Facebook’s own PHP compiler

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I’ll let you read all about Facebook new (Just in Time) compiler for PHP after yesterday rumours of Facebook rewriting the PHP runtime:

The rumors have been flying over what’s going on over at Facebook headquarters. The word has been that a PHP team was brought in and made to sign non-disclosure agreements before discussing a PHP project that has been in development for the past two years. Alex Handy, senior editor of the Software Development Times Blog, predicted last Saturday that Facebook “has rewritten the PHP runtime from scratch,” and several sources have confirmed for us tonight that Facebook has indeed been making some changes to the basic PHP runtime environment.

According to our sources, Facebook has been working on a PHP compiler that will
increase speed by around 80% and offer a just-in-time (JIT) compilation engine that will offer a number of advantages. The project is very similar to Google’s Unladen Swallow project, which rebuilt the Python compiler, boosting the speed fivefold and opening the door for multi-language integration.

Richard Crowley, an engineer at OpenDNS who is familiar with the project, told us that David Recordon, an engineer at Facebook, invited him to come to Facebook’s headquarters Tuesday morning but wouldn’t give a reason. Crowley mused to us that it was likely his PHP skills and personal connections that got him through the doors and clued us in on what he thinks will be going on behind them.

Read more at ReadWriteWeb

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