PHP (Hypertext Preprocessor) is an open source programming language, widely used and designed specifically for web development. It is an interpreted language that can be embedded in HTML code. PHP can run on most web servers and on all platforms and operating systems at no additional cost.
PHP is especially suitable for the creation of dynamic websites, as it allows interaction with databases, such as MySQL and PostgreSQL . In addition, PHP is capable of handling forms, saving data in cookies, and performing a host of other tasks that are essential for the development of modern, functional websites.
PHP presents a series of features that make this language a very attractive option for web development. Some of these features are:
PHP was created by Rasmus Lerdorf in 1994, although the first version of PHP looked nothing like what we know today. Originally, PHP stood for 'Personal Home Page' and was used to manage your resume and Lerdorf's personal contact information.
The PHP/FI (Form Interpreter) version, released in 1995, included the ability to work with forms and communicate with databases, which greatly expanded its functionality.
In 1997, two Israeli programmers, Zeev Suraski and Andi Gutmans, rewrote the PHP parser, creating the basis for PHP 3. With PHP 3, the interpretation of 'PHP' was changed to 'Hypertext Preprocessor' and the language began to look more like what it is today.
PHP version 4, released in 2000, improved the speed and reliability of the language, and version 5, released in 2004, added new features such as Object Oriented Programming (OOP).
In 2015, PHP 7 was released, which is the version used today. PHP 7 introduced several performance improvements and reduced memory consumption. Since then, PHP has continued to evolve and new features and functionality have been added with each minor release.
PHP 8.0, released in November 2020, brought with it a number of improvements and new features that have given the language a big boost.
PHP offers several advantages that make it ideal for web development. Some of these advantages include:
Despite the numerous advantages, PHP has some disadvantages:
PHP is used in a large number of websites and applications, due to its flexibility and ease of use. Some examples of using PHP include: