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DigitalOcean Community Blog:
Horizontally Scaling PHP Applications A Practical Overview
April 24, 2015 @ 13:06:49

On the Digital Ocean blog there's a new post with a "practical overview" of how to effectively scale PHP applications, specifically as it relates to horizontal scaling not vertical.

Shipping a website or application to production has its own challenges, but when it gets the right traction, it's a great accomplishment. It always feels good to see the visitor numbers going up, doesn't it? Except, of course, when your traffic increases so much that it crashes your little LAMP stack. [...] But fear not! There are ways to make your PHP application much more reliable and consistent. If the term scalability crossed your mind, you've got the right idea.

The article starts with a brief overview of what scalability is and the main difference between horizontal and vertical scaling (scaling out vs scaling up). They then get into a bit more detail about what horizontal scaling is and how it commonly works in relation to the average PHP application (complete with diagrams). They also talk about some things you can do inside your code to help make things flow a bit more smoothly including decoupling between services and user session/file consistency measures. There's also a bit at the end about load balancing but as that depends a good bit on what technology you're using and the actual load, they just provide an overview and some links to other articles and tutorials with more information.

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scaling application horizontal vertical decouple consistency loadbalance

Link: https://www.digitalocean.com/company/blog/horizontally-scaling-php-applications/

Freek Lijten:
Consistency vs. "The itch"
February 20, 2014 @ 09:11:31

In this latest post to his site Freek Lijten talks about "the itch" of having or working on something outside the normal project standards.

I assume everybody has certain rules, regulations, guidelines or conventions at their jobs/open source projects. I like structure and consistency so, as long as they are sensible, these things make me happy. Still, every once in a while, something itches. What wins, itch or convention?

He gives an example from some of his current work with an "itch" around using only a call to a registry to save information where business logic isn't needed. He recommends not scratching the itch though, as consistency should win out over other solutions. As he points out, "one day, you will have the need for business logic" and you want to have that structure there to fit it into.

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consistency programming development methodology itch

Link: http://www.freeklijten.nl/home/2014/02/18/Consistency-vs.-The-itch

Reddit.com:
Let's Make PHP's Function Names Consistent!
January 25, 2013 @ 10:32:57

On Reddit.com there's a heated discussion going on in response to this bug filed asking about aliasing PHP function names to make them more consistent (specifically "htmlentities_decode" versus "html_entity_decode").

[...] Current naming conventions are really horrible. For instance, look at differences between str_replace, strlen, parse_str, htmlspecialchars. All work with same type but their names are completely different. So, string functions should go to String namespace (Stringreplace()), array functions to Array namespace (Arraysearch()) and so on.

Back in the Reddit post most of the commentors agree that this kind of thing would be beneficial to the language, but - as several point out - this could have serious backwards compatibility issues. What do you think? Voice your opinion!

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function naming consistency language opinion


SitePoint PHP Blog:
Good and Bad PHP Code
May 28, 2007 @ 09:02:00

On the SitePoint PHP blog today, Kevin Yank shares his thoughts in the form of a list for what makes for "good" and "bad" PHP code.

When interviewing a PHP developer candidate for a job at SitePoint, there is one question that I almost always ask, because their answer tells me so much about the kind of programmer they are. Here's the question: "In your mind, what are the differences between good PHP code and bad PHP code?"

Among the items on the list for the good side are things like: structure, consistency, security, and portability. He gives a bit of example code that shows the three levels of "goodness" in a script (using $_GET variables).

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good bad example list structure consistency portability security good bad example list structure consistency portability security



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