Re: [PHP-DEV] PHP's declining(?) popularity

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September 16, 2019 15:11 (Chase Peeler)
On Mon, Sep 16, 2019 at 10:12 AM Benjamin Eberlei <>

> > > On Mon, Sep 16, 2019 at 3:47 PM Chase Peeler <> > wrote: > >> On Sun, Sep 15, 2019 at 8:14 AM Zeev Suraski <> wrote: >> >> > On Sun, Sep 15, 2019 at 1:15 PM Olumide Samson <> >> > wrote: >> > >> > > I also don't agree with the index and all its statistics >> > > >> > >> > I'm not sure what you mean by 'all its statistics'. Mostly everything >> on >> > the methodology page is fluff, which may be purposely there to hide the >> > only part that really matters: >> > ---------------- >> > >> > The ratings are calculated by counting hits of the most popular search >> > engines. The search query that is used is >> > >> > +" programming" >> > >> > --------------- >> > >> > It's a simplistic measure of an arbitrary search term in search engines >> - >> > nothing more. It's completely, 100.0% meaningless. >> > >> > >> > > , yet I'm not invalidating it as it is a much-viewed index globally. >> > > >> > >> > I am. It's quite remarkable that people are paying any level of >> attention >> > to it whatsoever, and indeed it's saddening. But the fact that many >> people >> > believe something doesn't make it true, if the evidence clearly suggest >> it >> > isn't. >> > >> > According to the index : >> > > "Till the end of 2009 everything went fine, but soon after that PHP >> was >> > > going downhill from 10% to 5% market share in 2 years’ time. In 2014 >> it >> > > halved again to 2.5%. >> > > >> > >> > Trying to correlate the TIOBE index with anything that happened in the >> PHP >> > world is akin to trying to correlate the results of rand() with the >> weather >> > forecast. The two aren't related at all. Building any thesis on the >> > foundation of the TIOBE index is like trying to build a brick house on a >> > muddy soil. Heck, like trying to build a brick house in the middle of >> the >> > ocean. There's nothing to build on. >> > >> > While it's extremely difficult to measure the popularity of languages, >> > RedMonk's slightly more relevant measurements (GitHub projects and Stack >> > Overflow questions) suggest it's been doing well over the last decade - >> > right up there in the top 5 with no meaningful decline. What Mike and >> > others pointed out are areas where we should consider investing if we >> want >> > to *increase* the popularity beyond what it already is (which is what >> > happened with Python). >> > >> > Zeev >> > >> >> While I think some excellent suggestions have been made on this thread, >> one >> thing that I feel Mike's sources show (and maybe it's confirmation bias) >> is >> that any decline in popularity that PHP might be experiencing (for the >> sake >> of argument, we'll pretend such a decline does exist) isn't because PHP >> isn't strict enough. It's because it doesn't do a lot of the things that >> languages like Python can do. If this is the case, we don't reverse the >> trend by making our language more syntactically or behaviorally like the >> other languages out there. We reverse it by supporting the features that >> are currently lacking, or, adding features that other languages don't >> have. >> >> First, you say it yourself, but the sources are biased, so i am not sure > any of your conclusions hold valid. But lets pretent they do, like you did. > > I was saying the index that was cited was wrong. I wasn't questioning the articles that Mike linked to. However, even if I was, it's not
contradictory to claim that someone's facts are wrong, yet still address them as if they were not for the sake of the argument.
> Yes PHP does a lot of things that languages like Python can do, for > example alwayse throwing an error when you access an undefined variable, > which is totally something that python does. > > Yes, but when someone is looking for a language to use, they aren't looking for the one that throws the most errors. I'm looking for one that
provides me the features I need and is easy to use. Python seems to fit that bill for a lot of people now given the resources they provide for the beginners and the features they offer. While we might can argue about the benefits of throwing an error for an uninitialized variable, I would be willing to put money on the fact that very few people are picking the language because of that feature. If I'm looking for a language to teach someone, maybe I go with that. I think an argument could also be made that allowing them to focus on the logical thinking aspect of programming, rather than the small details of boilerplate code.
> Newcomers do make a lot of simple mistakes in the beginning, so being > strict on enforcing variables exist is something that makes it easier for > newcomers. >
I find unreadable code to be a big issue. Maybe we should require code be indented like python, and not allow the program to run if there is even a single extra white space anywhere. You know what else is great about PHP? You actually CAN configure it RIGHT NOW to throw an Error on an uninitialized variable. You don't actually have to force every other PHP developer to work in that type of environment in order to do so, either.
> >> -- >> Chase Peeler >> >> >
-- Chase Peeler