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I see a lot of crazy stuff lately that doesn't look like PHP. I assume it's because we now accept calls outside via JSON. What is acceptable anymore?

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Not sure if you are referring to this website or to the web in general.

In first case, this is a Q&A website about WordPress, not PHP.

If there's anything that's not about PHP, but about different other technologies that are part of WP core, there's no reason we should not accept the questions, unless there are other reasons that make the question off topic.

In the second case, it is not a secret that there's a general push towards a WordPress ecosystem based on javascript and REST API.

This will probably gives a façade of modernity to end users that is pivotal for marketing purposes, and that's enough reason to ignore the obsolescence of the PHP code that stinks behind the scenes.

I have no doubt that is something that will be very welcomed by users, keeping up the run to the conquest of the 50% of the web, but I have even more confidence that at same time it will provide increasing frustration to developers who have to fight that obsolescence and the stubborn belief that everything outside the WordPress bubble is not worth any attention in the best case and deserves just mockery in the worst.

But another non-secret is that developers' satisfaction has never been a priority for WordPress.

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    in addition, since web server administration is officially "on topic", even without the REST API we already should be accepting questions (and answers) in scripting languages, mainly shell scripts but not only. – Mark Kaplun Jan 22 '17 at 7:46

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