PHP three letters that together constitute the name of one of the world’s most popular programming languages for Web development, the PHP Hypertext Preprocessor. Flexible, scalable, extensible, stable, open—PHP is all of these and more, which is why it’s one of the most popular programming language in the world. Ask me why I like PHP and I will give you thousands of reason why I like PHP. PHP is used by over twenty million websites and more than the third of the web server. As an open-source project, PHP is completely free, its simple design, great organized modules programming and debugging with it a pleasure. Its popularity can be gauged by the fact that todays leading websites like Facebook.com, Twitter.com, Wikipedia.org, WordPress.org are built using PHP.
Here I will tell you why students should go for PHP and some awesome advantage of PHP. If you are familiar with other languages such as ASP.NET or JSP you might wondering why PHP is so special and what makes it different from other competitors.
- Open Source The major advantage of PHP is it is open source project, this means its totally free. The language is developed by the worldwide team of volunteers and you did not have to pay for its licensing or did not have to invest in expensive software. This reduces software development cost without affecting flexibility or reliability. And one of the major advantage of open source PHP is that if any bugs occurs it is solve by the worldwide community and sometimes within a few hours.
- Cross Platform PHP is cross platform this means you can use PHP on any operating systems like Mac OS Linux, Unix and Microsoft Windows. This feature is extremely in used when operating in a cross platform environment.
- Object-Oriented Support PHP version 5 has well-designed object-oriented features. If you learned to program in Java or C++, you will find the features (and generally the syntax) that you expect, such as inheritance, private and protected attributes and methods, abstract classes and methods, interfaces, constructors, and destructor.
- Ease of Use “Simplicity is the greatest sophistication” said by Leonardo Da Vinci and by that measure PHP is an extremely sophisticated programming language. Its syntax is clear and easy to use and it comes with the documentation for 5000+ functions
- Community Support One of the best thing about community supported language is that it includes the imagination and creativity of thousands of developers across the world. The PHP community built hundreds of ready to use widgets and extensions that developer can use to add more functionality to PHP.
- Third Party Application Support One of the advantage of PHP is that its support for wide range of databases including MySQL, PostgreSQL, Oracle and Microsoft SQL Server. PHP supports more than fifteen database engines and it includes common API for database languages.
This doesn’t just stop here. PHP’s extensible architecture allows developers to write custom add-ons to the language, with the result that PHP developers can today read and write the GIF, JPEG, and PNG image formats; send and receive e-mail using the SMTP, IMAP, and POP3 protocols; deal with Web services using the SOAP and REST protocols; validate input using Perl regular expressions; and create and manipulate PDF documents. Heck, PHP can even access C libraries, Java classes, and COM objects and take advantage of program code written for these languages!
Some Mind blowing Statistics of PHP
Statistics are taken from the leading survey website W3tech. It uses the top million sites based on Alexa Rank to calculate the statistics.
The following table shows the growth in PHP language and its clears here that its growth is much greater than other competitor scripting languages used over the web.
The following table shows the percent usage of the server-side programming languages and with no doubt PHP is the leading technology used by over 81.7 %.
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