Why PHP is so much more popular for web-development

Bruno Desthuilliers bruno.42.desthuilliers at wtf.websiteburo.oops.com
Thu Jul 26 15:10:25 CEST 2007

walterbyrd a écrit :
> On Jul 22, 12:17 am, Bruno Desthuilliers
> <bdesth.quelquech... at free.quelquepart.fr> wrote:
>> Either you are a casual user with 101 web
>> development skills trying to set up your personal home page
> But this, sort of, brings me back to my original point. Nobody starts
> out being advanced.

Nope. But some start out being already seasoned programmers, even if 
they never done web development !-)

> There are  substantial differences in cost, and
> deployment, between PHP and Python.

Depends on the context. But true, it's easier to get PHP than Python on 
a budget shared hosting (except possibly for python cgi).

> It is much easier to get started
> with PHP.

If you are not programmer and don't know anything about the HTTP 
protocol, yes, indeed.

> And once somebody has started with PHP, that person is
> likely to stay with PHP.

FWIW, I started web programming with PHP. Then I quickly started to look 
for Python-based solutions.

> Most PHP developers do not see a compelling
> reason to start all over again with Python.

If I judge by the average quality of the php code I've seen so far - and 
I've seen quite a lot - most "PHP developers"  don't know zilch about 
both programming and the web. The others are usually not "PHP 
developers" but developers using PHP - which is not exactly the same 
thing. There are, of course, well-designed, well-written php apps, but 
that's certainly not the most common case.

> BTW: I have a certain amount of respect for PHP,

I don't.

> and PHP developers.

That's another problem.

> PHP5 is a big step forward over PHP4.

Because it introduced a Java-like object model ?

> And, there have been substantial
> web projects completed with PHP

Indeed. As well as with Java and Perl. A good programmer is usually able 
to write good code whatever the language.

> - probably more so than with Python.

There certainly are more "substantial" web projects written in Java than 
in Python, and believe me, deploying a Java web app is orders of 
magnitude more difficult and costly than with a Python one, whatever the 
Python framework used. Heck, compared to any Java solution, even Zope 
looks lightweight and agile.

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