The open source scripting language PHP (PHP: Hypertext Preprocessor) may gain a higher profile in the enterprise thanks to efforts from Zend Technologies. The company later this year plans to launch the Zend PHP Framework, a development environment for PHP applications, and the company announced last week that it has joined the open source Eclipse Foundation. The initiatives are part of Zend's PHP Collaboration Project, which features assistance from companies such as IBM and Oracle.
Due later this year, Zend PHP Framework is intended to standardize the way PHP applications are built. In joining Eclipse, Zend plans to lead a project within Eclipse to develop a plug-in to the Eclipse workbench, for developing with PHP.
"The idea is to have an Eclipse plug-in here to leverage content [and] leverage the assets that have a Web services interface on it," and link to Java back-end systems, said Rod Smith, vice president of emerging technology at IBM.
Both the Eclipse plug-in and development framework will be offered free of charge.
Bringing PHP to Eclipse is important for PHP developers, for Eclipse, and for Zend, said Michael Goulde, senior analyst at Forrester Research. "I think extending Eclipse beyond Java is an important move to help establish Eclipse."
It remains to be seen whether there will be similar moves to put other scripting languages within the Eclipse fold, such as Perl, Python, and Ruby, Goulde said.