The Developer Day | Staying Curious



Who is Pablo Picasso in PHP?

I’ve been developing web applications for quite a while now. And overs years it became as a form of art for me. Creating maintainable, performant, scalable, secure and highly available web applications trully requires a lot of knowledge and experience.

It’s easy to say some applications are better than others. Like paintings or music. Some are masterpieces and some are just a pile of crap. Maybe it’s just me but I think that it’s easy to learn what *good* music is, who the *greatest* painters are and see their work and learn something. So I dare to ask the question. Is it the same with web development?

And if you think what i’m thinking you are thinking then … Yes there are open source web projects! And yes some of them are great! But what kind of projects are these projects really?

There’s phpBB. The famous php forum. It’s crap inside. And there’s phpMyAdmin .. it’s also a view of art that you want to wash your eyes with a bleech after. Even though I use it everyday. OK I’m choosing bad examples here. Lets take … WordPress? Well it’s better .. But really? It’s still not a master piece. You can learn more than from others but still not much. And then there are content management systems like Drupal and others which also creeps me out. And finally iI see frameworks. I personally love the ZendFramework. I think it’s one of the greatest things that happened to PHP in recent years. But it’s a framework! You can’t find there any working models, controllers, web services and such. Ofcourse you can find a lot of *other stuff * there  to learn from (like how to create libraries, components or frameworks).

Yes there are great books, blogs, conferences, your company projects. It adds up. But I want to find out who is Pablo Picasso in PHP. I want to see his work and say to myself .. “God! He’s a genius! I love it! It’s so simple and elegant. Why didn’t I do it the same way before?” I think it is healthy for one to evaluate himself among the best and see how far the road he is.

What do you think?

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1 Comment for Who is Pablo Picasso in PHP?

Rytis | November 13, 2008 at 12:33 PM

I think PHP genius is a person who can hide PHP face. That means hiding poor OO support, poor naming conventions and milions of version bugs. After few years being with strong OOP support language I see that PHP used against its nature. PHP had to be simple scripting language.
Ok, you can change language to pure OOP but if you leave backward compatibility with non OOP versions most of the ordinary programmers will use their bad habits and some of the new features. Programs will be same crap.

With PHP should be done something like Adobe made to Flash ActionScript 3.0. It was raised to strict OOP language. With this raise, most of the programmers who wanted to use new features, had to raise themselves too - learn design patterns, best practises and lots of other stuff. Most of them began programming while they were just a graphic designers and animators (like me).

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