Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Zend Developer Zone 3.0(?)

While Zend Developer Zone (a.k.a DevZone) perhaps hasn’t gotten as much attention as Zend Framework or the Eclipse PHP Development Tools (PDT) project, it’s an essential piece of the three pronged community-focused strategy Zend launched with the PHP Collaboration Project back in 2005.

DevZone takes an important place alongside Zend Framework and our Eclipse-based tooling as an equal partner in collaboration.  Open source companies’ tail wind is the community—and the learning and mentoring environment that comes with it. We have always strived to help support the ongoing process of cross pollination among the community which has truly matured the PHP eco-system as a whole. Professional content, leadership, and expertise associated with the very best practices of PHP are the key to what has made PHP a mature Enterprise-ready Web solution.

When I started working on the concept of the DevZone back in 2005 I called it I actually still have the presentations which I used internally to get the necessary buy in. I felt that in order to mature PHP, that building both a professional Web application framework and supporting the de-facto standard Eclipse framework was not enough. We needed to create a platform which enables our users, our partners, our customers and Zend to deliver best practices and methodology to the community. We have been blessed with the many contributions DevZone has received so far both from individuals and industry heavyweights like IBM and Adobe.

We have also been fortunate to have a line of great community advocates for PHP, from Jayson Minard, to Cal Evans, and I’m now excited that Eli White ( ) will be joining Zend. The Zend Editor-In-Chief role or “Community Guy” as Eli puts it is a tough role. It is designed for somewhat of a super human who has strong community building skills, editorial skills, deep PHP technical knowledge, broad software knowledge with an ability to bridge out into other communities, strong presentation skills and the list goes on. Surely a hard role to fill. While none of us are super humans I think Eli is really a great fit for this role and has strengths in all of these areas. While Eli’s predecessors have done an excellent job it is always the responsibility of the next generation to take things to the next level. I have no doubt that Eli has the energy and the talent to do that. I personally am looking very much forward to working closely with him because as Eli’s predecessors can attest, the community role and the developer zone are very close to my heart.

Please welcome me in wishing Eli well in his new position! I am sure he’s already busy cooking up some interesting ideas.