Imagine a world in which your career, the careers of your friends and coworkers, and the businesses and industries built on PHP vanished overnight, or never existed at all. No Facebook. No Wordpress. Billions of dollars in online commerce, all gone. Flickr, Tumblr, MailChimp: poof! This talk presents a dystopian world in which we are stuck updating each other via SMS or (gasp!) MySpace, reading content on corporate portals, and buying everything from just a handful of online marketplaces.


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Ben is the kind of guy you want to start chatting to in a pub!

Although the concept of no PHP was kind of dystopic (is that a word?), Ben used his humor and presentation of some facts and history of alternate languages to get our minds thinking and made for an entertaining and enlightening experience.

Having drawn the short straw and being the last speaker of the day, it goes without saying that Ben gave a great talk that perfectly wound down the day and we all hope that PHP will still be there in the morning when we wake up! ;)

I really enjoyed this talk. Ben did a great job of talking about some history of PHP, himself as a developer (which I'm sure a good portion of us could relate to) and some "what-ifs" surrounding what would have happened if PHP didn't exist. The slides were also nicely formatted and laid out, it made following the talk a breeze.

This was the perfect talk to end of a busy day: light hearted, fun and allowed you to just sit back and enjoy the ride.

Schalk Keun at 09:09 on 29 Sep 2017

I enjoyed this talk a lot! I personally have thought about this a lot before, and personally I thought that python would've been the PHP we know today.

Great insight and information to back his statements was given.

Thanks Ben.

Musa at 10:14 on 29 Sep 2017

I liked this presentation it was well layout the slides were shot and straight to the point and I liked the surprise it brought. When I first saw the topic I was really interested to see that replacement only to realize PHP is here to stay so I am still safe.

Marius Brits at 11:27 on 29 Sep 2017

Great discussion, really gives one something to think about ... a world without PHP or in my case a world without a JOB! Thanks to PHP we employ 25 people.

James Titcumb at 11:28 on 29 Sep 2017

Really improved since I last saw this talk at PHPNW16, bit more of a positive vibe and eye opening :) Nice!

Wayback playback!! Always nice reflecting on where we come from and how far we have come

The only thing that would have made this better is if the dystopian future was better represented .. maybe with Ben dressed like something out of Mad Max to really get us to visualise it :)

Great fun talk and really helps you appreciate what the community around PHP has done for probably one of the most influential scripting languages in the history of the web.