At 05:21 29-08-01, Manuel Lemos wrote:
>If when you mean pro-active you mean that's intentional and is all part
>of a plan,
>then  we agree. If you acted somehow to promote PHP and got some
>unexpected results
>(good or bad) that is still marketing although not pro-active.

Regardless of this definition, I meant the former.  It was quite 
intentional, we're working towards publishing articles about PHP and trying 
to get analysts to cover it.

>If you are going to descriminate sites based on subjective criteria,
>like matters of taste or points of view that vary greatly from person to
>person, that is bad because you will certainly leave out contributions
>that could help greatly PHP and in the end yourself.
>It would certainly would make you look arrogant if you get to be picky
>as if including some sites and not others you would be doing somebody
>else a favor when the promotion that PHP gets from the sites will always
>benefit you direct or indirectly.

But that's the problem, and that's why I think it's not necessarily a good 
idea.  Some people may feel it's arrogant, but it doesn't change the fact 
that some sites may result in PHP's brand going in the opposite 
direction.  Because there's no objective criteria and no jurisdiction, we 
won't have ways to avoid this, at least not without causing some people to 
feel very bad.

>If I were you I certainly would not rule out sites with content that
>overlaps others. Why not accept all sites that provide PHP articles? One
>site may not be as good or as complete as other today, but they may
>improve over time enough to be technically better than others that you
>picked before. What would you do then? Accept what you refused before
>and then discard what you accepted before? Doesn't seem to be a good

I think that you're forgetting where this whole discussion started.  If the 
idea is to make everybody feel good about themselves (which is a viable 
objective on its own) and be as 'fair' as possible, then what you wrote in 
this paragraph and in the two paragraphs before it makes perfect 
sense.  But that's not the goal you were talking about.  The goal is to 
push PHP, to market it, and to give it a good image.  Unfortunately, doing 
the 'nice-to-everybody' thing ('developer-oriented') does not go hand in 
hand with doing the right thing from a marketing perspective 
('consumer-oriented').  They're not mutually exclusive, not at all, but 
they're definitely not identical directions.

>Anyway, in a Web ring banner you only promote a site at each banner
>view. I don't see the problem of rotating banners of overlapped content.

The way I see it is that if it's too loose, it's useless.  It won't give 
PHP any professional feel or anything.  If it's more tight, then we're 
going to have to ensure that the sites are sync'd in terms of avoiding 
duplicate content, that they're all of good quality, etc.  This is *very* 
difficult to do in a world which is almost completely based on volunteer 
work.  I, for one, don't think we can demand *anything* from PHP community 
site webmasters - whatever they do to help PHP is good, and they should get 
to decide how much and in what ways they're willing to contribute.

> > Things like that are usually not that simple, or in other words, they're
> > easier said than done.  If done sloppily, they can have a negative
> > effect.  And doing them correctly requires substantial efforts.
>You sound bureacratic. You should feel honoured by the extra promotion
>that all the PHP content sites give you because your business depends on
>PHP acceptance in the market. Why make it hard for sites that are
>willing to help you in the end?

Because I'm trying to look at the goal and look how we can try to achieve 
it, and be as realistic as possible about our chances.  Using a screwdriver 
to hammer a nail doesn't work, and I think that thinking that this Web ring 
would do the job of marketing PHP is over-optimistic.
Honor has nothing to do with it, and I think it's a great thing that there 
are lots of PHP web sites and a strong community behind it.

>I think it is fair enough to make some base rules like "don't be too
>lame" (define "too lame"), but almost everybody should be accepted.

If we go that route, you can call it in many ways, but marketing is not one 
of them :)

>I guess you just say that because you were simply not affected by the
>major Internet layoffs that happened in the latest months, so you don't
>seem to have a great idea how bad this has been for so many people.
>Of course the Internet is not gone. It just happens that the number of
>companies with business depending on it was drastically reduced. So,
>there aren't so much employment and business opportinities as before.
>That's what I mean.

I'm quite aware of the serious slow down, I'm in the hi tech industry as 
well, remember? :)  It doesn't change the way the Web's future looks as a 
medium.  There was serious hype that caused a big balloon of hot air, which 
blew up.  But the medium itself was not hurt.  Apart of the .COM world, 
which wasn't making any money anyway, the internet infrastructure is still 
being used just as extensively as it was, and I think that in the long run, 
it'll continue to grow.

>I don't think the actual PHP for command line features matter. My point
>is that people get it wrong. What is it that you can do on Perl in the
>command line that you can't do with PHP? Nothing relevant, it is that
>people hardly can concieve PHP as a command line scripting language
>because PHP is not known nor advertised as a capable language to work
>that way. That is what needs fixing: people's misconceptions. That's
>fixable with targetted marketing.

I don't think that's even a problem, and it's not as if we have so many 
marketing resources we should be looking for new fronts to fight :)  PHP is 
looking at a serious up-hill battle if it tries to market itself as a 
general purpose language.  If we market it as a Web platform, it's an 
established solution (which still needs work).  If I get to 'pick my 
fights', I'd go for the 2nd one any day.
As I previously said, as things work in the opensource world - if people 
start working on different angles, there's nothing to stop them.  But as 
far as the core project is concerned, I'd be very wary of losing focus.

>Man, give it some time! How long was it since Andrei released PHP-GTK?
>How old is PHP now?

These aren't the right questions in my opinion.  PHP was around when the 
Web started growing rapidly, in 1997-8-9.  The GUI market, on the other 
hands, started booming in the early 90's.  In my opinion, it's pretty much 
a lost battle - there are established solutions which are much better than 
PHP in this area.

>I think it is amazing the some how unexpected uses that people find for
>PHP. What really confuses me is that instead of making that "use cases"
>to promote PHP, you simply raise a lot of objections as if that would
>cause any harm to PHP. Come on, enjoy all the PHP users applications
>because they certainly help you to make the proof of concept that PHP is
>the right choice for so many people.

That's my main point of disagreement.  It would be quite cool to find some 
day that my fridge has PHP built into it, but let's be realistic about it - 
do we have the power and resources to do this?  My answer is a definite 
'no', and I think that if we try doing this, we'll lose what we already 
have - which is a *strong* Web platform.

>Useful? How can you reckon them as useful if you insist on neglecting

What do you mean insist on neglecting them?
If you mean that in a presentation that I may do about PHP to an audience 
of possible users, I would define PHP as a 'Web platform', then yes, I'm 
neglecting it.  But if I pitch it as the 'Language that would change your 
life!!!', my chances of convincing them are slim.

>One other thing, I don't know if you notice, that but every time you
>neglect these unexpected uses of PHP you are somehow ruling out people
>behind them. That's a serious thing because you are eventually hurting
>people's feelings when that worked so hard to use the language that you
>developed. If people are making a private use of their work and could
>not care less if their work is reckoned, that is not a problem. But
>sometimes you see people working so hard with recognition as their main
>goal. Neglecting that recognition or making it very hard is terrible. I
>don't thing you want those people to give up for the lack of
>recognition, don't you?

As I said earlier in this letter, making people feel good about what they 
do doesn't always go hand in hand with what would keep PHP alive for the 
years to come.  It all depends what our goal is.  If it's to try and keep 
PHP on the cutting edge, then we have to go in a certain path.  If our goal 
is to make everybody happy, at the price of seeing PHP lose focus, become a 
super-market of 'everything goes', inevitably losing market share and 
eventually dying, it's another.  These two are extremes, and we should do 
our best to find the path in between.  As much as you tried to establish 
this in your letters, I haven't seen a good solid reason to believe that 
what you suggest is going to secure a better future for PHP, or even going 
to increase the chances of success for it.  Your analysis of the situation 
assumes that in our current situation, we have nothing to lose.  I see this 
very differently - I think that if we change directions without carefully 
thinking about the possible consequences, we have *TONS* to lose.

>You're welcome, but you just skipped the implicit million dollar
>question: will there be an affordable version of Zend encoder that
>developers can buy for USD$100 like they can with VB or Delphi? :-)

The current Encoder pricing is quite affordable (people on this list didn't 
even agree with me that $50/month may be too high, but it's definitely not 
unaffordable).  Unlike VB or Delphi, where you *cannot* develop unless you 
buy these products, with PHP, things are very different.  You can develop 
whatever you want, and only if you distribute your application *and* don't 
want to give out the source code (which almost always means you're selling 
it), you should consider getting the Encoder.  $50/month is not a lot, and 
we're definitely not going to offer it for $100/perpetual.  We do, however, 
look into different ways of offering this functionality in different ways 
to different audiences, but nothing has been decided as of yet.


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