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PHP is the scourge

Christopher Hicks
December 5, 2004 18:13
PHP is the scourge
Message ID:
On Sat, 4 Dec 2004, Marty Trujillo wrote:
> I love perl,  I love perl... but does perl have any advantages over PHP?

Many.  (1) It makes the easy things easy and the hard things possible. 
(2) CPAN.  (3) Its a very forgiving language unless you want it to be 
ruthless about what it accepts.  (4) Its not limited to the web.  Perl was 
"the systems admin" language long before it became "the web language". 
Its obviously neither exclusively, but rather a language that makes a good 
fit for lots of "glue"-type situations.  Perl is the duct tape of the 
Internet.  PHP is the cheap dime store celophane tape that dries up after 
a few weeks.

> Is it time for me to learn PHP?

Not unless you're trying to broaden your work opportunities.

> Any thoughts?

PHP is an absolutely abomination that was ill-conceived and iller 
executed.  It started off as a watered down Perl and its grown to be a 
vast library of poorly thought-out functions.  So its become the defacto 
language for people that are scared by Perl to try to write webapps in. 
The results have been horrific as another poster indicated.  Numerous 
absolutely awful PHP open source projects exist.  The few "good" PHP 
projects are still a real chore to deal with because of lack of 
flexibility in database backends without rewriting every database 
interaction and the tendancy to have the PHP write too much of the HTML so 
that your designers have to learn PHP to fix look and feel issues.

If you're looking at learning something consider Apache::ASP.  It brings 
the good parts of the ASP/PHP web development paradigm into a Perl 
context.  We've been doing heavy development with it and I'm quite pleased 
with the increase in productivity over more traditional CGI/mod_perl 
development that we've been doing for ages.


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ardent Apple faithful look like a bunch of slackers."
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