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Reddit.com:
What changes would you like to see in PHP 7?
January 20, 2015 @ 12:51:08

In the /r/php subreddit on Reddit.com a question was posed to the community: What changes would you like to see in PHP 7?. So far there's 80+ answers with a wide variety of responses.

As well as massive performance improvements, PHP 7's change / feature list is already looking great. You can find most of the features that have been accepted or are under discussion on the PHP Dev Wiki: RFCs section. But what changes would make a difference to you? What would you really like to see make it in (already suggested or a new suggestion)?

Here's just a few of the suggestions made by fellow Reddit users:

  • fixing inconsistencies in naming
  • sandboxed eval
  • a complete rework of the standard library
  • the introduction of generics
  • adding enum functionality
  • type aliasing
  • stack traces for fatal errors

Check out the full post for more ideas and feedback from other members of the community too. It's an interesting list of suggestions, some that are even already in the works.

0 comments voice your opinion now!
php7 changes reddit opinion community language feature improvement

Link: http://www.reddit.com/r/PHP/comments/2sx5x3/what_changes_would_you_like_to_see_in_php_7/

SitePoint PHP Blog:
The PHP 7 Revolution Return Types and Removed Artifacts
January 19, 2015 @ 13:12:14

On the SitePoint PHP blog today Bruno Skvorc has written about the PHP 7 revolution and some of the changes coming with this next major version of the language (including return types and the removal of some functionality).

With the planned date for PHP 7's release rapidly approaching, the internals group is hard at work trying to fix our beloved language as much as possible by both removing artifacts and adding some long desired features. There are many RFCs we could study and discuss, but in this post, I'd like to focus on three that grabbed my attention.

He touches on a few topics in the post including:

  • the debate that came up about PHP 5.7 versus PHP 7
  • The addition of return types from functions/methods
  • The removal of PHP4 style constructors
  • Changes to the extension API

Obviously, since PHP7 is no where near release status, all or some of these things could be subject to change. For example, the removal of PHP4 constructors is still being hotly contested on the php.internals mailing list at the time of this post.

0 comments voice your opinion now!
php7 revolution returntype remove php4 constructor extension api

Link: http://www.sitepoint.com/php-7-revolution-return-types-removed-artifacts/

Nikita Popov:
PHP's new hashtable implementation
December 26, 2014 @ 10:20:10

In his latest post Nikita Popov gives a detailed look at PHP's new hashtable implementation and what kinds of improvements it offers over the previous methods. The "hashtable" handling is how the language references array values created during the execution of a script.

About three years ago I wrote an article analyzing the memory usage of arrays in PHP 5. As part of the work on the upcoming PHP 7, large parts of the Zend Engine have been rewritten with a focus on smaller data structures requiring fewer allocations. In this article I will provide an overview of the new hashtable implementation and show why it is more efficient than the previous implementation.

He starts with an introduction to the concept of hashtables, describing them as "ordered dictionaries" of key/value pairs that (internally) reference values in an array. He looks at the old method PHP used to make these links and how the new version, with the help of zval handling, is different. He talks about how it handles the order of elements, does lookups and the introduction of "packed" and "empty" hashtables. He ends the post with a look at this new implementation's memory utilization and what kind of performance gains we can expect with its introduction in PHP7.

0 comments voice your opinion now!
hashtable array implementation php7 performance memory lookup

Link: http://nikic.github.io/2014/12/22/PHPs-new-hashtable-implementation.html

Halls of Valhalla:
From PHP 5 to 7
September 22, 2014 @ 10:56:32

On the "Halls of Valhalla" site there's a new post the tries to explain the jump from PHP5 to PHP7 and what all that means for the language (and community around it).

Since around 2005 we've heard talk about PHP 6 development. There have even been books sold about it. But where is it? As of July of this year it was decided that there won't be one and that PHP will skip directly to version 7. Why is it skipping to the next major version, and what ever happened with PHP 6? And if we're already jumping to PHP 7, what kinds of features will it have?

They start with a "brief history" of PHP since its inception back in the mid 1990s and follow its evolution at a high level through the years. Then comes the topic of PHP6 and the work that was already being put towards it and integrated Unicode support. It talks about some of the difficulties of this conversion and the delays that ended up happening. Instead, it was decided that things would stay in the PHP 5.x series and 5.3, 5.4 and 5.5 have been created since. The jump to PHP7 came from this vote with several different reasons influencing the decision.

The post finishes with a look at some of the new things that will be coming in PHP7 including major performance improvements, abstract syntax tree functionality and asynchronous programming, allowing for the execution of parallel tasks in the same request.

0 comments voice your opinion now!
php5 php6 php7 community unicode language history features

Link: http://halls-of-valhalla.org/beta/news/from-php-5-to-7,146/

Three Devs & A Maybe Podcast:
News on PHP 7, and how PHP internally works with Joe Watkins
August 28, 2014 @ 09:13:21

The Three Devs & A Maybe podcast has released their latest episode today - Episode #40, News on PHP 7, and how PHP internally works with special guest Joe Watkins. In it the guys talk about the upcoming (major) version of PHP and some of the work Joe's been doing related to Unicode and other parts of the language.

In this weeks show we are very lucky to have Joe Watkins on again to discuss all things PHP 7. Starting off with the decisions behind calling the next release 7, we delve into the reasons for 6 being abandoned. Moving on from this we look into what PHP 7 currently has scheduled to offer, including the PHPNG patch, an AST and maybe Joe's own Unicode String class. We then discuss how a PHP script is internally lexed, parsed/compiled and cached, - including how a JIT would speed up certain use-cases. Finally we touch upon the much requested String type hinting and how a solution similar to Java's could be implemented with minimal hassle.

Other topics mentioned in this episode include: the last PHP 5.3 release ever, PHPNG and upgrading extensions from PHP5 to PHPNG. You can listen to this latest episode either through the downloading the mp3. If you enjoy the episode, consider http://threedevsandamaybe.com/podcast.xml">subscribing to their feed and get the latest shows as they're released.

0 comments voice your opinion now!
threedevsandamaybe podcast ep40 joewatkins internals php7 interview

Link: http://threedevsandamaybe.com/posts/news-on-php-7-and-how-php-internally-works-with-joe-watkins/

PHPClasses.org:
PHP 7 Features and Release Date
August 04, 2014 @ 12:54:58

As Manuel Lemos mentions in his most recent blog post the official name for the next major release of the PHP language has been decided...and no, it's not PHP 6. Based on the results of this vote, the next major version will start off the PHP 7 series.

Manuel talks about some of the reasoning behind skipping over the PHP 6 naming and how it's possible that the PHPNG branch could become the base for PHP 7. Some of the improvements in this release could include:

  • Huge Performance Improvements
  • JIT (Just In Time) Engine
  • AST: Abstract Syntax Tree

As it stands now, there's no predicted release date for PHP 7, but guesses put it between one to three years out, depending on the functionality it plans to include.

0 comments voice your opinion now!
php6 php7 language update major version release

Link: http://www.phpclasses.org/blog/post/242-PHP-7-Features-and-Release-Date.html

PHP Town Hall:
Episode 29 Dont Mention PHP 6 v PHP 7
July 31, 2014 @ 11:04:17

The PHP Town Hall podcast has released their latest episode, hosted by Phil Sturgeon and Ben Edmunds - Episode #29: Don't Mention PHP 6 v PHP 7. In this episode they're joined by guests Paul Jones and Daniel Lowrey.

Paul has recently been talking a lot about "Action Domain Responder" which is billed as a more representative replacement of the often mis-used "Model View Controller" architecture. Luckily he does a good job of ELI5 so we don't get too lost, and we talk a bit about how ADR helps with putting content negotiation in a logical place. Daniel then goes on to talk about a few awesome topics, including some of the OpenSSL changes in 5.6, and a HTTP server he is working on built entirely from PHP. It's async, non-blocking and web-scale.

They also talk about HTTP2, the Aura framework and the PSR-7 HTTP messaging proposal. You can listen to this latest episode either through the in-page audio player, by downloading the mp3 or you can watch the live recording from the Google+ session.

0 comments voice your opinion now!
phptownhall podcast ep29 php6 php7 pauljones daniellowery

Link: http://phptownhall.com//blog/2014/07/30/episode-29-dont-mention-php-6-v-php-7/

Phil Sturgeon:
The Neverending Muppet Debate of PHP 6 v PHP 7
July 24, 2014 @ 10:18:14

Phil Sturgeon has posted about something he calls the "neverending muppet debate of PHP 6 versus PHP 7. As the PHP language moves forward, the PHP 5.x series is coming to a close. The discussion as started up whether to name it "PHP 6" or "PHP 7" and both sides have their proponents.

There are a few major, important conversations happening in the PHP internals mailing list as we speak: The Facebook lot heading up a specification based off of PHP 5.6 Should phpng be moved into master to be the base of the next major PHP version How can we best go about scalar typehinting? There is also another conversation: Should it be PHP 6 or PHP 7 Wait... what?

He goes on to provide a little context, pointing out that back in 2010 PHP 6 was being slated for release as the next major version of the language (this was around the PHP 5.2 days). Unfortunately, it stalled out and some of what was planned went into PHP 5.3. This didn't stop publishers from releasing books and articles about "PHP 6" though. It's already being put up for a vote with "PHP 7" pulling ahead. Phil also includes more context around the discussions, sharing the main points of each side and snippets from the RFC and mailing list thread currently ongoing.

0 comments voice your opinion now!
debate php6 php7 naming internals rfc version

Link: http://philsturgeon.uk/blog/2014/07/neverending-muppet-debate-of-php-6-v-php-7


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