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Perspectives on the future of PHP

Technology as empowerment

Angie “Webchick” Byron, Drupal core committer, put something into words in a Spring 2014 podcast interview that sums up my thoughts on how we, as creators of software, enable and empower others to do good in the world. Paraphrasing Angie: “We make really abstract complicated programming concepts accessible to non-developers, available to them by clicking a few buttons, without having to understand all the code that comes underneath it. What I get really excited about is the idea that we create really easily accessible things to help those people who are on the front lines trying to make the world a better place. We can build technology to enable that.”

PHP Lego Elephant

Announcing the Future of PHP guest blog series

As part of the LAMP stack, PHP is a dominant, open source web technology and it is getting more powerful all the time: convergence through technologies like Composer and the PSR standards is bringing once disparate communities together. Multiple “meta projects” like Drupal are adopting code from around the PHP and free-and-open-source spheres. Contribution to one project has become contribution to whole ecosystems. After getting a lot of great attention for the 2013 series we called “The Power of PHP”, it’s time to talk about ... The Future of PHP!

Where do we do all this? Governments, enterprises, non-profits, schools, banks, and space programs run PHP applications of every shape, size, and purpose. Many – maybe most – of us in the world of open source software are idealists. Since PHP powers 80% of the web today, we can also say pragmatically that we are perfectly positioned to have the chance – and perhaps the responsibility – to make a difference through PHP. But how do we get there? Where is “there”? What are the tools available to us now and around the corner?

Who? What?

This series of articles by experts from around the PHP ecosystem will investigate "The Future of PHP" from a broad range of angles, perspectives, and depths. From trends, to the so-called "PHP Renaissance", to the nuts and bolts of various functionality (PHP 5.x v. 5.y ...), to the brave new world of performant PHP (HHVM, PHPNG, oh my!), to inter-project cooperation (Drupal + Symfony, anyone?) and functional interaction (Composer, PSR); we’ll take a look at all this and more.

In the next months, I am looking forward to sharing with you posts and podcasts featuring Lukas Smith, Ryan Weaver, Larry Garfield, Lorna Jane Mitchell, Richard Miller, Chris Cornutt, Chris Hartjes, Fabrice Bernhard, Michelangelo van Dam, and perhaps a surprise guest or two!

Also in the Future of PHP series

  1. Future of PHP series landing page
  2. Perspectives on the future of PHP – "The Future of PHP" series intro, Jeffrey A. "jam" McGuire
  3. The future of PHP ... at a distance – Lukas Kahwe Smith
  4. Composer – Dependency Management in PHP – Lorna Mitchell
  5. The Future of PHP is Shared Power Tools – Ryan Weaver
  6. PHP is getting Faster – Richard Miller
  7. PSR-What? Shared Standards for a Bright Future – Lorna Mitchell
  8. Voices of the ElePHPant / Acquia Podcast Ultimate Showdown Part 1 & Part 2 - Acquia Podcast audio/video with Cal Evans and Jeffrey A. "jam" McGuire
  9. PHP: Under the Hood, Running the Web - Michelangelo van Dam
  10. A Symfony Shop Embraces Drupal 8 & Gets Down to Business - Acquia Podcast audio/video interview with Chris Jolly
  11. Building Bridges, Linking Islands - Larry Garfield
  12. Drupal & PHP: Linking Islands, the podcast – Part 1 & Part 2 - Acquia Podcast audio/video interview with Larry Garfield
  13. PHP: Getting the job done, really easily – Acquia Podcast audio/video interview with Stephan Hochdörfer
  14. Get more done, better & faster – together. – Acquia Podcast audio/video interview with Dustin Whittle
  15. New Wave PHP – Audio/video interview and conference session presentation with Lorna Jane Mitchell
  16. Writing secure PHP: "F.I.E.O." and more – Acquia Podcast audio/video interview with Chris Cornutt
  17. PHP: The entire world is your development team – Beth Tucker Long – Acquia Podcast audio/video interview

Image credit

Image by Elliott White III: http://www.flickr.com/photos/eliw/8806067761/in/photostream/

License: Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic (CC BY-SA 2.0)

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