[nycphp-talk] Zend PHP Certification

Tim Gales tgales at
Sun Jun 20 12:26:22 EDT 2004

> --- Tim Gales <tgales at> wrote:
> > I would agree with you that is not solely Zend's idea
> > of certification -- there are indeed many people who have 
> > done a *lot* for PHP who agree there should be some sort of 
> > standard set for being a PHP programmer.
> I think Daniel is referring to the fact that Zend hired these 
> people as consultants to help create the certification.

Yes, I and am agreeing with him there. But I am also widening the 
scope to include not just the 'these people'

> > But what I am saying is that I find it hard to put
> > much stock in the value of a certification for a 
> > simple language which can be learned in an afternoon -- 
> > it doesn't make any sense.
> I would put a considerable amount of money against this. I 
> know a lot of talented programmers, and those who don't know 
> PHP could not pass this certification if given only a 24 hour 
> notice. PHP interoperates with many technologies, so the 
> certification is broader than you might be thinking.

I guess I wasn't too clear there -- I was trying to restate  
the case (from earlier in the thread) that a certification in 
the language alone would not be of much value.

When it comes to talking about the level of expertise and 
and knowledge required to pass the 'this certification' you 
(and Daniel) are infinitely more qualified than I am to talk 
about that -- you helped create the Zend test questions.

But I don't believe that I might be thinking that the 
Zend certification (test) will not be broad in terms of how 
'PHP interoperates with many technologies' -- just the 
reverse, I mentioned that I thought it might take more than 
70 or so questions to cover all the areas mention in the 
'12 chapters' -- again I don't have any real knowledge on 
that (not knowing what the questions are). And it could very well  
be, that the questions in their final form will adequately 
cover what needs to be tested.

> > I have never seen an accountant's business card
> > that says: 'Microsoft Excel Certified'
> This analogy doesn't work very well. When hiring an 
> accountant, I can't imagine anyone caring what tools are 
> used. 

"Est. No.J. Dist co. catering to Fortune 500 clients seeks 
talented Staff Acct. Duties: monthly, quarterly & y-end closing. 
Maint GL, AR, AP, sales track, invent control, reporting & acct recs. 
Must possess a BA/BS in Acctg w/min 3 yrs exp. 
Strong analytical & Excel skills a must. Knowl of Great Plains is a + ."

Prospective employers most certainly do care what tools 
their potential employees know how to use -- and they 
state their concerns in the job requirements.

> However, with most technology projects, people do care. 
> Have you seen a job announcement that simply asks for a 
> skilled and experienced Web application developer? I haven't.

No, of course not -- they have job requirements too.
But the job requirement go something like: " 4 yrs exp 
Java and knowledge of CGI scripting in a UNIX environment..."

> I wouldn't measure the value of a certification according to 
> whether people would want it on a business card. I think a 
> resume is a more common and appropriate place for this.
Well I won't get into where's the more appropriate place 
to put one's certification.

However, many, many -- if not all - Microsoft Certified 
Solution Developers have 'MCSD' prominently displayed on 
their business cards. (It is one of the motivating factors in 
becoming certified) -- it is definitely not less common.
> Rather than wasting time trying to predict opinions, Zend is 
> doing something, and people will have a chance to voice their 
> opinions with their wallets. I'm sure their voices will be heard.

There I couldn't agree with you more -- time will tell.

T. Gales & Associates
'Helping People Connect with Technology'

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