Programming
Article
By Harry Fuecks

PHP Predictions for 2005

By Harry Fuecks

Well the year’s almost done. I was planning a look back over 2004 but… time and motivation have failed to coincide.

2004 in short: probably the two most significant events were the release of PHP5 last July and the arrival of Planet PHP, back in January, more as a symbol of blogging becoming mainstream in the PHP community. Otherwise it just kept on storming up that hill.

Update: completely forgot (it’s been a year). There’s Derick’s entertaining (and no doubt controversial) summary to come (thanks for the reminder). As a taster, here’s 2003 and 2002.

Far more fun is taking some wild stabs at 2005…

– With the release of 5.0.6 in… July 2005, PHP5 will start making its presence really felt, rolling its way out to web hosts while better known PHP applications will start taking advantage of PHP5 specific functionality.

– Of the thirteen new reserved words added by PHP5, anecdotal evidence will suggest that no more than half are being used in the real world.

– In January 2005 PHP will win an award as “Programming Language of the Year, 2004”

– The Holy Wars between the dynamic four (Perl, Python, PHP and Ruby) will finally dry up and developers from all four communities will start sharing ideas and looking for ways to interoperate, with the occasional squawked reminder of things to come. Leading into…

– A surprising number of new projects written in other languages that generate PHP, taking advantage of its easy deployment and ever growing installed base plus the fact that it was always a template language anyway.

– PHP will have a small but useful role in building P2P networks.

– The words “PHP” and “security” will be whipped up into a whirlwind between intelligent discussion and FUD, spurred by further worms and PHP fans. The magic number 0644 will prevent the world from ending and ModSecurity will start making the rounds of web hosts. Meanwhile efforts will be directed towards PHP source code analysis tools and the average PHP salary will increase…

– Another PHP-powered hit will have the “(ad)justify my salary” crowd talking about the “new” paradigm: a RESTy, SOAy, dynamicy, touchy, feely kinda of a thing; rich-but-thin and with nice, soft edges. Real work will continue regardless.

– At least one well known PHP application will spring a back-end administration interface rendered entirely with XUL. Another will spring a Firefox extension.

– Google will wrap their Firefox homepage in XUL.

– Javascript will start to be taken seriously by many.

– Your mother will offer you her opinion on a Firefox extension you hadn’t even heard of.

I seem to have wandered off PHP there. Is anyone willing to offer some (more daring) predictions? Otherwise, happy new year for tomorrow night.

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