A new PHP framework is on the scene: Kohana. Kohana is a fork of the CodeIgniter framework. Originally the chosen name was BlueFlame but this had trademark issues. The given reason for the fork is about who controlled where CodeIgniter was heading, and was responsible for new releases. Though CodeIgniter is released under an open source license (which meant the fork could happen), it is controlled by EllisLab, not the user community as wished by the starters of Kohana. EllisLab has ExpressionEngine (a content management system) as a commercial product, and some say this as slowing down new releases of CodeIgniter.
Kohana has made a 1.0 release which is compatible with CodeIgniter 1.5.x, but with some fixes and new features. It does not include a user guide as some licensing issues about use of the CodeIgniter user manual needed to be solved. At the moment there is no concrete resolution about the future license of the Kohana framework.
So for the future? As long as EllisLab have ExpressionEngine then CodeIgniter will continue, but it may be poorer for the loss of community support. Kohana may struggle but diversity is what makes FOSS software work. It will be interesting how long the 2 stay compatible.
Kohana 2.0 was officially released today. It’s almost a complete rewrite of 1.0 and takes full advantage of PHP5. Be sure to check it out at http://www.kohanaphp.com.