So the blogs are a twitter and the tubes are getting clogged with all the chat about HioHop, well at least in the PHP Community. The buzz is really not bad considering that the HipHop translator hasn't even been published yet (at least at the time of writing it has not been put on github) and there really are a metric ton of posts about what it is and what it could mean to the community or not, but one of the things I've yet to see addressed are the business implications of HipHop.
So, here I am, a PHP developer who has never touched HipHop, what am I doing writing about the business implications? Well that's actually fairly simple, like every other developer in the known world, I have a home business too (at least I'm trying to have one) and one of the things I've been playing with is the idea of creating a static package to sell has been an interesting one. In PHP if you sell a package or library you generally deliver either a. a file structure exposing every line of PHP written or b. a mess of files that have been "obfuscated" or locked through a tool like Zend_Encoder or Ion Cube. The thing is if you're wanting to sell something as closed source, currently it's not really possible to compile and send a binary form to the end customer, well HipHop will be changing that, in ways that we haven't even really fully thought about or discussed, being able to deliver an executable with an exposed api (via services at the very least) rather excites me.
Beyond the excitement to me, this also means more to the community, being able to attract businesses who want to sell a product will only improve the PHP support in HipHop and drive training in the language, especially once HipHop supports Windows. One of the other things I've been seeing lately is talk about getting HipHop to support running through a fastcgi interface, if that's the case then we could easily run via IIS alongside of ASP.NET, it'll be interesting to see what happens in the long-term though because I'm sure there are other implications I haven't even thought about yet.