PHP, or also called Hypertext Preprocessor, is the most popular server-side scripting language. It is incredibly adaptable and holds plenty of innovative features.
Early History of PHP
Rasmus Lerdorf developed PHP in 1994 but to maintain his personal homepage. Later on, in 1998, Andi Gutmans and Zeev Suraski, two talented programmers, met him to take PHP to another level. So, the goal was to be used to redesign web pages.
Lerdorf named it Personal Home Page because he meant to use it personally. But his creation started to gain recognition by other programmers, and eventually, it turned into a global web programming language. Thus its name became Hypertext Preprocessor.
For sure, the aim behind the development of this language was not to gain such popularity and global usage. The interest was so uncontrollable and unexpected that Rasmus Lerdorf was not able to protect and limit its individuality.
Still, his venture has proved to be helpful for the coming generation with discovering new ways of web development.
History of PHP versions
It is easy to notice the growth of web development through the regular supplement of newer PHP extensions.
With every one of them, they allow web programmers to create more attractive and dynamic web pages. As time progressed, a lot of changes to PHP versions were made.
- PHP 1 and 2: The first two original variants of PHP are not created with enough features. However, they have established the benchmark for future versions to get additional advancement.
- PHP 3 and 4: These two variants experienced significant developments as Zeev Suraski, and Andi Gutmans recreated the whole language. As a result, the new name of the language became Hypertext Preprocessor. During this period was added also improved parsing system named Zend Engine. The functionality is expanded and more powerful with introducing global, command-line interface and object-oriented programming.
- PHP 5: In 2004 came the fifth variant of PHP, which was powered by the new Zend Engine II. The great new added feature of the latest version was the possibility to manipulate the database easily and have continuity. Moreover, in this version was added a binding variable.
- PHP 6: In this version was embedded the ICU (International Components for Unicode) library into the program. However, this variant was abandoned, and it wasn’t launched in the market due to some other reasons.
- PHP 7: In this version of the PHP programming language can be found various features. They didn’t exist in the earlier variants. Some of them are 64-bit integer support, return and scalar type declarations, etc. Also, it is powered by Zend Engine 3.
The latest release
The major version update is PHP 8.0. It brings various new features to the type system, error handling, object-oriented programming, strings, and more.
The future of a programming language that powers a vital part of applications and Internet websites results from many people’s efforts.
Although, PHP is trying to be conservative and exclude changes that might break a larger part of the applications. Still, the new release comes with numerous significant new features. Some of them are JIT, Named Parameters, Constructor Properties, and Attributes. They bring a lot of improvements and changes in syntax. Also, there are several minor changes, such as a resource to object migrations, advanced error handling, and modifications in operators and engine comparisons. They help to reduce the chances of overlooked bugs.