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PHP's 20th Birthday

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Apparently it's PHP's 20th birthday today, well according to various chatter on the Interweb anyway, and people are digging out their memories of when they first came to it. I must have been a fairly early adopter I think. I'm not sure precisely when I started playing with it but by 2000 I'd fallen in love with it.

By then I was writing serious code in PHP and wrote an article about it for PC Network Advisor (the text of which was subsequently licensed, without my consent to AbleStable, although that at least means it's still available on the Web) for which I got paid a few hundred quid.

As for coding I had been pottering about with PHP but what I really needed was a Content Management System and in those early days the few available Open Source ones required you to have root access, something which I didn't have on the server we were then using at UK Shells (we did have shell access but as a non-root user along with a LAMP stack). So I wrote my own CMS in PHP called Opus which I Open Sourced (and for a while it was quite widely used until the big players arrived) as well as using for our own sites.

And indeed Opus is still what is driving this web site today and although the core code changes very regularly there's probably still odd bits in there which haven't changed much in the last fifteen years.

But PHP had been pretty good to be since my stroke in 2002, keeping me amused and bringing me in a little income.

In recent times it seems to have become a rather unfashionable language. Meanwhile I seem to be spending more and more time coding in JavaScript and ... guess what ... that now seems to be suffering from the same sort of brickbats. I'm starting to wonder if it's my fault.

Tags: web design Written 08/06/15

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