I know its on everybody's mind so I'll go ahead and ask it - what are your thoughts on PHP's extensions - do you expect to implement them soon, or are you expecting other people to contribute them?
Needless to say any non trivial use of PHP requires one extension or another (pdo, mysqli, zlib, mcrypt ...), also HipHopVM are close to implementing a lot of them.
That said this is simply incredible effort from you guys - I really really hope this can take off - having so readable php code and possibility for interop with different languages (written in RPython themselves) is simply mind blowing :) Best of
PHP extensions will be implemented in order of necessity. We're now at the verge of getting mediawiki to run completely, so we obviously implemented some extensions, but we decided not to open source them just yet. We'll keep you posted.
Interesting. Why did you decide not to open source them?
Well, we're planning on selling some sort of commercial version of hippyvm.
Hm. It doesn't sound like open source hippyvm will be particularly useful then.
I'm welcoming other ideas how to make money of hippyvm then.
I suggest implementing something that is not a common functionality + selling support. When HippyVM gets into it's first stable build, ppl will sooner or later write the missing extensions, cutting you off of your money source.
That "Python from PHP" extension looks pretty useful and worth selling. I say you focus on making this sort of paid extensions - something that is not available with native PHP. APIs for services that would offer fast and easy access to things like AWS, PayPal etc simply anywhere without the need to look for some 3rd-party library that might and might not work or even writing your own. Extensions like that should be worth something ;)
I would be interested to learn which open source project managed to make this model work. It definitely did not work for PyPy (there is no way we could ever justify costs of developing pypy using only later income from support + open source donations). There is a lot of PyPy users (about 1% of total PyPI package download counts), but very little money in support.
I'm super interested to see how this works in practice! @danaketh has a good point, that once the commercial version proves itself, the community could develop Open Source versions of the common extensions. Somehow Zend manages to build commercial products on top of PHP - they'd be a good model to try and follow. The key is going to be giving the OSS community enough to be useful (otherwise no one will contribute), while keeping the peices that are really useful to business closed so they can be sold.