I check the PHP site once in a while to see if there are any new updates and to my surprise the other day they announced that PHP 5.3 alpha has been released. We’d love to put it on Hawk Host to play around, but at this time it’s not meant for a production environment. This of course does not stop you from loading it up on a virtual private server from us and playing around with it that way.
- Namespaces (documentation maybe out dated)
- Late static binding and __callStatic
- Lambda functions and closures
- Addition of the intl, phar (phar is scheduled for some more work a head of alpha2), fileinfo and sqlite3 extensions
- Optional cyclic garbage collection
- Optional support for the MySQLnd replacement driver for libmysql
- Windows older than Windows 2000 (Windows 98, NT4, etc.) are not supported anymore (details)
- New syntax features like NOWDOC, limited GOTO, ternary short cut “?:”
So there are quite a few useful things coming to PHP 5.3 which I believe originally were going to show up in PHP 6 but these features were deemed backward compatible enough to be in PHP 5.3.
So based on things right now we do not expect a stable version of PHP 5.3 based on the PHP wiki until September or October. So I personally cannot wait for some of these features!