various such services. These perform their task completely independently and only transmit the result. The connection here is only loose. For example, it is possible for different applications to access the same microservices.
Communication via API
When using microservices, it is very important to pay attention to a suitable form of communication. So-called APIs are used for this purpose. This abbreviation stands for Application Programming Interface. Each microservice must provide a corresponding API. The actual application can then access these and make a corresponding request. If necessary, authentication of this request takes place. If this is successful, the microservice completes its task and sends the result back to the application. This can use it thereupon. For the system to work, it is important to select suitable data formats. Detailed documentation is also necessary so that developers accessing the microservice know exactly what information they are getting from it.
What are the benefits of using microservices?
When it comes to deciding whether to use Lumens for your web application, whether you want to use a monolithic program or microservices plays an important role. It is therefore very important to take a close look at the advantages of using microservices and in which cases this technology makes sense.
A major advantage is the high flexibility of these systems. If required, new functions can be easily added by means of a suitable microservice, without the need for adjustments to the other services. Therefore, extensions can be implemented much easier than with monolithic programs. The scalability of the systems is also high, as adding more services is not a problem. During the development phase, it is also advantageous that the basic functions can be used after a short time. You can then add the slightly less important functions while you are already using the program. Maintenance tasks are also easy to implement, as it is possible to perform them separately for each individual service.
Microservices are also characterized by the ability to have the overall application developed by many independent teams. It is only necessary to specify which tasks each individual service must perform. Then a team can develop it quite independently. It is even possible to use different programming languages for the individual services. This not only leads to high flexibility in design. In addition, for each service it is possible to select a technique that is perfect for the task at hand. In addition, you can always use up-to-date technology for extensions – even if the other services still work with older technologies. Thus, a step-by-step modernization is possible.
Finally, you usually benefit from a high execution speed. The use of small independent services means that the computational effort required to complete the corresponding tasks is usually significantly less than when using a large monolithic application. Therefore, using microservices is also recommended if you value efficient execution.
Lumen and Laravel
We have already said that Lumen has a lot in common with the well-known web framework Laravel: Both techniques were developed by the same person – Taylor Otwell. Therefore, it is reasonable to suspect that there are also some similarities. This is indeed the case and for many projects it even makes sense to use both techniques together.
It has already been said that microservices provide small independent services. Lumen is designed for exactly this task. These services are back-end applications. Front-end applications that access these services, on the other hand, cannot be created with Lumen. You can use various other languages and frameworks for this purpose. A very popular solution is to use Laravel for this purpose. These two frameworks are perfectly aligned, making it easy to create very efficient applications.
Moreover, there are great syntactic similarities in the process. A development team that has mastered Laravel can also create microservices with Lumen with a relatively short learning curve. Moreover, it is possible to switch Lumen applications to Laravel if needed.
Simple and efficient development
Another advantage that this framework offers is that it is very easy to develop. The learning curve here is very steep. This allows developers from different disciplines to quickly learn the ropes. The development time is also usually very short. A wide range of functions are available here, so it is not necessary to develop them yourself. This significantly reduces the effort required to create the applications.
Conclusion: The use of lumens ensures high execution speed
The Lumen framework represents an interesting alternative to the existing options for web development. Of particular interest here is the use of microservices, which is not possible with most other techniques. This leads to excellent flexibility in development and excellent maintenance and expansion possibilities. In addition, there is a very high execution speed. Therefore, if you value these aspects, this framework is an excellent choice for your projects.
Sascha Thattil ist Geschäftsführer bei YUHIRO. YUHIRO unterstützt Agenturen, IT Dienstleister und IT Abteilungen bei dem Aufbau von Webentwickler/ Laravel Entwickler Teams in Indien.