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php[architect] — January 2014

Get this month’s code package: January 2014 Code package

Develop Yourself

It’s the end of another year and the beginning of a new one. A time to look back at what you have done and make crazy promises about what you will do during this next year. Admit it, you are doing it already, looking at your list from 2013 and trying to figure out if you did alright or not. Well, no use crying over spilt milk; let’s look ahead. Building a great career is not something that happens overnight or something that happens on its own. It is up to you to drive your career and get it going in the direction you want. So tell me, do you want to be a better developer? –by Rafael Dohms

OCD: Obsessive Comment Documentation

We are professional coders writing beautiful code that makes sense to everyone. How could anyone not understand and follow this code? Now, go get something you wrote two years ago. If that doesn’t change your mind, go get some code that someone else wrote two years ago. Even beautiful code becomes tarnished, and with our knowledge and methodology constantly improving, comments are a coder’s best friend. –by John M. Stokes

Console Apps in ZF2

For most developers, PHP is a web language. We use it every day to build our web applications for browsers and mobile devices. Really, that is what the language was designed for. There comes a time in any large application’s life when things begin to change. Processes become too large to fit comfortably in a single request or they need to be taken care of at specific times. Maybe the application is not even suited for the web. At those times, we look at using PHP as something other than a server-side scripting language. Despite being made for the web, it works well other places too. Welcome to the command line. –by Chris Tankersley

Introduction to Neo4j for PHP

Neo4j is a graph database. As a database, therefore, it will store data and allow querying the stored data to read it or to extract new and interesting pieces of information. Neo4j stores data in a ‘graph’ structure. It is closely related to the ‘graph’ concept in math. –by Damien Seguy

Everything Your Teacher Taught You About OOP is Wrong

Surprise! There’s no one canonical way to approach object-oriented programming (OOP). Within classic OOP models, though, there are different ways of thinking about what it means to be an object. Chances are, you were taught the wrong one. –by Larry Garfield

The Confident Coder: Commenting is More Than Just Giving Your Opinion

In an earlier column, I discussed the advantage of using longer and more verbose variable and method names. When you program using this more descriptive style, the code is easier to understand and more maintainable. However, a short and concise method with a revealing name may not always be sufficient when it comes to complex processes. To fill this gap, PHP has comments. –by Aaron Saray

Education Station: Easily Build Regular Expressions in PHP

Regular expressions are something which I honestly love. Now that may sound sadistic, or masochistic, but it’s true – partly because of the intellectual challenge, partly because of the compactness of code which results. –by Matt Setter

Laravel Tips: Adding Eloquent ORM to an Existing Data Model

Adding Laravel’s Eloquent ORM to an existing data model requires slightly more configuration due to the absence of convention. Learn what you need to be aware of to get everything working. –by Dirk Merkel

finally{}: Embracing our Roots

You know, PHP is a very unique language in one specific way. It has truly evolved as an open source project in and of itself. It’s a 19-year old project now, and it’s been able to evolve and change itself as changes in programming technology and idioms have changed as well. In my opinion, it’s very unique in this regard. –by Eli White

Editorial: Lies Abound

It’s that time of year when we all lie to ourselves: I’m going to eat better. I’m going to go to the gym. I’m going to <insert thing I should do, but won’t>. This year, take a break from the clichés. –by Beth Tucker Long

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