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Ovid (2709)

Ovid
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Stuff with the Perl Foundation. A couple of patches in the Perl core. A few CPAN modules. That about sums it up.

Journal of Ovid (2709)

Monday August 01, 2005
12:53 AM

$OSCON[0]

[ #26003 ]

$OSCON[-2] was spent in the company of Schwern, Bill Odom and Josh Heumann (the current pdx.pm leader). It was a nice dinner and good chance to catch up.

$OSCON[-1] had little to do with OSCON, but I came home to find Schwern and David Adler chatting. I served the last of my 15 year Laphraiog and much merriment ensued.

Today, oddly enough, was spent largely in the company of a bunch of PHP folk that I ran into at the beer festival. There were a couple of them who seemed very hostile towards Perl (as many Perl folk are hostile towards PHP, I'm hardly in a position to blame anyone), but many of them were far savvier about programming than many Perl programmers would give them credit for. These aren't script kiddies we're talking about. They're serious programmers who care about doing good work.

I also chatted with Marcus Börger for a while and discovered that he has a much better understanding of OO than most programmers out there. Then I discovered that he's the speaker for the PHP OO tutorial. A bit of further digging revealed that he's been around the block a few times. How many Perl folk know anyone associated with PHP? We're shooting ourselves in the foot by not paying attention.

It truly dismays me that folks get so entrenched in their pseudo-religious programming wars. There's so much to learn from different programming styles and cultures. Heck, even though many folks dismiss PHP as a "web only" language, there's a reason that it's over taken Perl in this extremely public area. We should learn from this.

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  • I reckon the number one reason why PHP has taken over from Perl in the web space is simply deployment. Compare installing (say) wordpress to any mod_perl app om this planet. Then consider setting up a development version. In the same server. It rapidly gets very difficult.

    The mod_perl architecture is oriented towards speed, not necessarily simplicity. Whilst this is good in some ways, it's definitely offputting to beginners.

    -Dom

  • I also chatted with Marcus Börger for a while and discovered that he has a much better understanding of OO than most programmers out there. Then I discovered that he's the speaker for the PHP OO tutorial. A bit of further digging revealed that he's been around the block a few times. How many Perl folk know anyone associated with PHP? We're shooting ourselves in the foot by not paying attention.

    Yeah, PHP isn't really quite as terrible as many people say. Especially now that it has a decent OO syste

    • In addition, it has not just one, but two built-ins for calculating the date of Easter: easter_date() [php.net] and easter_days() [php.net.]. It's hard to beat, that way.

      But, seriously: its OO system is pretty decent.

      In comparison to Perl, I do find standard Perl's flattening of lists, much easier to work with than PHP's arrays. Very often, it results in a much small number of required code lines for selected snippets in Perl than in PHP, for the same functionality.

      PHP's popularity has much more to do with its ease of deployme
      • PHP's popularity has much more to do with its ease of deployment, than with the lanuage itself. Because superior, it is not.

        Superior to what? If I could easily write in any language I would probably still be using Lisp for most of my code :-)

        Given a choice between PHP and Perl I'd certainly pick Perl. Given a choice between PHP and Java - I'm not so sure.

        Yeah it's hideously idiosyncratic in places, but it's got a vaguely decent OO system (in some ways better than Perl's) and it's sitting on every w

        • I don't think PHP is a toy language, but you seem to be saying PHP5 is the answer, and PHP5 is not "sitting on every web host on the planet". And the Easter builtins seem more likely to be useful than the builtins for the French revolutionary calendar [php.net].
          • but you seem to be saying PHP5 is the answer

            That wasn't my intent. It's a non-trivial improvement certainly, but you can still write reasonable code without that much effort in PHP4.

            PHP3 on the other hand :-)

            I'm just agreeing with Ovid that the seeming instinctual reaction of some Perl developers to start frothing at the mouth and spitting venom at the merest hint that PHP can do useful stuff does more harm than good.

    • PHP is terrible. It is terrible much in the way that shell is terrible.

      I write quite a bit of shell.

  • It's been years since I've seen a holy-war between open-source technologies. I'm sure they still happen, but thankfully not in my neck of the woods.

    Australia seems to be very good at having combined open source conferences [osdc.com.au], combined user group meetings [osdc.com.au] and even combined drinks [perl.org]. We are at one with our open source sisters and brothers or at least nobody is game to play up while I'm watching. I'm glad to hear that similar get-togethers are happening, at least informally, in both the nothern and s

  • While I'm not in attendance this year, I spent the last two OSCONs with a nice mix of both Perl and PHP folk. Two of them were Geoff [perl.org] and Chris Shiflett [shiflett.org], who actually went on to present a talk called Testing PHP with Perl at ApacheCon. And Chris even drove up with us to YAPC::NA last year, just to hang out (and drink til 5 AM). It's nice to stir the melting pot of programmers every once in a while.