PHP Web Projects Continue to Impress Me

Have you seen WordPress? It's a PHP based weblogging tool that's really, really impressive. It's super-simple to download and set up (270kb zip? Are you kidding me?), has all the bells and whistles, including a really impressive admin tool and even features like per post Lat/Long info.

Matt actually discovered it back in November, but I missed his review:

Wow. I installed WordPress a few minutes ago, and the whole process was one of the easiest and quickest blog installs that I've ever done. I can probably set up a MT blog in my sleep. Blosxom just takes a few minutes but lacks Whizzy menus and user-friendly stuff. It was as simple as uncompressing WordPress, creating a MySQL database, editing about 4 fields in a php file and a few configuration clicks.

It was really quick. It's really slick.


There's an online version to test at OpenSourceCMS. Just login with admin/demo to try it out. Very cool.

What is it about PHP that makes it so good for web projects? On the face of it, it looks like half-ass Perl or or scriptlet-based JSP pages. I mean all the bad things we're supposed to be getting away from with MVC and JSTL is included in PHP. Yet, the language is used quite efficiently and well. Yahoo uses it for a ton of projects, all the best web-based BBS systems are written in PHP and now WordPress impresses as well.

Once again I ask - why is Java web programming not keeping up? Why are Java web projects so bloated (I've got 5+MB of .jar files in my current web project and I think more are coming). Why are the pages so difficult to set up, maintain. Why do Java programmers insist on putting more logic in standard Java classes that make me have to touch ant, wait for compile and many times reboot my web server in order to test?

I think it's because PHP programmers want to get stuff done and Java programmers are geeks who want do stuff the "right" way. I'm getting sick of being in the latter camp.


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