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Laravel News:
Controller Construct Session Changes in Laravel 5.3
Aug 30, 2016 @ 10:45:13

On the Laravel News site there's a post detailing some of the updates made to session and controller handling in v5.3 of the framework. It mostly revolves around how the middleware handling changed on each request from v5.2.

Back in laravel 5.2, a developer was able to interact with the session directly in a controller constructor. However, this has changed in laravel 5.3.

The difference between how the 5.3 & 5.2 handle an incoming request is that in 5.2 the request goes through 3 pipelines: global, route and controller [...] In 5.3 the request goes through only 2 Pipelines: global and route/controller (in one pipeline).

The post includes a quote from Taylor Otwell (creator and lead developer of the framework) about why this change was made. Then it shows an alternative to directly accessing this session information in your controllers: a Closure-based middleware in the constructor to execute your checks.

tagged: laravel controller session update access middleware change v53

Link: https://laravel-news.com/2016/08/controller-construct-session-changes-in-laravel-5-3/

Laravel News:
Easily Integrate HTTP/2 Server Push with a Laravel Middleware
Aug 12, 2016 @ 09:48:10

The Laravel News site has a recent post showing you how to integrate HTTP2 support into your Laravel-based application using some simple middleware.

As we all know technology changes fast and if you don’t stop and look around once in awhile, you could miss it. HTTP/2 is one area of our tech stack that I haven’t been keeping up with an honestly knew nothing about it until Laracon where Ben Ramsey gave a talk on the subject.

You can watch his talk here and his slide deck is available from his site to browse through. What amazed me is how easy it seemed to implement by utilizing server push or preload.

They describe this "Link" header process could work if done manually but points out that doing that manually for every asset is very time consuming. To help out they point out two packages that can help make it a bit more automatic. The post briefly shows their use (code example) basing the asset list on the contents of your Elixir configuration.

tagged: laravel middleware http2 push link header package

Link: https://laravel-news.com/2016/08/http2-server-push-middleware/

PHP Town Hall:
Episode 50: Low down on PSR-15
Jun 29, 2016 @ 09:20:22

The PHP Town Hall podcast has posted their latest episode (after a bit of hiatus) giving the low down on PSR-15, the proposed PHP-FIG standard for HTTP middleware.

n all star cast this episode, as Ben and Phil are joined by regular guest Anthony Ferrara - thinker of good ideas and long-time part-time side-line contributor to the PHP-FIG, Woody Gilk - one-speed rider & BDFL of Kohana, and Beau Simensen - author of a bunch of stuff including StackPHP.

Here we’re talking about some awesome stuff the PHP-FIG is working on: PSR-15 (HTTP Middleware). [...] We discuss all this, and the reason PSR-7 (HTTP Message) is not enough for the ecosystem to benefit from shareable middleware. [...] Woody provides a bit of the decision-making process in a very tricky aspect of the FIGs job, which is: should standards be built entirely to match existing implementations, or should standards try to improve on the learnings of the existing implementations to better them all as implementations change to support the standard. It’s all a bit chicken and egg, but a very worthy discussion to have.

You can catch this latest episode either through the in-page video player or directly on YouTube. If you enjoy the show, be sure to subscribe to their feed and get the latest as new shoes are released.

tagged: psr15 phpfig middleware proposal standard phptownhall podcast ep50

Link: https://phptownhall.com/episode-50-low-down-on-psr15/

Understanding Laravel Middleware
Jun 16, 2016 @ 13:20:48

The Scotch.io site has posted a tutorial that aims to help you understand middleware in Laravel applications - how they work and how to create ones based on your custom needs.

HTTP Middlewares provide a convenient mechanism for filtering HTTP requests entering your application. Laravel, for example, has a middleware for verifying a user's authentication.

These are some cases where I have had to resort to using middleware. There are many more cases where you would like to use a middleware. [...] By the end of this article, you should be able to create a middleware, registers it and use it in your projects. We will be illustrating the creation till usage of middlewares by creating one of our own. Our middleware will enable maintenance either site-wide or on some routes.

They start by creating a middleware (theirs is DownForMaintenance) and how to register it with Laravel as a valid middleware option. By default they will execute with every request but you can narrow them down to only happening on certain routes (examples included). There's also mentions of middleware parameters, grouping middleware and deferring the response return until after other code is executed.

tagged: laravel middleware introduction tutorial create execute configure

Link: https://scotch.io/tutorials/understanding-laravel-middleware

Phil Sturgeon:
Why Care About PHP Middleware?
Jun 02, 2016 @ 10:35:39

Phil Sturgeon has a post over on his site sharing some of his thoughts on PHP middleware and why he thinks it's worth paying attention to in your applications.

Recently there has been a lot of buzz about HTTP middleware in PHP. Since PSR-7 was accepted, everyone and their friend Sherly has been knocking out middleware implementations, some of them stunning, some of them half-arsed, and some of them rolled into existing frameworks. HTTP Middleware is a wonderful thing, but the PHP-FIG is working on a specific standard for middleware, which will standardise this mess of implementations, but some folks don't seem to think that would be useful.

Let's look into middleware a little closer, to show you why it's something to smile about.

He starts with a bit of background about the history of middleware in the PHP ecosystem and where they fit in the overall execution path. He lists out some of the middlewares that have already come out based on this surge in the community including CSRF protection, debugging and rate limiting handling. With various frameworks handling the request/response slightly differently, the PHP-FIG worked up a standard to make interoperability easier. He links to some other resources about middleware that have been posted and discussions he's had with other people about their usefulness.

HTTP Middleware is awesome. It lets frameworks do far less, it lets people distribute logic in a way often unseen popularly in PHP, it lets more of your application be reusable, and it lets PHP catch up with other popular languages used to build stuff on the web. PSR-7 was a great step towards this goal, but we need another PSR to get the whole way there.
tagged: middleware opinion psr7 request response phpfig example

Link: https://philsturgeon.uk/2016/05/31/why-care-about-php-middleware/

Andrew Carter:
PSR-7 Objects Are Not Immutable
May 24, 2016 @ 10:28:05

Andrew Carter has written up a new post about PSR-7 objects (the PHP-FIG defined standard for handling requests and responses in PHP applications) and how the objects themselves are immutable.

What’s happening [in the provided example] is that the Zend Expressive framework is rendering the error page to the same object that you wrote your message to. Whilst the actual message object itself is immutable, the body stream that it references is not. Even when this object is cloned or “modified” (to become a new object) it will still use the same stream.

He explains a bit about what this means in a more practical sense and why the PSR-7 standard and why this happens (as defined after much discussion). Then he gets into a more recent debate happening in the PHP-FIG about PSR-7 middleware and the proposal for a standard structure in its creation. He points to some of the thoughts from Anthony Ferrara on the topic and an example from Woody Gilk showing an exception handler and how having the stream always appending content is a bad thing in that particular case.

tagged: psr7 object immutability output zendexpressive middleware stream

Link: http://andrewcarteruk.github.io/programming/2016/05/22/psr-7-is-not-immutable.html

Anthony Ferrara:
All About Middleware
May 23, 2016 @ 11:06:10

Anthony Ferrara has written up a post for his site sharing more information about middleware and the PSR-7 proposal that's being discussed to help standardize interfaces with this popular form of application processing.

Last week, a proposal to standardize middleware for PSR-7 was introduced to the PHP-FIG. The general concept of middleware is not a new one, and has been in use in the PHP world for many years. Several people have raised significant concerns with the proposal, which have gone completely unheeded by the author. Let me go through the most major of these concerns, as well as show what a better proposal might look like.

He starts off with a brief look at the current proposal - the interface it defines and an example of a real world usage of it to check some attributes on the request/response. He gives a few more examples before getting into what he sees as the fundamental problem with the interface: that it passes in a response instance rather than creating its own ("what does $response mean inside the middleware?"). He's mostly talking about context and not knowing from one middleware to the next what kind of changes may have been made to the response. He also includes some of the arguments on the "for" side of including the parameter and an interesting list of middleware that does this modification prior to the next() call, making it difficult to determine the actual state.

He ends the post with a few other issue he has with the proposal including the use of the __invoke method name, a restriction on typing and the next method being callable. He makes a few suggestions of modifications to the proposal that he thinks could help make it better, correcting these issues.

tagged: middleware psr7 proposal opinion example problem

Link: http://blog.ircmaxell.com/2016/05/all-about-middleware.html

That Podcast:
Episode 31: Middlewares!
May 20, 2016 @ 10:20:45

In the latest episode of That Podcast, hosts and PHP community members Dave Marshall and Beau Simensen talk about middleware and topics from some previous episodes.

Beau and Dave recap Episode 20 from last year, discussing the PHP FIG PSR-7 middlewares proposal.

Other topics mentioned in this episode include:

You can listen to this latest episode either through the in-page audio player or by downloading the mp3 directly.

tagged: thatpodcast ep31 middleware beausimensen davemarshall

Link: https://thatpodcast.io/episodes/episode-31-middlewares

Rob Allen:
Filtering the PSR-7 body in middleware
May 16, 2016 @ 09:25:30

Rob Allen has a post to his site showing how you can filter the body content of your response in a PSR-7 compatible system via some simple middleware.

Sometimes, there's a requirement to alter the data in the Response's body after it has been created by your controller action. For example, we may want to ensure that our brand name is consistently capitalised. One way to do this is to create middleware that [uses str_ireplace to replace a string]. That's great, but what happens if the new string is shorter than the old one? For instance, suppose I want to replace all uses of "nineteen feet" with "19FT".

In his example, replacing that part of the content would result in an odd string because of how they'd be replaced in the stream. He shows how to use the in-memory handling of PHP's fopen to create a new content instance to push back into the response and back out to the waiting application.

tagged: psr7 middleware filter content strireplace stream fopen tutorial

Link: https://akrabat.com/filtering-the-psr-7-body-in-middleware/

Zend Framework Bites:
Episode 1 (Zend Expressive & Middleware)
Mar 30, 2016 @ 11:51:40

There's a new podcast to add to the mix that's posted its first episode: Zend Framework Bites from Matthew Setter of the Free The Geek podcast.

Quick bites of Zend Framework. Find out what's going on, what's new, and how to use it, in less time than it takes to drink a coffee. [...] Today let’s look at the latest iteration of Zend Framework - Zend Expressive. Specifically, I'm talking about one of the core concepts - middleware.

You can listen to this quick bite of quality Zend Framework content using the in-page audio player or you can subscribe a few different ways including iTunes and RSS.

tagged: zendframeworkbites ep1 zendexpressive middleware briefsfm

Link: https://www.briefs.fm/zend-framework-bites/2