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End of life (date unknown)

2014-06-14 13:00:45
You may have noticed that last years little features have been added to the open source edition. New features where kept in te commercial edition. This happended because this website did not attract enough feedback and participation to justify the extra effort of developing documentation and taking the risk of liablility. In other words, the open source project was unsuccessfull. It was kept alive for reasons external to the project itself: It made MetaClass' innovative style of development more acceptable to customers.

But this has changed. The PHP language has matured, OO design patterns and practices where adopted (TOGAF) and with them came a more conservative attitude and a fixed idea about how an application framework should work. phpPeanuts does not fit into that idea. In the first place because it was developed before that idea was around. But also because its design decisions where based on eXtreme programming, not on TOGAF. It was developed in conjunction with some practical applications from which reoccurring elements where refactored into a framework. It was meant to be the simpelest thing that could possibly work for an abstract web based user interface that could work with as little specification as possible (convention over specification) on top of am ORM-med domain model with metadata. Flexibility for the applications was considered important, for the framework it was a matter of tradeoffs against simplicity.

In our experience user interface development generally takes over 70 % of development time. phpPeanuts gave MetaClass a developer productivity of about two hours per Entity class for an initial application prototype, and about 5-20 for the final product, depending on the amount of specialization required. This came at the disadvantage of a steep learning curve and making the development more like maintenance. Probably the reasons why phpPeanuts had so little success as an open souce project.
2014-06-14 13:04:11
It is still surpising to see that other frameworks need orders of magnitude more code to accomplish less with respect to application user interfaces. But you can't stop progress. The process of development of reusable components in conjunction with a real life application was repeated last months, this time in top of Symfony 2 and Doctrine. Developer productivity has creeped up from disasterous to acceptable. This means the end of life of phpPeanuts is now a matter of 'when' rather then 'if'. As long as existing applications require it, it will be maintained. This is not as big a task as it may seem. Because it is using only a limited set of php functions, the impact of changes in PHP so far has been quite small.

The new components for Symfony 2 will probably not be open source as a whole, but some of them may. One actually is, it's called Authentication Guard Bundle and it aims to protect log in forms against attacks. You can find it on github.com/metaclass-nl .

I thank the few who did respond and participate for their effort and all the others for their attention. It has been very educational.
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