Friday, July 21, 2006

CNET Article

I'd like to take this opportunity to respond to Edin's blog about what is stated in the CNET interview. As I mentioned in my response to Edin's blog entry, in the interview I never called out PHP 6 as a Zend product. I *did* talk about what's coming down the pipeline for PHP and mentioned that both Zend and Yahoo! have been contributing to the Unicode effort (which is true). One of my aims is to promote PHP proliferation and adoption, and talking about the support from organizations like Zend and Yahoo helps with that.

Zend is a commercial company working in the open source PHP community, as are Yahoo, IBM, Oracle and many others. There should not be an inherent conflict in that situation. We are very careful to acknowledge our relationship with the community – we point to the fact that there is such a large community of contributors to PHP as one of the key strengths of the technology (as can be seen in most of my presentations). We are also continually contributing significant Zend resources to the PHP community, working on PHP, Framework and the Eclipse IDE projects.

Our commercial activity is mostly around enabling larger corporations adopt PHP in a professional way, helping with architecture, training, development tools and runtime tools. The fact that these corporations adopt PHP further strengthens the community and creates opportunities for all of its participants.

Edin’s blog in part builds on a pre-existing perception that Zend claims more credit for PHP than it deserves. I acknowledge that there have been some unfortunate statements in the past that may have contributed to that perception. But that was years ago, and we have become very sensitive to that. Zend did not invent PHP, does not own PHP, etc. That goes for Zeev and I and all other Zenders. When we introduce ourselves we say that we are leading contributors to PHP, and I think we can make that case.

It’s also important to understand that it is *not* in Zend’s interest to claim that we are the only company behind PHP, that would make PHP look much smaller than it is which would be very counter productive to our quest for increasing PHP proliferation.

I think Stephen Shankland’s coverage of PHP and Zend are very positive, most of what he wrote is accurate. He may not be aware of the sensitivities in the community and so he describes PHP 6 in a way that it sounds like a Zend product. I did not say it, but Stephen writes the article from handwritten notes from the interview most probably a few hours later, so it is easy to see how that happens.

We will continue to promote PHP, the community, the contributors to it, the corporate support for it, and so forth. We are committed to make the whole community stronger, and will give continue to give credit to its many contributors.