Due to some travel for a MySQL developer meeting, I wasn't able to attend this week's Zend PHP Conference in Santa Clara, but it looks like things are going very well.
Zend has announced new partnerships and inititiatives to further increase adoption of PHP applications in the enterprise. Key among these is an announcement with Adobe to collaborate on Rich Internet Applications using the open source Flex framework. Adobe will add support for Flex's Action Message Framework protocol into the Zend framework, which should make it much easier for PHP developers to build apps from a combination of Ajax, Flex and Adobe AIR.
Zend is seeing broader adoption of PHP among corporate developers, a trend that mirrors adoption of MySQL and other portions of the LAMP stack. My belief is that PHP has become the language of choice for rapid application development in the web, much like Visual Basic was in the 90's for Windows Client/Server apps.
If you're a developer and don't have skills in PHP, it's worth considering a crash course in PHP and the Zend Framework. Together they take a lot of the pain out of routine web development. The latest update ZF 1.6 includes support for Lucene, Captcha form elements, more components and dozens of bug fixes.