PHP Meeting Recap – August 14th

This recap is a summary of this week’s PHP meeting. It highlights the ideas and decisions which came up during that meeting, both as a means of documenting and to provide a quick overview for those who were unable to attend.

The meeting’s chat log.

Attendees: @afragen @desrosj @dimadin @drewapicture @flixos90 @jdgrimes @mikeschroder @nerrad @pross @schlessera @sergey @spacedmonkey @stevenkword @tfrommen

Chat Summary

The agenda for this week’s meeting to continue our efforts for the planned .org page to educate and convine mainly non-technical users about the benefits and necessity of PHP upgrades. Here are the highlights from the discussion:

  • There is now a new GitHub organization for the core PHP team, and a repository as a central location for the work towards the new page, which now lives under the temporary codename “servehappy”.
  • There’s furthermore an additional repository as a collection of third-party resources on the topic, such as articles or hosting-/tool-specific upgrade tutorials. Some of those will be good references and inspiration for our own version.
  • Everyone is welcome to contribute to both of those.
    • The primary task for the “servehappy” repository will be to open issues for the benefits we’ve come up with over the past few weeks, and discuss them one by one, whether they qualify for the page and how they can be framed in the most convincing way. A project board exists to get a quick overview about where each of those benefits stands in terms of workflow.
    • Any useful resource found about the topic should be added to the resources repository. This can happen in a very intuitive way, as you don’t even have to fork the repository to enhance it. Simply use one of the file editing buttons to make your changes, and create a pull-request from it. Enhancing the resources list is much appreciated too.
  • @nerrad suggested to also have issues for the different sections planned for the page (see last week’s recap for the proposed outline). A project view for these has been created since, which is a work in progress.
  • While we call the first section “What we want from you”, this title should only be used for ourselves to remind us what we’re using the page for and that this should be conveyed in the first section. However, that should be phrased in a way so that the site visitor does not feel put under pressure. It should go more into a direction like “Once you’ve read this page, you will want this too”.
  • The section “What should you need to know before doing an update?” must not unnecessarily make the user worry. Let’s highlight possible issues, but not overestimate them. People should see upgrading as a good thing, and we should point them at how they can determine whether their sites are ready.
  • Users should briefly be educated about the natural requirement of software updates, and that PHP is just the same. Phrases like “Now you need to do this every … months” must not be used, but a more general way that highlights the benefits of staying up to date and that, in order to do so, upgrades are occasionally required. If site owners are not made aware of this, the next upgrade request will be just as painful as this one.
  • An important goal of the page is to improve the distribution of the PHP versions as collected by the installation/update stats of WordPress.org.
  • At the end of the chat, we talked about PHP versions a bit, and which jumps were more critical or problematic than others.@mikeschroder highlighted that the jump from 5.2 to 5.3 was actually one of the hardest, while 5.6 to 7.0 was quite smooth. @schlessera added that 7.1 is a bit more problematic than 7.0 because of some of the changes involved.@mikeschroder will try to see if they still have data at DreamHost about the 5.2->5.3 jump that they could share. He furthermore reminded ask to ask more of these questions in the #hosting-community channel.

The takeaway of this week was that we should finally get in touch with the marketing team. Let’s work on adding a brief one or two sentences for each of the sections that were proposed in last week’s meeting to give them more context, to provide a better foundation for the #marketing team. This can happen via GitHub. More benefits should be added as issues on GitHub as well.

Next week’s meeting

The next meeting will take place on Monday 18:00 UTC, as always in #core-php, and its agenda will be to continue discussing the page outline, benefits and further coordination. If you have suggestions but cannot make the meeting, please leave a comment on this post so that we can take them into account. See you next week!

#core-php, #php, #summary