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php[architect] — August 2016

One of my unstated resolutions for this year has been to automate repetitive tasks as much as possible. There is always more to do than time available, and one way to free up time is to have a computer do it for us. Not only will the computer do them much faster, but they won’t make mistakes if you write them correctly.

Deploying with Ansible

Ansible is a provisioning tool rapidly growing in popularity, mainly due to its simplicity. But it is capable of more than just provisioning! In this article, I will walk you through building a deploy procedure with Ansible, using the deploy_helper module available in Ansible since version 2. Of course, since we are all lazy developers, I will also point you to two existing roles that you can use so you don’t have to write your own. by Ramon de la Fuente

More Than Just an “OK” Dev

In today’s web development market there are tons of job openings with excellent salaries and perks like cars, work-from-home arrangements, unlimited holidays, opportunities to become certified, and so on. But how long until the bubble bursts? A growing number of people are being raised to become programmers, and some have been programming since before they could even talk. Are you ready to compete with the upcoming waves of younger, smarter developers? by Gabriel Somoza

Connecting Your Charts to a MySQL Database

This article will walk you through the step-by-step process of creating charts in PHP. First we will fetch data from a MySQL database through PHP, and then render interactive charts using that data. After making a basic chart, we will also learn about some advanced features like updating data dynamically and exporting a chart as an image. We’ll make use of the FusionCharts charting library, which offers a huge collection of charts and has a dedicated plugin for PHP. by Vikas Lalwani

What’s Your Code Tolerance?

Thanks to feature-rich source code management software like Stash and GitHub, peer code reviewing is no longer the painful task it once was. Collaborative workflows pair with source code management software to aid the implementation of best practices during the peer code reviewing process. Applying the correct amount of tolerance during peer code reviewing is a best practice that can significantly impact the health of your project and sanity of your peers. by Steve Bennett

Education Station: Using Etsy/Phan for Static Analysis

Given that PHP 7 is a major version upgrade, I don’t suggest you just upgrade your PHP binaries, cross your fingers, and hope for the best—not unless you’re super confident your current code is PHP 7-compatible. Instead, I suggest you get a copy of an excellent tool by the engineering team at Etsy and perform some code analysis. It’s called Phan, and in this month’s edition, I’m going to give you an overview. by Matthew Setter

Leveling Up: How We Automate With Slack

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Like it or lump it, Slack has taken over as the corporate and community communication tool of choice. User groups, companies, interest groups, families, and friends use the tool to chat, share information, memes, and gifs, coordinate meetings and more. As a tool for corporate communication, Slack has become irreplaceable for many. And with its easy-to-use APIs, it’s also possible to use Slack to automate common and tedious operations, as we’ll see in this issue. by David Stockton

Community Corner: The Tangled Web We Weave

This month’s column is brought to you by AOL. OK, not really, but it was written by someone who works at AOL, Samantha Quiñones. In spite of the fact that she rolls her eyes at me every time I ask if she’s got any of those cool AOL floppy disks (kids, floppy disks are like DVDs from the Stone Age), I asked her to share some of her thoughts on the PHP community. by Cal Evans

Security Corner: The Hitchhiker’s Guide to Authorization

When it comes to the security of web applications, there’s a lot of things to consider. A good, secure site takes several moving pieces all cooperating in harmony to be effective. There are some pieces, however, that stand out and play a bit more prominent role. The “gateway” of any application is made up of two pieces: the authentication and the authorization. For this article, I’m going to focus on the second of this dynamic duo: authorization. by Chris Cornutt

We are in a Tech Recession

I have never quite written a forward-looking financial article for my column, but now seems as good of time as any to do so. I am putting my flag in the ground and declaring that we are in a recession in the U.S. (if not globally), in at least the technology market. by Eli White

Code Archive – August 2016