Exploring the LAMP Stack

HTML5 is the future. If that wasn’t clear to me before, then it certainly is now. I’ve known for a while that the plug-in model (Flash, Silverlight) weren’t the long-term solution, but all that XAML goodness kept me hanging around and hoping in vein. Over the last two years I’ve spent about as much time in WPF and Silverlight as I have in ASP.NET. The development environment and technology stack are very appealing to developers. The problem is that the end user doesn’t really care how an application was developed as long as it is available to them when and where they need it. It is this observation that has led me to return to the technology that will work on any platform that has a browser.

To that end I’ve been exploring the Linux, Apache, MySQL, PHP (LAMP) stack recently. If I’m going to step outside of the Silverlight bubble, then why not explore the platform that has been used to create so many successful online projects. What I’ve found so far has left me very impressed. Without any real knowledge of language, syntax, or tools, I was able to get a website up and running in just two days. It wasn’t a sophisticated website, nor did it really do anything that useful, but it did prove out a number of important concepts that would pave the way for a larger project. I was able to successfully build two web services, one using SOAP and WSDL, the other a REST based service using JSON. I was able to retrieve data from a MySQL database via these services and digest it from an AJAX client. Deployment is as simple as copying files over ftp. No configuration, no magic project files or solutions, or .user files to confuse and confound. The tools are certainly not as advanced as Visual Studio, but so far I’m very impressed by all that I’ve seen. Stay tuned for more.

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