Todor Tsintsarski, Tech Lead at the Funding Circle team @ Questers
Today marks the 26th anniversary of the first release of PHP. To recognize its contribution to the modern web, we’ve asked our colleague Todor Tsintsarski to give us a brief overview of the scripting language and share what he and his team are working on. Here’s what he shared with us:
The opinions about whether PHP is a good choice among all modern programming languages vary a lot. Some say it's ugly and illogical, others - that it gives you a lot of freedom in the way you'd like to implement any feature requested. I personally fall into the second group. In my more than 10-years- long experience with PHP, it has served me quite well. Working on all kinds of tasks, it has performed more than nicely. Although I have to admit, even being a single-threaded language (unlike Java, for example), it might not be the best choice for some particular tasks such as running heavy calculations, for example.
The web is what PHP is good for. It is used by 79% of all websites (according to W3Techs). That's almost 4 out of 5 websites! It is a language that has been around for more than 20 years and still manages to keep up with the growing needs of the web apps market, releasing a new version every year, patching security fixes, adding new features, etc. The latest version released recently is version 8, which comes with even faster processing power (JIT). So, PHP is much alive, faster, and better than it has ever been.
Funding Circle, the company I've been working for the last 4 years, is supporting small and medium businesses (SMEs) across the UK, US and EU. It is a platform for peer-to-peer lending, where people can give a hand to any SME business in need, whether it has been rejected for credit by a bank or just prefers quicker and nicer service.
Among other technologies in Funding Circle, we've been using PHP as well. It is used for supporting a distributed system based on Symfony framework. We've battelled problems like concurrency issues on a message bus system, caching problems, refactoring old-ish code. Also, constantly adding new features and supporting a growing system, keeping it simple and easy to extend, following good practices on (almost) every step.
That’s just a small part of the challenges we are tackling in Funding Circle. And I must say, we need more people to join and help us with the development of new features and enhancing existing ones. And even though the above might seems like a standard set of issues, there's something different in the Funding Circle team that makes us feel like a family. There is always someone to help you or to share an improvement idea or a concern with. Estimations and decisions are taken together (and not just instructed), having both parties agree on a timeline that would suit both – the product team and the developers. Which, I think, isn't found in most of the companies these days.
Learn more about the vacancies in the Funding Circle team here.