Wednesday, February 22, 2006

PHP Free For All

It all started innocently enough.

Tim Bray posted his thoughts and (limited) experiences with the PHP language. The general tone was 'not impressed, but willing to be convinced.'

And then a lot of people jumped on the bandwagon, willing to convince him (or not). There were a pretty impressive number of responses given that 'Ongoing' doesn't have a comment feature (yet)!

My contribution is here.

I have had good experiences with PHP, but can certainly see the potential for horror stories (having spent a year de-obfuscating the most recursive spaghetti ridden legacy code you have ever seen!)

The bottom lines are:
  • Yes, it's easy to get started in it. (as in: easy to get a web page running!)
  • No, it doesn't guide the user to code intelligently (C-style structured programming being applied to a web page that is effectively reentrant can lead to lotsa pasta!)
  • No, it doesn't try to guide the user at all (a good thing: 'do not meddle in the affairs of wizards. They are subtle and quick to lead you down the garden path to the fairies behind the compost bin.')
  • Yes, there is room for improvement. Regrettable, but not a fault in itself. Athena might not have been such a headache if she had been prototyped!
Richness of feature can lead to richness of application, and useful stuff like PmWiki, for anyone wishing to run their own wiki site. I chose it for Boroondara Bushwalkers because:
  1. it didn't require a database
  2. PHP was the only scripting language provide by the ISP
  3. it's pretty good

Still, those seeking both ease and elegance may find it in Spyce (which does the same thing as PHP, but uses Python)

And, of course, there's Ruby on Rails (which I have not yet investigated)

Finally, to put all this into perspective: a cautionary tale.

Anyone wishing to smell the brimstone of an environment that almost forces you to code badly need only try their hand at coding and maintaining COM objects!
On second thoughts, don't! Life is short enough as it is, and you have better things to do, trust me!


At 4:22 PM , Anonymous Hire .NET Developer said...

I read your all post and I think you have a good experience regarding PHP development. I am also a Dot NET expert and working in DOT NET Development Company. I know that PHP is very critical language to learn it is not an easy task but once you have a full command on it so it will be beneficial for you.


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home