A vote in support of short tags, although last time I checked they were not removed in PHP6 (and I hate to see this brought up once more). On top of that, the supposed XML conflict argument is not fully thought through, since full PHP tags are not XML compliant either:

<?php echo "?>"; ?>

In the above example, XML parsers would do this:

Processing directive: <?php echo "?>
Text node: "; ?
Parse error: >

As you see, it's a much simpler world when we realize PHP was never supposed to be XML in the first place. However it was supposed to be a preprocessing templating engine, and so we need to keep it optimized for that.

Stan Vassilev

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