So, back when I was still doing PHP, the story went like this: “We have this kinda okay framework which is documented okay and there are almost no plugins or contributions, so you’re on your own, and if things don’t work, well, you’re screwed, enjoy digging in the depths of the ‘magic’ code.” As soon as you try to do something the framework creators haven’t thought of, it’s like clubbing wild bears to death with only your bare hands and small sticks, in the mud, while torrential rain is falling on you and the air reeks of sulphur. Boy, am I glad I’m done with PHP.
With Rails, it’s different: “We have this super awesome framework which is pretty well documented [ed: in blog posts], oh, except, the new version [ed: rails 3] isn’t, and we have a gazillion of plugins and stuff, but they’re mostly not documented at all, so you’re best off reading the source, and the plugins might or might not work with your version of rails, or they might eat your soul.” You still end up fighting the framework and the plugins, but at least you’re doing it with rapiers. It’s a very civilized form of combat.
(A vaguely related side note, it’s a damn shame how much Yahoo! sucks. They had this great search engine, owned the market, and then they got the idea that they were a ‘media company’ with ‘producers’ managing ‘properties’ and they turned the suck up to eleven. Nowadays, they have a great bunch of very bright people, yet still manage to turn out mostly products that suck. It is quite astonishing. Also, what is it with them launching products and then just discontinuing them a few months later? Are they trying to be like Google?)