I currently work in the capacity of Software Engineer at a reputed company in Sri Lanka. I'm most keen in J2EE Technologies and love working with open source libraries which fit my project needs. Very interested in the NoSQL concept and experimenting with various products to find a good blend for our projects within the company. Part time freelancer. Avid contributor in the stackoverflow arena. Android is another area which I am looking at with very keen interest as I believe mobile development is the way forward. Dinuka is a DZone MVB and is not an employee of DZone and has posted 24 posts at DZone. You can read more from them at their website. View Full User Profile

What I Love About PHP

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First of all I must say im relatively new to the whole PHP scene. Coming from an OOP background with mostly Java/C++ experience I must say the transition was not rough as I expected it to be. Unfortunately I have not been able to code in PHP at an industrial level but use it for many of my freelance projects which has been very productive up to now. So I would love to highlight why I love PHP and why I think others who aren't using it yet, should give it a try.

  • WAMP
                WAMP is one of the best bundled package i have seen. Right out of the box you got yourself an Apache server, mysql database and PHP core. So within a matter of minutes you are ready to write some productive code without having to deal with environment setup issues. And you have a wide variety of bundled packages to chose from which fits you needs. Need a mysql client to go through the database? No need of installing another sql client. Just type http://localhost/phpmyadmin/ and your ready to create your database schemas.

  • Its Interpreted
               All Java folks know how much of a pain it is to compile your project if you are working on a large scale application. You just do a small change and stare at your command line as Maven or Ant destroys 2-5 minutes on average of your precious time. I'm not emphasizing on build related problems here but the truth of the fact is there is no matter what, you do waste a portion of your time compiling code. Whats great about PHP is the fact that it is interpreted.  You just do a change, go to your browser and refresh. That's it. Saved me a ton of time in many of my freelance projects.

              Of course there are PHP compilers if anyone ever needs it. Some say it increases the performance but I have personally not been able to try it. Facebook has written a nice tool that converts PHP code to C code called HipHop.

             The information presented in this site is just out of this world. Anything and everything you will ever need when working with PHP is here so there is no hassle what so ever. When I need a function i just search it up here and the community has been very active with various people suggesting better ways of calling various functions which has been very helpful to me.

  • No need of a special IDE
             Myself and many I know just use Notepad++ for our coding with PHP.  Its just easy to use and switch between different source files. I don't think anyone ever needs an IDE when coding in PHP though there are some very useful IDEs out there as listed here.

            From PHP 5 they supported classes, object creation, constructors and the whole deal. This feature made it very easy for me in the transition phase from java to php. It was more or less a seamless transition.

  • Plethora of frameworks to choose 
           You got Zend, cake php, symphony and so many more frameworks. Its just amazing. If one does not fit your need you just move to the next one and try it out. The learning curve is also not that steep as well. The MVC architecture introduced by these frameworks make you feel at home when coming from a struts background as myself. And the DAO layer separation introduced in some frameworks is also a huge plus point for me.

I'm just starting out with PHP and i believe more will be added to this list as time goes on. If any PHP pros can share their opinion on why you love the language it is highly appreciated.


From http://dinukaroshan.blogspot.com/2011/08/what-i-love-about-php.html


Published at DZone with permission of Dinuka Arseculeratne, author and DZone MVB.

(Note: Opinions expressed in this article and its replies are the opinions of their respective authors and not those of DZone, Inc.)



Michal Xorty replied on Mon, 2011/08/08 - 1:55pm

"no need for special IDE" Excuse me, but this is ridiculous. IDEs are here because they HELP you, not because you MUST use them. You have used clever words - "no need". Actually, there is no solid IDE for PHP that can be compared to Java IDEs. That's because such thing can't exists (because of dynamic typing of PHP).

Dinuka Arseculeratne replied on Tue, 2011/08/09 - 2:54am in response to: Michal Xorty

Hi Michael,


Maybe the point i was trying to convey was over shadowed by my choice of wording there. What i meant to say was the language syntax is easy enough that you usually do not have the need for an IDE. Sorry if it was offending in anyway :).. Thx for the comment. Cheers

Fabien Bergeret replied on Tue, 2011/08/09 - 4:32am

Agreed on one point: it painful for Java developers to have to rebuild the application for making it run...

For all the other points, it's also true in Java (when I started Java in 1995, there was no IDE, and I had to use Notepad :-( ).

One thing I miss in PHP: the debugger. Have to make some ugly 'echo'

Erwin Mueller replied on Tue, 2011/08/09 - 5:45am

PHP's syntax is easy, are you kidding? Do you know how many operators PHP have? 32 operators, then you have the typing mess in PHP, then the multitude of functions with foo_x, foo_x_better, real_foo_x, http://stackoverflow.com/questions/5578942/php-mysql-query-parameter-order random parameter order http://www.skyrocket.be/2009/05/30/php-function-naming-and-argument-order/ and many more issues: http://maurus.net/resources/programming-languages/php/

Sergio Sanchez replied on Tue, 2011/08/09 - 6:16am in response to: Fabien Bergeret

Use Netbeans for PHP + xdebug. It sometimes shocks me that even casual PHP developers are still coding in notepad(++) when there are real IDEs out there which make coding much simpler.

Henk De Boer replied on Tue, 2011/08/09 - 8:39am

Lamest. Post. Ever.

Felipe Lorenzo 6 replied on Tue, 2011/08/09 - 8:45am

You should try Play Framework http://www.playframework.org/. It's like PHP but uses Java. Not to mention, IDEs not necessary.

Dinuka Arseculeratne replied on Tue, 2011/08/09 - 9:40am

Thx guys for taking the time to leave a comment. This is my personal opinion and i have noted that im just getting started. So if i got on some ppl's nerves i apologize. That was not my intention with this article.


@Sergo - thx for the input. I did not know that netbeans supported PHP and debuggin.


Cheers guys....

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