By Edgar Hassler on October 27th, 2008
A language lives and dies by how easy it is for a person to express something within that language. But the ease in expression is much like the type I and type II error rate in a statistical test: as you adjust one to be nearer to where you want it to be, the other gets farther away. So the architects of a language have to choose between adding more keywords and constructs or having longer, but simpler sequences of existing ones.
PHP is a very easy language to learn and use because it has a syntax that is a simplified sampling from C++/Java and Perl. People who use these languages pick up PHP fast, and people who haven’t used any languages often learn PHP with as much ease as they would learn Perl.