Johannes Schlüter has a new post on his site today saying "so long and thanks for all the fish" to the PHP 5.3.x series of releases. With PHP 5.3.29 being released yesterday, that marks the end of the release cycle for the 5.3 series. He takes a bit to look back and reflect on how far things have come during the 5.3.x series, its history and his role as the release master.
PHP 5.3's history starts somewhere in 2005. We knew what a pressure point of PHP was - a language made for solving The Web Problem needs a good Unicode story. [...] As this was a big and pressing issue and the need was obvious and the solution looked promising it was quickly areed on making that the base for a future PHP 6. And then time passed, initial enthusiasm passed and the sheer amount of work became obvious. Two years in we noticed that the ongoing PHP 6 work blocked other work - new features couldn't be added to 5.2, the current version at that time, and adding them to (at that time) CVS's HEAD.
He talks about Lukas Smith getting involved as the "co-release manager" for the series and the contribution he made to the project. He mentions the over five thousand commits and around eighty people that contributed to the releases and the over ten thousand files that were changed. Major features were introduced during this series including namespacing, anonymous functions, goto and late static binding. He also talks more meta about the process the PHP development follows and how things changed over the 29 bugfix releases in the 5.3.x series.
Thank you Johannes and Lukas for all that you've done to get PHP 5.3 to where it is today and your work ensuring the introduction of these major features made it out in a timely manner.