We Are Looking for Developers to Join the PHP Foundation

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Working on an open-source project which is used by millions of developers and which is trusted by hundreds of thousands of businesses around the world. Getting paid for this work and not having a burnout. Sounds like a dream, doesn't it? But this is exactly the opportunity that the PHP Foundation provides to those who would like to develop and maintain the PHP language.

The PHP Foundation is a non-profit organization, started in 2021 by Acquia, Automattic, Craft CMS, JetBrains, Laravel, PrestaShop, Private Packagist, Symfony, Tideways, and Zend by Perforce with a mission to support, advance, and develop the PHP language.

Since April 2022, the foundation pays six developers to work on the language. See what the foundation accomplished in 2022 in the Impact and transparency report.

We are opening applications for new positions at the PHP Foundation

The PHP Foundation is almost two years old, and we are gradually introducing structure into our activities and organizing processes. We’re opening a new round of applications for developer positions. We plan to open applications every September from now on, so if you are unable to apply now, you will have another chance next year. We intend to decide on who we will hire by the end of October. If selected, you would start your work January 1st, 2024.

The application form will be open until September 30, 2023.


Note: This is not a job for PHP developers or aspiring PHP developers.
The development of PHP is done in the С programming language, and requires proficiency in system programming.

What are the requirements?

As before, we require previous experience in PHP core development. Ideally you should have all, but at least some of the following:

  • Pull-requests / commits to php/php-src
  • Experience in writing PHP extensions
  • Participation in PHP mailing lists
  • Contributions to other open-source projects

This time, however, we have a clearer idea of the tasks that can be engaged in and so the pool of considered candidates will be wider.

What am I going to work on?

Strategic areas we’d like you to work on:

  • Security
  • Performance
  • Infrastructure
  • Web APIs (json, PDO, streams, etc.)
  • Documentation

This is not an exhaustive list, and if you would like to do something else, make sure to mention it in the form. The main criteria is a pragmatic approach. In this sense, we adhere to the position that Rasmus Lerdorf, the author of PHP, voiced back in 2014:

And rather than piling on language features with the main justification
being that other languages have them, I would love to see more focus on
practical solutions to real problems. The password_hash() addition in
5.5 is a good example of addressing a real Web problem.
I know these are much harder and less sexy than adding a couple
of tokens to the yacc grammar, but when we start looking at a new major
release this is what I hear from people who are running PHP in
production environments are looking for. Language features are nice, if
they are well thought out, but significant infrastructure improvements
are nicer.


What does working for the PHP foundation look like?

Working for the PHP Foundation offers a lot of freedom, but it also requires discipline. Your work will roughly consist of the following:

  • 40% Triaging issues and fixing bugs
  • 30% Working on strategic areas
  • 20% Code reviews
  • 10% Preparing RFCs and developing new language features

As you can see, developing new RFCs is a fairly small part of the job. Most of the work is a typical maintenance of an open source project.

We are a fully distributed team. You can work from any place* and at any time. All communication is asynchronous via GitHub, Slack, and Email. We meet for synchronous calls 1-2 times a month.

* We do not consider applications from persons residing in sanctioned territories.

Your work should be in line with the foundation’s mission statement, and we expect you to follow the code of conduct.

PHP Foundation Mission Statement

The PHP Foundation is a collective of people and organizations relying on the PHP language. Its mission is to ensure the long-term prosperity of the PHP language. The PHP Foundation focuses on providing financial support and guidance to PHP language developers to support its goals of improving the language for its users, providing high-quality maintenance, and improving the PHP language project to retain current contributors and to integrate new contributors. The PHP Foundation aims to promote the public image of the PHP language in the interest of retaining existing and gaining new users and contributors.

How to apply?

Submit your application now and we will get back to you shortly. If you have any questions or suggestions, reach out to contact@thephp.foundation.

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