Blog by nikic. Find me on GitHub, StackOverflow and Twitter. Learn more about me.
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About Me

Hi! My name is Nikita Popov, but you’ll mostly meet me as nikic on the internet. I’m working as a software developer at JetBrains on the PhpStorm team. Before that, I studied computer science and physics at the Technical University of Berlin. I contribute to the PHP and LLVM projects and maintain a number of open-source PHP libraries.

Feel free to contact me via Alternatively you can usually find me in the PHP chatroom on StackOverflow.


My most popular open-source projects, sorted by stars:

  • PHP-Parser – A PHP parser written in PHP
  • FastRoute – Fast request router for PHP
  • scalar_objects – Extension that adds support for method calls on primitive types in PHP
  • iter – Iteration primitives using generators
  • php-ast – Extension exposing PHP 7 abstract syntax tree
  • PHP-Fuzzer – A fuzzer for PHP libraries

I also maintain the LLVM compile-time tracker.

Accepted PHP proposals

PHP 8.0:

PHP 7.4:

PHP 7.3:

PHP 7.2:

PHP 7.1:

PHP 7.0:

PHP 5.6:

PHP 5.5:


  • PHP 7: What changed internally? [IPC’15]
  • PHP 7: What changed internally? [PHP Barcelona’15]
    (slides, video)
  • PHP 7: What changed internally? [Forum PHP’15]
    (slides, video)
  • PHP language trivia [PHPKonf’17]
  • Static Optimization of PHP bytecode [PHPSC’17]
  • Static Optimization of PHP bytecode [phpDay’17]
  • Typed Properties and more: What’s coming in PHP 7.4? [PHP Russia’19]
    (slides, video)

Theses and Papers

  • Spinor formulation of Lanczos potentials in Riemannian Geometry [Bachelor Physics]
  • Optimizing PHP Bytecode using Type-Inferred SSA Form [Bachelor CS]
  • The Tradeoff of Latency, Reliability and Rate for Spinal Codes [Master CS]
  • Static Optimization of PHP 7 [CC’17]
    (pdf, acm)