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Backward Compatibility? We’ve heard of it.

By Jules Szemere

Recent events have brought about PHP’s biggest PR disaster to date, with yet more backward-compatibility bugs being marked bogus and such helpful advice from PHP’s inner circle as “…just stfu, okay?”.

This is the latest in a trend that is raising the ire of many of PHP’s brightest developers and casts a worrying shadow over the future of PHP as a serious web application platform. Many have pointed out how difficult it is to maintain claims of PHP’s enterprise readiness when said enterprise projects stop functioning after a PHP point “upgrade”.

There appears to be a noticeable exodus from the skilled top ranks of PHP developers to other community driven languages (Python, Ruby et al) in recent months. What will the future PHP landscape be like if/when the Marcus’s say enough is enough?

Will a shrinking pool of talented PHP open source developers create new opportunities for commercial PHP software production? Is this perhaps exactly what Zend is looking for?

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