Larry Garfield

Larry Garfield is an aspiring blacksmith who moonlights as Director of Developer Experience for When not trying to hand-forge his own medieval armory from scratch he tries to teach developers and development managers the skills of yesteryear that the industry has forgotten.

twitter: @crell


Serializing PHP Objects

By Larry Garfield

PHP has many native ways to serialize objects, but not all of them are created equal. PHP 7.4 introduces what is hopefully the “one final way that will work this time.” Even so, the others aren’t going away any time soon.

Published in Under the Scope, September 2020

Never* Use Arrays

By Larry Garfield

Arrays are a core feature of the PHP language, and so easy to use many developers don’t go beyond them. Fixating on arrays as the uber-data structure, while tempting, can rapidly lead to unmaintainable, unreadable code. Let’s look at better options and just how accessible those options are.

Published in New Habits, January 2020

Containers Are a Pile of Lies! Part Two

By Larry Garfield

While the kernel offers all sorts of APIs to manipulate namespaces and processes at a fine-grained level, that is often not especially helpful when trying to build systems at a more coarse-grained level, such as a macro container. As is common practice in programming, therefore, various other tools have sprung up to abstract those low-level APIs into easier to use higher-level APIs.

Published in Long Running PHP, March 2018

Containers Are a Pile of Lies! Part One

By Larry Garfield

Containers are the hot technology these days. They make hosting more flexible and reliable. They make development environments easier to set up. They’re like lightweight VMs. And, based on the marketing they also taste great and are less filling. But, what are they, really?

Published in Know Your Tools, February 2018