Any particular reason you say this? We use it on several big* projects at work, and PHP itself has never been a limiting factor. I'm not claiming there might not be some better choices, but I've never seen PHP as an issue. (How some people use it might be an issue, but I won't blame PHP for that. I mean, way back when, I wrote my first Java app as essentially one long procedural main() method. )
- Of course, everyone's definition of "big" will differ.
Yes there is a reason I say this.
In a large system, regardless of language, there are going to be bugs. PHP is not strict enough about typing. Obviously PHP is interpretted and not compiled; so you can't work those bugs out at compile time. It rare to see a large peice of software written in PHP that doesn't have bugs all over the place. This just seems to be the rule from my experience; PHP is the wild west of standards, assuming there are any, it's hard to find libraries to import (which happens in a variety of ways... sometimes they are compiled into PHP) in a sensible fashion... I think SPL (autoloader in paticular) was meant to help, and it did help some.... kinda.
Now, if you're wanting to write a small script. PHP takes the cake; hands down. All that strict typing stuff only gets in the way, it's small enough that you can examine nearly all points of failure and determine for yourself which are important ones to tackle and which ones can slide.
Your point is well made. I agree that it's difficult to work with most PHP authors and I don't see that as a limiting factor to the language directly. I suggest that the Alchemist pick up Netbeans and CakePHP. I think he'll be delighted to see how much can be tackled with CakePHP. Using a framework is a smart idea if you're planning on a large system. It can also help you to not repeat yourself.