March 09, 2006
Zend Framework: Like Rails for PHP
I just found out about the Zend Framework tonight. All I can say is WOW! I was completely surprised to find a complete MVC model and many related classes, including syndicated feed support, PDF writing, and even searching! I have been shopping around for a Rails equivalent for PHP and think I have finally found my match. The Zend Framework is PHP 5 only, which is always a plus for me. It also seems to make use of exceptions, which is always cool, when done properly of course.
I have been on a PEAR kick lately, but am having reservations, especially when it comes to database abstraction. PEAR is nice and all, but a little on the slow side. I have two large PHP projects coming up: the rewrite of the USG Funding Sysytem and the rewrite of start.case.edu. I am definitely considering using Zend Framework for one of them (most likely the USG project because speed isn't a huge issue with that fairly low-traffic service). Whatever the case, my initial impressions of Zend Framework are all positive. I trust that Zend has delivered a very robust framework and has put much thought into it. I would expect no less from "The PHP Company."
To summarize, if you are going to be doing PHP development in the near future, I highly recommend you look at the Zend Framework. It looks to have the potential to make your life much easier. I will report back when I have some experience developing with it.
If you are looking for a quick tutorial, I suggest http://www.phparch.com/zftut/. Looks to be a good primer on the abilities.
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