That Old PHP vs Java thing

Mike Cogan wondered on his blog why php is more popular than java. Most of his argument seems to be based on the assumption that PHP coders want to get a website up and running as soon as possible with no regard for proper planning and design. Somehow, simply choosing to use Java makes you plan and design better. Huh?

I really don’t understand why PHP, etc. dominates the free/cheap hosting solutions. Tomcat is a production class Servlet Container and JBoss easily holds it own against the commercial application servers.

to which Jeff Moore has replied quite thoroughly and clearly why PHP is more popular. PHP is popular for a number of reasons. I wouldn’t overlook that its bundled by default in practically every linux distrubtion a hosting provider might want, integrates easily with Apache, and can be shared across a number of users/sites on a server – which is not as easy to do with java.

Cogan also suggests that PHP solutions would be unmaintainable, unscalable, and unprofessional. I disagree. I think these qualities have more to do with the programmer than with the language.

I think Cogan’s attitude may be typical of the MIT Approach that seems to prevail in the java culture. Zend should take note of this. The road into the enterprise is an uphill battle, fighting against the MIT attitude all the way. Instead, Zend should do everything they can to grow the commercial PHP small business/consumer web application market.