has an overview of Zend, the next generation engine for PHP. One question that’s not answered in the article is whether PHP 4.0 will provide a better layer of abstraction between the scripting engine and the database. As it is now, there are different functions for every relational database, so if you move to a different database, you have to change lots of code. I’d like to see that change so that you use the same set of functions no matter which database you’re using, a la ODBC, JDBC, or DBD/DBI for Perl.