Feeds

Microsoft arms half-wit developers with PHP handgun

PHP is legal. But it shouldn't be

Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction

Fail and You Terrible things are about to happen in Microsoft's web application hosting environment, Windows Azure. Redmond's Slugworth, desperate to keep up with Mountain View's Chocolate Factory, has introduced support for PHP on their web application platform. Microsoft's Windows Azure is a competitor to Google App Engine and is trying to gain popularity by supporting interoperability and standards. And don't fall asleep within four hours of reading that sentence or a blood vessel will burst in your brain as your subconscious tries to make sense of it. You've been warned.

Both App engine and Windows Azure boast a promise of automatic scalability to developers, in the same fashion that a traveling salesman in the early American 1800s with his straw hat, red and white pinstripe suit, and assistant midget boast that their secret-recipe tonic will cure all that ails you.

Step right up, friends. Boy, have I got an offer for you. Have you got problems with scalability? Are you too incompetent to denormalize your data schema to optimize hot access paths? Do you write N-squared loops and blame poor execution speed on your runtime environment? Well, then step right up because I've got the solution for you.

The danger of these fast talkers is that they can convince a bad programmer that he's a good one. Google does an adequate job of keeping out the troublemakers by restricting App Engine to Java or Python. Now, say what you will about Java developers, but when App Engine first launched with support for Python, they immediately made it clear that you must be at least this awesome to ride.

In response, it appears as though Microsoft is taking what I like to call the Little League strategy: Everybody is a winner, even the kid who got smacked in the face with a line drive hit and waited out the rest of the season listening to adults struggle to tell him that it doesn't look that bad.

Yes, let me introduce you to the professional PHP programmer. You see, PHP is like a handgun. On its own, it is simply an inanimate tool that has no moral leaning. In the hands of a responsible citizen, it can be used to the benefit of society. But in the hands of someone who is untrained or mentally unstable, it can be used to commit horrible atrocities.

Whenever there's such a tragedy, other developers are quick to blame PHP. If PHP were illegal, then Yahoo! would never have happened. If we regulated PHP tightly, then there would be no Digg. Now, it's not fair to say that the world would be better off without PHP, but its community could certainly use less encouragement, which is why Azure's support for PHP worries me.

Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction

Next page: The Perfect Fail

More from The Register

next story
Ubuntu 14.04 LTS: Great changes, but sssh don't mention the...
Why HELLO Amazon! You weren't here last time
This time it's 'Personal': new Office 365 sub covers just two devices
Redmond also brings Office into Google's back yard
Got Windows 8.1 Update yet? Get ready for YET ANOTHER ONE – rumor
Leaker claims big release due this fall as Microsoft herds us into the CLOUD
Next Windows obsolescence panic is 450 days from … NOW!
The clock is ticking louder for Windows Server 2003 R2 users
OpenBSD founder wants to bin buggy OpenSSL library, launches fork
One Heartbleed vuln was too many for Theo de Raadt
Patch iOS, OS X now: PDFs, JPEGs, URLs, web pages can pwn your kit
Plus: iThings and desktops at risk of NEW SSL attack flaw
Batten down the hatches, Ubuntu 14.04 LTS due in TWO DAYS
Admins dab straining server brows in advance of Trusty Tahr's long-term support landing
Red Hat to ship RHEL 7 release candidate with a taste of container tech
Grab 'near-final' version of next Enterprise Linux next week
Apple inaugurates free OS X beta program for world+dog
Prerelease software now open to anyone, not just developers – as long as you keep quiet
prev story

Whitepapers

Mobile application security study
Download this report to see the alarming realities regarding the sheer number of applications vulnerable to attack, as well as the most common and easily addressable vulnerability errors.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.
Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.