Year after year, I get told in my home country that PHP is not an Enterprise ready platform. In Costa Rica competing with more commercial companies such as Microsoft and their .Net/SQL server line of products or Oracle and their database products is hard, specially when working with Open Source, and trying to convince clients of the actual performance and technical/licensing gains versus what they can get immediately out of the box with other commercial products and vendor lock in with those product offerings. In the end, it boils down to who has the bigger marketing stick, which from a technical point is very sad; the client does not find out about their decision up until a point when their investment is so far along that it would be prohibitive to go to anything else.
This year’s Zendcon conference is a true testimonial of what an amazing commitment that Zend has made to evolve their ecosystem to something that boils down to what Andi Gutman summed up as “the language to web enable everything”. Connectivity with all database systems available today, portability to the desktop and mobile devices, CLI support for software development for low level tasks, and an array of other goodies are really making a case for PHP as a close contender to replace JSP/.NET based technologies for Web facing sites. Another real advantage to this is the community support, that allows the work to be organized and worked on by a multitude of developers and testers, making the language base really robust for all tasks at hand.
Last but not least, hearing inspirational stories by companies such as the NYSE delivering web enabled sites in 1/3 the development time as they used to in JSP and companies such as Facebook and Yahoo using it to develop their multimillion user communities, should speak well to how serious your company should get about the use of it for your next Website or online presence project.