The Zend / PHP relationship

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So this is my first post after having slaved away over hot code for two weeks.  Well, two weeks off and on.  And it wasn't the PHP code, it was the JavaScript and CSS.  The PHP code was a snap… as it should be.  But this was a challenge nonetheless. So the question now is what to write about.  And given that this is a first post it will be one of those things that will be way down at the end of every search result and every tag list.  And since it is the first posting nobody will probably read it except for my Mom.

One of the things I've wanted to talk about is the relationship between Zend and the PHP community.  Given that Zend is commercial and the community is the community there can sometimes be friction.  This should be no surprise to anyone.  If you read over the mailing lists every once in a while someone talks about how Zend is holding PHP back and such.  It doesn't happen that often, but it does happen occasionally.

Having worked with Zend now for three and a half years I have had some time to think about how the PHP community and Zend relate to each other.  My views are my views and may or may not be shared by either Zend or the PHP community at large, but I see the relationship as primarily collaborative.  Sure, Zend makes money off of PHP, but so do a lot of people.  In fact the overall PHP-based capital ecosystem is incredibly huge.  Think of it.  PHP has a reputation as being a hap-hazardly thrown together bunch of C code written by a bunch of amateur developers.  First of all, anyone who reads the blogs of any of the core contributers, or listens to any of them at conferences, knows that these people are anything but amateur.  Secondly, the number of companies that are built around this "amateur" language would make its value in the multiple billions of dollars.  Heck, just counting Facebook you are looking at several billion dollars worth of valuation, and it is just one of many multiple thousands based off of PHP.  Yahoo, another one.  Not written entirely in PHP but a good portion of the front end has been.  IBM is on board with PHP, Oracle is on board with PHP.  Microsoft is on board with PHP.  The numbers are really quite astounding.  Unlike Linux, PHP did not get billions of dollars worth of software development sponsored by some large companies.  PHP was written by people who love doing it and has directly impacted hundreds of millions of people.

Where does that leave us here?  What I'm going to be doing here is talking about a lot of stuff that is Zend/PHP related.  Once you factor in Zend Server, Zend Studio, Zend Framework, etc. there is a lot of stuff to talk about.  And most of the time it will be code.  Writing like this is not what I am best at.  I enjoy having a problem in front of me, fixing it and sharing how I did it… as long as it wasn't JavaScript or CSS.  Those are just nuts.

So bear with me as I build this thing up.  There will be new features added to this site as we move along.  I am a big fan of eating your own dog food which means that you use your own stuff.  Here I am using our own stuff.  But it will take some time to get everything up and running.  So mind the construction.  There should be some good times ahead.

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