PHP at 20

I just read from Slashdot that PHP just turned 20 years old. PHP is a popular general-purpose scripting language that is especially suited to web development. PHP powers many parts of this web site, including this blog you are just reading. The traditional development way for long time has been to use PHP at the server and use JavaScript to do things in the browser end.

In HP at 20: From pet project to powerhouse Ben Ramsey provides a look at the rise of PHP, the one-time ‘silly little project’ that has transformed into a Web powerhouse. When Rasmus Lerdorf released “a set of small tight CGI binaries written in C,” he had no idea how much his creation would impact Web development.

PHP stepped in to fill our need for a tool that would enable us to do dynamic things on the and has since grown up with the Web. The first version was a small CGI binary that provided form-processing functionality with access to request parameters and the mSQL database.  PHP is now powering more than 80 percent of the Web, PHP has matured into a scripting language that is especially suited to solve the Web problem. The history of PHP is a story of pragmatism over theory and problem solving over purity.

With the first PHP 7 alpha release due out today and benchmarks showing performance as good as or better than that of HHVM in many cases, PHP is keeping up with the pace of modern Web development needs.

There are many other web tools that compete against PHP . One such battle is for example PHP vs. Node.js. PHP vs. Node.js: An epic battle for developer mind share tells story how the old guard and upstart darling of the server-side Web stack up against each other. For every coder crowing about the purity of Node.js and the simplicity of JavaScript everywhere, there’s another who’s happy with the deep code base and long-understood stability of PHP.


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