Tim O’Reilly blogged PHP Becoming Mainstream today. It must have shown up thanks to Scoble’s Google Reader link stream. Scoble’s links are as good as the links that come out of digg. They’re different, so I read both.
Anyway, O’Reilly argues that since sales of “For Dummies” books have risen to the top of the PHP book charts that PHP has now become mainstream. How about another metric? How about the metric of clients saying “Sure!” instead “Huh?” when you suggest using PHP instead of Perl or Java? That happened about seven years ago. PHP went mainstream a long time ago.
I think that if Tim were to look at the history of books about PHP, they would find that Core PHP Programming, the first PHP book in English, was aimed at programming novices. It sold really well. Furthermore, the most popular PHP book of all time is PHP and MySQL Web Development by Luke Welling and Laura Thomson.