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/Dev/Hell Podcast:
Episode 42 Hacking Difficult People
March 26, 2014 @ 11:48:47

The /Dev/Hell podcast has posted the latest episode of their show, Episode #42 - Hacking Difficult People. This show features hosts Ed Finkler and Chris Hartjes joind by guest Laura Thomson, a Manager at Mozilla.

For episode 42 we are blessed by the wonderful and talented Laura Thomson, Senior Engineering Manager at Mozilla. Laura drops science on managing engineers, Minimum Viable Bureaucracy, HHVM and Hack, and her mid-Atlantic coast accent. This is a must-listen for folks who manage tech teams.

Some of the topics mentioned in this episode include RCS, "The Tyranny of Structurelessness", the HHVM blog and the CodeIgniter project's search for a new home. You can listen to this episode either through the in-page player or by downloading the mp3.

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Link: http://devhell.info/post/2014-03-24/hacking-difficult-people/

Ibuildings Blog:
Accessing object properties by reference
May 05, 2008 @ 14:38:49

On the Ibuildings blog today, Harrie Verveer has posted about an interesting quirk he found when working with objects and references:

PHP is a loosely typed language. Most of the time this is very useful because you as a programmer don't have to worry about typecasting: it's done for you. However, on some occasions this can cause some unexpected trouble. [...] In this blog I want to point out what can happen if you try to access object properties by reference when the object is not initialized.

His example shows the problem when it tries to grab a value from an array in a non-existent object by reference. It results in a dyanamically created object (of that type) with an empty array inside of it. It only works when you grab it by reference, but he shares a tip or two about how you can prevent hard to track down issues like this.

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Jeff Moore's Blog:
Why is PHP Code Considered Hard to Maintain?
November 10, 2006 @ 07:34:00

In his latest blog entry, Jeff Moore tries to dispel a rumor about PHP code that's been floating around for years now - that it's considered hard to maintain.

The technocrat, heavily invested in his own technical prowess, faced with successful yet technically inferior code experiences cognitive dissonance. The only thing to do is to belittle the successful, but surely offensive code. "I could write better code than this," he says, or "this code sucks," or "this is unmaintainable."

Unfortunately, what Jeff says about many programmer's first introduction to PHP is right - that they download a popular application to check it out. This code is not always, shall we say, stellar. Jeff also brings up the point that the "PHP doesn't scale" myth goes hand in hand with this. After all, the larger the application, the larger the code, right? And the larger the code, the less maintainable it is, right?

Of course not - there are wonderful large PHP applications that are as easy to jump into and add/modify functionality to and keep up to date as there are small. PHP has one major thing going for it - it's simple nature lets developers keep things simple, and simple is good.

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