In contrast to the other companies that contribute to PHP, there is one bad apple, Apple. (drumroll)
To clarify a few things, I work on the PHP internals, that is the underlying C code that is PHP. My primary development environment for this is a Mac and you could say that I'm a long standing Apple fan boy.
So if you've ever tried to compile PHP on OS X, you'll most likely have problems using the default system libraries and in the end you'll use macports to install libxml and iconv. If you're not trying to compile your own versions of PHP and want to use a PECL extension then you'll find that the binary has had all the symbols stripped. Mid last year I tried to get some of these resolved, and filed a bug report with Apple but was informed these weren't bugs.
Since these weren't bugs and were more a support issue I dropped an email to the Apple Developer Connection address enquiring about getting some help from Apple. The speedy response from a helldesk operator was that for an all time low fee of $499.00 I could get some help from their support technicians.
Assuming I hadn't made it clear that this wasn't a commercial venture I did my best to explain that PHP is an Open Source project and that there was no magical bag of cash in which to give to Apple. If the PHP group had any sort of funds I'd be more than happy to pay. I even went on to explain that the software is already bundled with OS X and we wanted to make it better. I wasn't able to convince them it would be worthwhile and simple got ignored.
Skip forward a few months to December and I decided to give this another go, but this time I start out explaining that the software is already bundled, that we have no money pot to which to dive into and that we just needed some help with the abomination that is the bundled OS X libraries. This time I get a promise of a response soon as they forward it between departments, I let things slide until January and poked them again with the promise of a response soon.
Now its February, and the fact that I'm writing this blog post should suggest that Apple have yet to get back to me with any sort of response.
What was essentially asked for was help to improve PHP on OS X, but this has fallen on deaf ears. Apple are happy to take PHP but don't seem as keen to contribute anything back to the project. Yes they are perfectly entitled to do this, PHP is open source after all. But is waiving a $499 charge too much to ask?
It should be noted that I did manage to partially resolve one of the issues I was originally trying to contact Apple about, so with PHP 5.3+ you'll see support for a few of the missing DNS functions. However there is no guarantee this will work on newer versions of OS X since the PHP project has no access to the future OS X betas.
So if someone reading this knows someone at Apple who can help then leave a comment or drop me an email.