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PHP.net:
PHP 5.5.0 Alpha4 released
January 24, 2013 @ 09:29:39

On PHP.net today they've announced the tagging and release of the latest alpha for the PHP 5.5.0 series - PHP 5.5.0 alpha4:

The PHP development team announces the release of PHP 5.5.0alpha4. This release fixe some bugs from alpha3 and add some new features. All users of PHP are encouraged to test this version carefully, and report any bugs in the bug tracking system.

There's new improvements included in this non-production release including class name resolution with "class" keyword and the DateTimeImmutable class. You can see the NEWS file for the complete list of changes. If you'd like to help test it out, you can download the preview release here (or here for Windows users).

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alpha release language class keyword datetimeimmutable test


Sherif Ramadan:
Finally Getting finally In PHP?
August 09, 2012 @ 10:53:55

In this recent post to his site Sherif Ramadan looks at a proposal that's currently under view (RFC) to add the "finally" keyword to PHP.

It's quite possible that PHP may finally be getting the addition of the finally block in its try/catch block. [...] It also solves a simple, but overlooked problem for the developer. With finally we offer the user-space code a chance to do any clean up work that may be necessary after a try block has terminated execution and with clear semantics.

He includes a use case for this feature - an example showing exception handling on multiple levels and writing to log files when the cleanup of the exception is finished (without the potential for another method to trigger the exception itself). "Finally" allows you to take this logic out of the exception handling and put it at the end, removing the possibility of it triggering an exception for the wrong reason. There's a few other examples showing some other quirks with its usage - like calling die will not make it end up in the "finally".

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finally rfc keyword exception handling proposal


Sameer Borate's Blog:
Grabbing the referrer search engine keywords for a site
October 18, 2011 @ 13:25:27

On his blog today Sameer Borate has a new post with a handy bit of code you can use to find the keywords from a search engine referral to help with tracking how visitors have come to your site.

A couple of weeks back I had to write a solution for a client to track the referrer search engine from where the user came to his sites contact page, without using Google Analytics. If a user was to fill the contact form on the website, the referring search engine name and the keyword for which it was refereed was to be emailed along with the contact information. The following is a solution for the same.

The code itself is pretty simple - it checks the $_SERVER['HTTP_REFERER'] and, based on an array of search engine types, looks for a certain "query" keyname in the URL and matches what follows (with a regular expression). This can be useful for not only determining what sort of audience is visiting your site, but could also be used to present a custom message to visitors from certain search engines (or, more complicated, to show different content based on search terms).

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search engine keyword referrer url snippet


Evert Pot's Blog:
Taking advantage of PHP namespaces with older code
February 01, 2011 @ 10:10:35

Evert Pot has a quick post about a suggestion mentioned at PHPBenelux related to using namespaces with older code.

If you're running PHP 5.3 and you have to use pesky old code that uses long class prefixes (yea, so, pretty much all PHP code out there), you can still make use of namespace features to shorten them.

He includes a quick example that shows the shift from using the traditional Zend_Controller_Action_Helper_AutoComplete_Abstract to an aliasing with the use/as to just reference it as AutoComplete.

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namespace old code zendframework use keyword


SitePoint PHP Blog:
How to Use PHP Namespaces (Parts 2 &3)
July 15, 2009 @ 08:16:24

The SitePoint PHP blog has posted the next two parts of their series looking at using namespaces in PHP - parts 2 and 3:

In the second part of the series they build on the basics and look at importing namespaces into a script, aliasing them to a shorter, easier to use name and some rules to consider about name resolution.

The third part of the series (the last part) looks at the keywords the namespace functionality uses and how to autoload namespaced classes to keep their namespacing intact.

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autoload keyword alias import tutorial namespace


NETTUTS.com:
The Best Ways to Fight Spam
October 06, 2008 @ 09:30:28

Spam is a constant burden for anyone on the web, be it through email or via something like comments on a website. The NETTUTS site can't help so much with the first one, but they've come up with a new tutorial that can help with the second with a few methods.

Deciding on the best method of spam prevention on your blogs, forums, or even contact forms can be difficult. In this article we will take a look at a service called Akismet and how it can help. We will also look at why some other methods of fighting spam fail.

They give a few ways to waylay the spammers including:

  • Disallowing multiple consecutive submissions
  • Keyword Blacklist
  • CAPTCHA
  • and a service called Akismet

They go into a bit more detail on this last one, even going so far as to included code (this class) and examples of how to let the Akismet service see if something is spam or not. Links to libraries for other languages are included too.

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fight spam captcha consecutive keyword blacklist akismet tutorial


Matthew Weier O'Phinney's Blog:
Migrating OOP Libraries and Frameworks to PHP 5.3
July 02, 2008 @ 10:24:02

Matthew Weier O'Phinney recently posted about a method he's come up with for migrating your object-oriented libraries (including frameworks) over to the upcoming PHP 5.3 version of the language.

With PHP 5.3 coming up on the horizon, I'm of course looking forward to using namespaces.

He gives an example of how useful these namespaces can be for you and your code, but points out one failing point - trying to define classes in a namespace that are named the same as a built-in keyword for PHP. There's already been a suggestion to add a captial "I" in front of the class name to prevent this collision.

There's also the problem of throwing custom exceptions - unless you use the namespace properly your script will just throw a default exception.

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php5 namespace migrate library framework collision keyword exception


IBM developerWorks:
Use the YouTube API with PHP
April 16, 2008 @ 22:42:36

In this new tutorial on the IBM developerWorks website, they show you how - with a little simple HTML and PHP - to integrate functionality from the YouTube API into your site.

The YouTube video sharing site allows Web application developers to access public content through its REST-based developer API. [...] This article introduces the YouTube Data API, demonstrates how you can use it to browse user-generated video content; access video metadata, comments and responses; and perform keyword searches.

They help you get started by outlining the format that the YouTube messages use (Atom feeds) and how to run a query against the API and return back the custom data for things like video categories, popularity and the results of keyword searches.

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youtube api tutorial category keyword search atom feed


Jeff Moore's Blog:
Keywords and Language Simplicity
October 12, 2007 @ 11:55:00

Jeff Moore has posted and shared an interesting graph showing something I'd never thought about comparing one language versus another on - the number of keywords it uses.

Well, I like programming language comparisons, so how could I resist this chart (via) promoting the simplicity of the io language by pointing out how few keywords it has. The interesting thing about this is that Java and PHP are tied on this measure of simplicity with 53 keywords.

Though not too meaningful, it is interesting to see how the different languages stack up in the number of reserved words you can't use for anything else. So, does that mean that Perl is the list limiting?

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keyword language simplicity graph perl javascript ruby keyword language simplicity graph perl javascript ruby


David Sklar's Blog:
Runkit, "static", and inheritance
May 17, 2007 @ 08:43:00

David Sklar points out an issue that keeps coming up over and over again in the course of object-oriented applications - why the static keyword doesn't know about inheritance.

There are plenty of good reasons why PHP 5 works this way and it seems that in PHP 6 the static keyword will be able to be used in place of self to get the dynamic behavior a lot of folks are looking for. [...] All well and good once PHP 6 is done.

In the meantime, I was noodling around with runkit and came up with some glue that lets you do something like this.

In his runkit example uses a glue class called MethodHelper that uses various things (including some reflection) to manually look into the classes and find the static information.

A fun proof of concept, but not something (for efficiency reasons) you'd probably want to run on a busy production site.
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runkit inheritance static keyword php5 php6 oop runkit inheritance static keyword php5 php6 oop



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