Cowburn — Find me on GitHub and StackOverflow.

Becoming the editor of the PHP manual

For those that don’t like reading, here’s a summary: I am now the editor of the PHP manual.

Last week Philip Olson, the outgoing editor, stepped down after eight years holding the reins. Volunteering to be his replacement has been on my mind for a long while, and Philip had been mulling the idea over with me for months. After his announcement, I requested to take over, and thankfully received great support from the rest of the team. Volunteering was not any easy choice because it means committing to providing time, work and responsibility to the project. As a manual author (since 2009), there were no real committments: authors get the luxury of choosing the subjects they’re most interested in to write about, can take breaks whenever the fancy strikes (even for years), and can resolve bugs in areas they know most about or have particular interest to them. The editor, on the other hand, has the responsibility for seeing the big picture. This will mean having to work on areas of the manual that I know little about (every day is a school day), do tasks that may be tedious, to be a primary point-of-contact to onboard new authors, spearhead changes to our documentation practices, and so on.

Thanks again to everyone for supporting my request, and I very much look forward to helping the team to further improve the PHP manual in the future. The documentation team is a fantastic bunch of people, and you are more than welcome to come and join in. You can also email me directly (, introduce yourself to the documentation mailing list (, all messages are public), or come hang out on IRC (#php.doc on

We’re currently making a push towards getting the awesome PHP 7 features documented before that get released later in the year, so there are lots and lots of neat little changes that need to get done, which are ideal for newcomers to get to grips with our documentation processes.