PHP and extensions

This week I’ve had to do some PHP work, something that is becoming less and less common as I use other languages. Part of my work required setting up some extensions for PHP. PECL is a nightmare, requiring so many development libraries to be installed (and in some cases compiled from scratch) to get the modules to work. For such a mature language it’s quite amazing how difficult it is to get some basic functionality to work. Anyone who’s worked with Python or Ruby will know how easy it is to add packages / gems to the language, and in Ruby’s case how easy it is to run multiple versions concurrently with little trouble.

On the other hand PHP’s new documentation site is an improvement, though to be fair if arguments were in a predictable order (as they are in other languages) you wouldn’t need to refer to the documentation half as much.

Today I see that PHP is removing JSON as a standard extension. This only confirms to me that moving away from PHP is a Good Thing [TM]


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