Portfolio and Technology Blog
by Kevin Boyd

Beautiful PHP

Every once in a great while, there comes an inspiration the likes for which the world has been heretofore unprepared.

BeautifulPHP is one of those inspirations.

I've owned the domain since March 1st, 2015, but until last week I had been struggling to find a purpose for it beyond a pure joke. You see, I actually do feel that PHP deserves some accolades. A lot of people tend to bash it, the same way that I've caught myself bashing Perl. And Java. And Python. And C++. And Dot-Net. (They're good languages, Bront.) Except when PHP gets brought into the fray, things get waaaaay out of hand.

The fact is, over the past 8 years PHP has undergone a complete renaissance. From the Composer package manager, to the many PSR standards put forth by the PHP Framework Interoperability Group, to the focus on quality engineering and testing, to the massive improvements in the language itself, the average "PHP Project" of 2018 looks almost nothing like the equivalent PHP project of 2008.

I recently submitted a talk proposal to a conference's Call for Papers, thinking that the "Beautiful PHP" concept would work somewhat decently as a talk.

It was rejected.

That's OK, though. I didn't spend much time on the talk abstract, and conference submissions by me are always something I stress about - in the back of my head, I sometimes think a rejection is better than being accepted. Less stressful, you see.

But, it occurred to me that by using Sculpin and the RevealJS slideshow framework, I could quickly knock out a presentation-style design for the BeautifulPHP website.

I think it turned out alright.

You can navigate it using the clickable navigation control, arrow keys on your keyboard*, pressing the spacebar, or by using swipes* on touch screens.

Check it out!

* Arrow/Swipe users should note that some slides allow you to move down for related content. Using the spacebar will navigate all of the slides, even the downward-facing ones, if you don't want to swipe down.

After posting the URL to Reddit, I got a number of positive comments and even some PRs and issues filed against the Github repository for the project.

Special thanks to Github users @karanveersp, @petk, @brettsantore, and Reddit user u/GMSteuart, for their contributions to the site.

You might also enjoy this short story from 2002. I've enjoyed it ever since I first found it - it's timeless and highly entertaining:

The Parable of the Languages by Shelley Powers

Published: March 1, 2018

Categories: coding

Tags: coding, dev, development, php, opinion, computer-history, fun, projects

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