Fabulous PHP frameworks: Zend Framework

The Zend Framework offers a comprehensive feature set and popular components in return for a significant time investment

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Zend_Db does not implement an active record pattern (a pattern employed by default in Ruby on Rails). Zend engineers explained they decided not to on account of that pattern's shortcomings in performance and flexibility. They also decided not to implement an Object Relational Mapper (ORM) in Zend_Db, partly because ORMs are complex and -- in their words -- "difficult to get right," and partly because other projects, such as the Doctrine ORM, were already tackling ORM.

The Zend Framework team has partnered with the Dojo Foundation to provide first-class integration for the Dojo JavaScript toolkit. In addition, community volunteers have created tools for jQuery integration that mimic the support and API provided in the Dojo integration.

The Zend Framework's online documentation includes a programmer's reference guide, which also incorporates a quick-start introduction for neophytes. Other getting-started guides target specific components of the framework. For example, the website features a starter guide for the Zend_Search_Lucene component, which supports the Lucene full-text indexing and search system. Other resources on the website include a guide for improving application performance using intelligent class loading and an unfortunately brief section that covers database performance enhancements. Finally, the website is home to a collection of nearly 30 webinars on a wide range of topics such as application testing, debugging, security issues, AJAX, and more.

There is much to learn in the Zend Framework. If you're looking for a comprehensive library of PHP Web-building components, you're likely to find all you'll need in Zend. But if you want to get your website off the ground quickly, Zend is probably not your best choice.

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This article, "Fabulous PHP frameworks: Zend Framework," was originally published at InfoWorld.com. Follow the latest news in software development and PHP at InfoWorld.com. For the latest business technology news, follow InfoWorld.com on Twitter.

Copyright © 2011 IDG Communications, Inc.

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