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php|architect — October 2011

Get this month’s code package: October 2011 Code package


HTML5 is the new hot “umbrella” buzzword. With new tags, CSS3, JavaScript APIs and animations, who wouldn’t be jumping for joy? This article will guide you through all the new features introduced in HTML5, along with some great tips and tricks. –by Jake Smith

The IBM i From a PHP Programmer’s Perspective

IBM and Zend have pushed hard to prove that PHP on the IBM i is a viable solution, and it is. While they tend to gear most of their marketing toward mainframe developers to switch over to PHP, coming to the IBM i from a PHPers experience is a whole different matter. We know the language, just not this well-aged platform. IBM has done their best to make developers welcome but the environment is still different. I’ll go through some of the common annoyances of having to work on the i, as well as tips to make life easier. This is not an introduction to programming on the i, just tips to make your life easier. –by Chris Tankersley

PHPWomen: 5 Years Later, 5 Lessons Learned

It’s hard to believe that it’s been five years since Ligaya Turmelle and I first had that IRC chat about why there were so few women around in the PHP space. Lig and I both had always been OK with being “one of the guys”, but there are times when a fellow female presence is just, well, reassuring. Being the unicorn in the room gets super old, and we both felt that if we could encourage our female counterparts to come out of the woodwork a bit, we’d all realize that we were not as alone as we felt. –by Elizabeth Naramore

The Marriage of Framework and CMS

The debate between tolerating an off-the-shelf content management system and rolling your own code to build a website seems so old that it’s a wonder it’s not a feature of cave paintings. CMS code bases are known for being byzantine nightmares and a pain to customize, with content editing interfaces that are still embarrassingly clunky and technical. So it’s no surprise that many websites are built either directly on PHP code or MVC frameworks, but the initial euphoria stemming from your code can turn into frustration as customers push on you their expectations for functionality, upgrades, database abstraction, security, mobile, Facebook, Unicode, caching, workflow, etc… you get the point. The natural evolution is therefore the marriage of an MVC framework and a fully developed CMS. Here, we’ll talk about what can be born from their consummation. –by Sigurd Magnusson

Community Corner: On Creating User Groups and Physics

Vacuums suck, literally. So what does that have to do with PHP? –by Rafael Dohms

Bug Zapper: Bending the Rules

Regular readers of this column will know that I stick pretty closely to a predefined process when fixing bugs. I also allow you, the reader, to check if I do so, by providing a process model that I include with the column (see Figure 1). The most important steps of the process are those which require that before starting to test or fix anything, you run the existing unit tests for the component you are working on. This is to assure that after you changed the code, you can be sure that for any failing tests, you are the one to blame. On rare occasions, you will have to change a test simply because it is wrong. We saw an example of this in my previous column. This month, I write about bugs we encountered in a real life project. The pressure of the project only allowed for a quick fix. Of course, I did not commit those changes yet, but they are in my local working copy of Zend Framework already… and it is just so tempting to see if the existing unit tests approve of them… –by Bart McLeod

exit(0): Doors That Open to the Outside

With the right backup strategy, everyone should be unafraid. –by Marco Tabini

Editorial: Refresh

We all need to add a little fun to our day to keep our minds interested in problem solving. –by Elizabeth Tucker Long

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