Francesco Gallarotti wrote:
> I am a student in a college in NY state. Here we have several servers and
> dozens of courses on computer science. No server is PHP ready and no course
> instructor knows anything about PHP. Why do you think this is happening? I
> really like PHP and I am using it in my personal website to work with some
> text files and a small database. Why PHP is so not popular in the computer
> science teaching area?

IMHO, that is there no marketing effort behind PHP, meaning there is no
Microsoft nor Sun nor any strong brand behind PHP to advertise it.

Even in the Open Source world the PHP credit is relative. For instance
well known publishers on the field like O'Reilly don't seem to care much
about publishing PHP books. I don't know why.

O'Reilly seems to give more credit to Perl and Python than to PHP, but
it is also true that such languages have well organized advocacy groups
while there seems to be no organized advocacy for PHP at all.

Also PHP is only known to be adequate for Web programming niche market
although it can be used as a general purpose programming language. Since
Computer Science courses are for much more than Web programming,
colleges do not see PHP as a good bet for the future of their students.

Unfortunately, in this world when somebody does not know about
something, what is important is not what that "is" but what "seems to
be". So humans seem to give more credit to something that appears often
in many places than something that appears not very much in only one
place. PHP popularity seems to be limited to what it is advertised for
which isn't much as I mentioned above.

So, if you care about PHP credit and consequent success in the Computer
Science world, what shall you do about it?

Well, as an individual you may not be able to do much. But I think there
is plenty of things that can be done to better market PHP so it gets the
necessary recognition to appear in Computer Science curriculum.

In the past I made several suggestions to PHP developers in order to
improve PHP recognition not only in colleges but also in companies that
are not aware of the capabilities of PHP. If companies are not made
aware of PHP capabilities, that reduces the chances of employment of
people like everybody here that would like to keep working on PHP and
you may be forced by the circumstances to work with other more accepted
languages in the labour market.

Unfortunately, my suggestions were not considered seriously, meaning
either people present then either not agree with the suugestions or
simply nothing seems to have been done in that direction.

I don't want to bring back the discussion of the merits of the
suggestions, but rather to remind them for people that were not present
or not paying attention to consider them and maybe who knows does
something about it. So what I suggested was something more os less like

- Promote contests of PHP applications or components. The Python
community does this and it seems to be getting the attention of the
computing media. This leads to an obvious greater exposure of the
language to the computing community that does not know it while it
promotes the development of more and better applications and components.

- Promote a banner exchange/Web ring between all sites that promote PHP
related materials: articles, components, applications, etc.. This would
give a greater sense of the wide support that users that adhere to PHP
may find. Somebody objected because it would be hard to tell which sites
provide a reasonable level of quality. I think this could be sorted by
providing a way for users to vote on each of the sites. The results of
the votes would be shown in the banners to advise about their quality.

- Seek deals with offline and online computing specialized media to
assure that PHP gets exposure in the exchange for banner advertisement.
People that are not aware of PHP often learn from those media. PHP
exposure could be a space for letting qualified writers write articles
that would let readers of those media be aware of PHP capabilities
especially for the people that are not aware of PHP credits because
those are the most important people that PHP marketing should target
because you may find many decision makers among them. Decision makers
often decide whether tecnologies should or not be used in companies or
included in college curriculum.

I have more ideias but this is just to illustrate how PHP can be
marketed without necessarily spending money on the efforts. Of course my
ideias are not the only ones that would work and not necessarily the
best. Anybody can bring more ideias but what is really important is that
something gets done.

I am crossposting this to php-dev because I think that the most
important people that can do something about this are there. If you
don't agree that this topic makes sense in that list, just don't
follow-up in there.

Manuel Lemos

PHP General Mailing List (http://www.php.net/)
To unsubscribe, e-mail: [EMAIL PROTECTED]
For additional commands, e-mail: [EMAIL PROTECTED]
To contact the list administrators, e-mail: [EMAIL PROTECTED]

Reply via email to