Coming Back to PHP

Published March 25, 2013

I’ve been on a rather lengthy PHP hiatus. With my discover of Ruby on Rails (January 2012) and my foray into iOS development (starting November 2012), I haven’t had time to think about WordPress or PHP much lately. But in searching for a lightweight solution to a soon-to-be-published magazine’s website, I realized that a Ruby-based approach wasn’t going to work well. I like Rails and Sinatra, but managed Ruby hosting is very expensive, and my client needed an cost-effective solution.

So I decided to give PHP another try. It’s cheap, and I realized that much of what I had disliked about it in the past was the inner workings of WordPress. The folder structure of WordPress is poorly organized, theming and admin customization are laborious, and then there’s The Loop™. Does web development really need to be so confusing? After a bit of searching, I cam across Slim, a lightweight framework for PHP. It’s very similar in style to Sinatra, which I appreciate. And it has a good set of extras and an active community. It turned out to be just what I needed.

I still don’t love PHP. It has some pretty ugly syntax, it can be a little sluggish at times, and I don’t like how methods are scoped. But it’s not a bad language. It gets the job done.

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