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Simple Differences

1:40 pm on May 24, 2011 (gmt 0)

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Hi, I'm only writing this to ask why php has seemingly taken such a lead for web scripting. I've been in the Philippines for 2 1/2 years and have seen some ads by people looking for someone to do web based work and one of the requirements always seems to be php...I've asked some people about perl and am told I must be as old as I look. I don't know much about php (don't know what I wish/should know about perl at this point either) but have read a few tutorials and there doesn't seem to be much differene as far as the basics go. Of course you can put all your php documents in the http folder(who wants the http folder like an overstuffed sardine can?). I also notice they have quite a function library.....perhaps that's the glitter...one can call themself a programmer without really having to know as much as it would appear they really know. Just thoughts is all. I remember when perl forums were so crammed with questions the moderators probably didn't have much time for sleep and from the looks of things he could hibernate for weeks at a time now. I hope perl will always be a part of the web.
1:51 pm on May 24, 2011 (gmt 0)

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There's a perl-vs-php-thread around here somewhere, but I think php is so successful because many ready-to-run open source web applications are written in php. You install your wordpress and you wand to change something, you'll have to learn php.

The same goes for most content management systems, shop systems, wiki-software, groupware etc pp.
6:05 pm on May 24, 2011 (gmt 0)

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I hope perl will always be a part of the web.

+1 I hope it stays around for years. There is so much stuff you can do with Perl.

PHP has plenty of functions but in my experience I have found that sometimes, shared hosting have some features disabled. So I go back to Perl.

I think php is so successful because many ready-to-run open source web applications are written in php

True. The propagation of PHP and usage does not mean that the same amount of people "know how to write php scripts".
4:58 pm on May 25, 2011 (gmt 0)

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The simple difference? PHP has many pre-defined functions that Perl coders must code by hand or refer to library methods to do. Hence, when you pass a variable to stripslashes or something you really don't understand what it's doing, just the outcome, and when the outcome is not what you expect, you can't dig into the code to understand it.

I hate that about PHP.

IMO PHP has taken the lead because it's so much easier to learn. Very little messing about with permissions and a hugely reduced knowledge set for understanding real programming.

For the same reason, the phrase "a little bit of knowledge is dangerous" - I mean really *really* dangerous - stands true. A large portion of these coders don't cleanse input, insert form data directly into their database from post, use the same form field names as their database table names . . . and while all these atrocities are possible in Perl, they are not as rampant. incrediBill made a funny comment last week - "don't you know Wordpress is ancient Egyptian for 'hack me'?"

I get the Perl aversion reaction all the time. This is usually the first thing out of the mouth of someone trying to steal clients. "Perl is old technology, it needs to be upgraded to PHP." Thee is nothing that needs upgrading in Perl. The problem really is that most PHP coders are clueless about Perl and discount it accordingly. Really immature, I think. :-)

The really funny thing is that when PHP first came out, we described it as "like, Perl, but in the page." I do most of my work in PHP now simply because I don't have the energy to fight the tide, but given a choice I'll do it in Perl. Besides, there is a huge market in fixing all those busted-butt PHP scripts.

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