Is PHP the natural upgrade path for ASP 3.0 / VB 6?

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At the risk of starting a flame war, got to get this off my chest.

Joel Spolsky recently posted a his feelings on How Microsoft Lost the API War; an article that’s currently kicking up a storm all over (alot of people listen to Joel). Well worth a read whatever your stance.

Among many points he mentions how VB.NET doesn’t support VB 6 and he concludes by saying;

The new API is HTML, and the new winners in the application development marketplace will be the people who can make HTML sing.

What I wonder is how ASP 3.0 developers feel about ASP.NET? ASP.NET is software architecture ideals applied, which is great, but I wonder how ASP 3.0 developers, of the type who could care less about OOP and are more interested in completing projects on time, feel about ASP.NET?

The phrase “porting an ASP application to PHP” seems to be popping up on the radar more and more these days, PHP supporting different programming paradigms (e.g. procedural, object oriented, functional) without forcing anything on you. In some ways PHP is so similar to ASP 3.0 that there’s even a ASP 2 PHP converter which isn’t perfect but at least something to get people started, if they’re new to PHP.

What prompts this is an anonymous comment on Randy Holloways blog (who works at Microsoft), Randy himself offering a response to Joel;

This post was finally enough to convince my boss that Microsoft doesn’t care about VB6 users. No one wants to learn more VB6. is just as complicated as C#. Moving to is more expensive than just redoing our entire system in PHP/HTML.

Compare that with the docs on Migrating from PHP 4 to PHP 5;

PHP 5 and the integrated Zend Engine 2 have greatly improved PHP’s performance and capabilities, but great care has been taken to break as little existing code as possible. So migrating your code from PHP 4 to 5 should be very easy. Most existing PHP 4 code should be ready to run without changes…

Flame on… ;)

Harry FuecksHarry Fuecks
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Harry Fuecks is the Engineering Project Lead at Tamedia and formerly the Head of Engineering at Squirro. He is a data-driven facilitator, leader, coach and specializes in line management, hiring software engineers, analytics, mobile, and marketing. Harry also enjoys writing and you can read his articles on SitePoint and Medium.

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