December 5th, 2007 by rvdavid Leave a reply »

After browsing through some other web developer’s websites and speaking to other developers, I think it’s a shame that there’s so much of the NIH Syndrome going on in PHP.

I find that PHP is one of the languages where NIH syndrome is rampant, or at least it has been, nowadays people are slowly starting to practicing some “reusage”. This is a good thing.

We need standards and we need to shift toward following standards. We need to get into the habit of identifying the right tool for the job, rather than thinking that creating the right tool for the job from scratch or programming using notepad/vim is some source of bragging rights.

Some people think that it’s a huge bragging point that they’ve written all their php scripts from scratch and in notepad or vim, managing to type up a 500 liner without needing to press the delete key or test and just run first off _without_ any errors this isn’t programming… this is bull$hit. It doesn’t mean you’re good, it means you are immature with misplaced skills.

To conclude this short rant, I thought I’d add my voice to the chorus singing against NIH Syndrome. Stop coding stuff from scratch, code reuse is good AND FFS! USE AN IDE! ->

To conclude this short rant, I thought I’d add my voice to the chorus singing against NIH Syndrome. Stop coding stuff from scratch, code reuse is good AND FFS! USE AN IDE FOR YOUR PROJECTS! ->

update: I thought I’d clarify what I meant with the whole “use an IDE” ;)

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  1. While I can agree with the good of reusing working code, I’m not sure that you’re going to convince vim users not to use vim. They use it because they don’t want an IDE in the way of their work. Text editors are text editors you know, and the speed somebody can work is a lot more important than (did you have a reason for wanting an IDE?). Also, beyond the issues of editors, where are you proposing people get quality, secure PHP code? If I could be sure that code hasn’t been programmed by the equivalence of high school students, I might be prone to using it.

  2. rvdavid says:

    Hi PP,

    Don’t get me wrong, I like VIM as a text editor. I guess I was unclear with what I meant, one of those ranty moments I suppose where I’ve pretty much just said half of what I mean in my head and have not expressed it writing.

    On the point of Text Editors being Text Editors, I agree iwth you. I use VIM myself when I need to make quick edits to scripts or configuration files, but that’s about all I use VIM for. Working with projects etc, I use an IDE it has integrated everything. Code completion, code highlighting (yes I know vim has code highlighting plugins), SVN integration, Unit Testing, debugger and a buttload more.

    I’ve spoken to other developers who swear by VIM and to see them work with it is somewhat mind boggling, they’ve written shell scripts that automate checking out code, testing and implementation. But well, my thinking is… why go through all this effort of shoe horning a text editor and shell scripts together when all this functionality is available to you in an IDE? Tradition I suppose? “it’s the linux way”? I dunno man – bottom line, if I’m editing scripts, I’d use an editor (VIM, Nano, Notepad), if I’m working on a project, use an IDE – this was more a throw away comment anyway, I was more talking about the attitude of “I’m good because I use Notepad” or “I’ve achieved a feat because I wrote an entire application without needing to test”.

    On the subject of secure php code. Secure PHP code is out there, you just need to find it, I think we know what crap is when we see it – regardless of who wrote it. If there’s anything us developers are good at it’s laughing at other people’s code.

    While there aren’t any solid answers to each and every component requirement, we’re getting there. Have a look at the Zend Framework which is heralded to have flex points which allow it to be used as a full blown MVC framework to a class library which developers can plug into their projects. It is projects like these that I’m talking about.

    Check it out ->

  3. I’d use an IDE, only problem is I’ve yet run into a php ide that debugs as a programming language should I.E Java. Upon doing that I’ve developed my own framework, like zend for the purpose of reusable code and inclemently improving the code as I find a need to use it in different ways. For now I’m just in love with gEdit, allowing me to edit php files online seamlessly, yes VIM has it but gEdit has a far less learning curve. Plus code completion in php is worthless, blame the horrid naming conversions, plus IDE’s like PDT code completion is just slow on showing functions within classes and so on.

    And yes if you are having to write code in php without debugging, then its repetitive code and you should develop a lib for it rather then rewriting it 7 times.

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