On Thu, Nov 11, 2010 at 08:51, Robert Cummings <rob...@interjinn.com> wrote:
> Yeah, that and some Gateway with a Common Interface.

    My point was that there is now and never was any such PHP project
known as pre-hypertext preprocessor.  It originated as Personal Home
Page Tools (PHP Tools) and Forms Interpreter (FI) --- the former was a
series of C binaries, the latter was a CGI wrapper that actually
preprocessed straight HTML by hopping in and out of <!--HTML
Comments--> using SSI.  For a short while, if memory serves me
correctly, a version of the package was also named Personal Home Page
Construction Kit.  Eventually the packages merged into PHP/FI, and a
rewrite was done sometime during 1997, I believe, which became PHP/FI
2.0.  I first started using it back in 1996 for quick and simple tasks
where Perl would be a bit overkill.

    The part I can't remember clearly is whether PHP/FI2 was done in
1996 or 1997, though, because I do remember it was the fall of 1997
when PHP3 came out, and it blew me away.  It sucked a bit having to
now learn how to use the new PHP to build a page, but damned if it
wasn't a trillion times easier to work with than Perl, right from the
get-go.  I remember being excited by the fact that I could rewrite a
simple flat-file database Perl program I originally wrote in about
three days in under two hours with PHP.  From that point on, I was
hooked on it, despite its quirky recursive-acronym name --- PHP:
Hypertext Preprocessor.

    So when I asked if "pre-hypertext preprocessor" meant Perl, it
could well have been Python, C/C++ on SSI, Tcl/Tk, or anything....
anything, that is, that came "pre-" PHP.

    That said, I have seen references to PHP being named
"Pre-Hypertext Preprocessor," but that would be incorrect anyway.  The
HTML (HyperText Markup Language) could be preprocessed, so that much
is fine.... but "pre-hypertext" would be truly amusing.  Any request
to a web page is presently made via HTTP (HyperText Transfer
Protocol), and any text displayed on any electronic device with
embedded references (also known as hyperlinks).

    So any language that could pre-process pre-hypertext would either
have the unique ability to foresee the future, the mundane ability to
"pre-process" plain text (or request headers or anything prior to the
data being classified as hypertext), or the disconcerting ability to
modify reality as we know it.  And why bother to do that when you
could just <%= go elsewhere. %>? ;-P

    (It's felt like Friday all day.)

</Daniel P. Brown>
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