It was fitting that the speaker chosen to kick off the first ever New Zealand PHP Conference was Rasmus Lerdorf. Rasmus is known for having gotten the PHP project off the ground in 1995 and has contributed to a number of other open source projects over the years. He was an infrastructure architect at Yahoo! for more than 7 years and joined Etsy in 2012. Rasmus's presentation covered an interesting background to how PHP evolved from a templating system into a coding language as well as insights into the greater purpose his role at Esty provides.
5 Highlights from Rasmus Lerdorf
- PHP’s naming scheme & argument order was always vertically consistent (e.g. strlen matches C’s strlen specification), which means it’s confusing within the language, but makes sense for C developers
- It was intended that people would see the flexibility of the PHP API and extend it by writing more C extensions for the language, but instead it grew into a community of PHP developers, with only a few people writing the C extensions
- There are migration pages for jumping between PHP versions (examples: PHP 5.4 to PHP 5.5, PHP 5.5 to PHP 5.6)
- PHP now has a semi-official spec (courtesey of Facebook), which is awesome: https://php.net/spec
- PHP 5.5, 5.6 and 5.7 all have reasonably significant performance enhancements, and we should leverage these within SS
Bonus: Rasmus grew up in a town where this was downtown (link provides full slides from Rasmus's presentation)