Ewww, You Use PHP? | MailChimp Email Marketing Blog
Lately here at MailChimp we’ve been trying to bring in more developers to help us keep the innovation coming fast and furious as the application grows in scope and scale. It’s always been difficult for us to hire really good developers, just because of where we are. Our office is here in Atlanta GA, not exactly a hotbed of cool startups in the last few years. On top of that we’re fundamentally an email company, which is far from a sexy problem for geeks to sink their teeth into. But the biggest negative reaction we get when hiring new developers is when we mention the programming language we use.
Yes, I’m afraid we have to come clean. We use PHP here at MailChimp. For the non-programmers among you, PHP is a programming language that is extremely popular in dynamic web sites and applications. Even this blog is written in PHP. Despite its popularity, PHP is considered by the programming elite, almost without exception, as one of the worst languages currently in use today. The term « good PHP programmer » is considered an oxymoron. Yet it’s the primary language we use here for development, and it’s the only language we use for everything touching the production MailChimp application. You can imagine the horror and surprise we see when we try to tell a good developer that we use PHP to solve cool and interesting problems.
We’ve built a framework for developing applications in PHP specifically designed to allow for fast innovation in the high-load, high-performance environment we live in every day while still keeping the API extremely simple to deal with. This isn’t your grandfather’s PHP, or even your slightly older brother’s. I can say without doubt that it is the most sophisticated framework for this environment that I’ve heard of except for perhaps what Facebook uses. Our architecture is heavily sharded, fast, and scalable to handle the absurd amount of growth we’ve had in the last few years.