What is PHP?

PHP (Hypertext Preprocessor) is a scripting language that is used to create dynamic websites and web applications. The abbreviation PHP initially stood for “Personal Homepage Tools” but since version 3, PHP stands for “Hypertext Preprocessor”.

PHP is a scripting language; Programs that are coded with it and saved as simple text files are converted into machine code by the web server when they are called up, with which the latter works “by default”. In this respect, PHP programs are largely platform-independent and can be executed on different hardware systems.

The first PHP interpreter was developed in 1995 by Rasmus Lerdorf, who is considered to be the inventor of PHP. Back then it was a loose collection of programs that had been developed in the C programming language and were called from a batch file. The main aim was to receive input from web forms in a simple way, to process it and to mix it in output files. Embedded in HTML files, the PHP code supplemented static websites with dynamic information such as date and time or, for example, mixed in the input of users from order forms in order confirmation pages.

Today PHP has modern semantics and is available in ready-made installation packages for many operating systems. A comprehensive object-oriented programming language has grown out of this, which is now available in version 7.

The PHP infrastructure is installed on an estimated 82% of all web servers on the Internet. More than 200 million apps and websites developed with PHP are online. Over 5 million software developers use the programming language.

PHP is not only to be regarded as a syntactic-formal programming language, but also as a technical-strategic platform. Because when we talk about PHP today, we mean the PHP-typical syntax as well

Since version 3 in 1998, PHP development was mainly driven by Zeev Suraski and Andi Gutmans. From this cooperation, Zend Technologies Inc. has developed, a company that is in charge of the further development of PHP and offers consulting services around PHP. The company was acquired in October 2015 by Rogue Wave Software Inc., which focuses on platform-independent developer tools in the field of high-performance computing.