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February 19, 2015

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Welcome to the latest edition of your favourite PHP newsletter.

With the release of Laravel 5 just around the corner, the team is giving away a Learning Bundle to get you started. Register now in time for the competition draw on February 24th.

The 2nd part of the series on how to Create a License Controlled Plugin and Theme Update System is out now, this week concentrating on The Licence Manager API.

Also this week, the March editions of Nomad PHP, both US and EU presentations, are booked in for March 19th. Register now for talks on Virtualisation and Composer.

Plus, on the subject of Laravel again, the latest edition from the Changelog Podcast team brings us an in-depth chat with Taylor Otwell, creator of the Laravel PHP framework.

And finally, the WordPress developer conference LoopConf has been announced, taking place in Las Vegas in May. Tickets for this three day event are available now.

Have a great weekend PHP fans,

Katie and Ade

We need your clicks :)

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Giveaway - Laravel Learning Bundle
It’s a great time to be learning Laravel – with the release of L5 just around the corner, bringing with it a number of improvements and awesome new features! To help kick start your Laravel learning, the team is giving away a learning bundle. Log in and enter your details for the big draw on February 24th.

Drupal Content Strategy Update: What Are We Up To?
Back in December, as part of our ongoing efforts to improve, we kicked off a content strategy project with Forum One. Drupal Association engineering and marketing/communication staff partnered with the Content Working Group and met for a two-day workshop to help get the project team from Forum One (content strategists and user experience designers) up to speed on and the ecosystem of sites and services that our community uses to build and use Drupal. Over the past month, we have pulled together many detailed documents to help guide our work. While we are only about halfway through this project, we wanted to share a bit of the work-in-progress that will influence’s content strategy in the coming months.

Meteor Slides – Simple Slider Plugin
On the Web Development Blog this week, a search for a simple slider plugin led to Meteor Slides. This post is a review of this WordPress plugin.

What's New in Laravel 5
The PHP community has recently been blessed with a new release of one of its most loved frameworks, Laravel. Version 5.0.1 is a major release, so not only are there some great new features available, but the architectural foundations of the framework have also been altered to some extent. So, without any further ado, I am going to dive right into the framework and show you all the good things the latest release has to offer.

PHP Changes IBM i Shops, And They Change The PHP Community
What has PHP done to buck the trend in IBM midrange shops to resist change? Fear of disrupting traditional business policies and procedures is not unusual, and it's not unique to the IBM i community. Change is scary, but it can also be exciting. PHP has brought about a pretty fair share of change. And in the process, PHP has changed. The IBM i PHP community has changed, too.

Tutorials and Talks

Discover Graph Databases with Neo4j and PHP
In this post, we’ll be learning about Neo4j, the leading graph database, and ways to use it with PHP. In a followup post, we’ll be building a proper graph application powered by Silex.

Create a License Controlled Plugin and Theme Update System - Part 2: The License Manager API
This is the 2nd tutorial in a three-part series about building a license controlled WordPress plugin and theme update system. In the first part of the series, we created a WordPress plugin for storing and handling software licenses. In part three, we will make a WordPress theme and plugin used with a license manager server, to check for updates and download them. In this tutorial, we will build the interface between the two: an API with two actions that can be called from an external site to get information about a product and its license, and to download the product.

Building Your Startup With PHP: Geolocation and Google Places
This is part three of the Building Your Startup With PHP series on Tuts+. In this series, I'm guiding you through launching a startup from concept to reality using my Meeting Planner app as a real life example. Every step along the way, we'll release the Meeting Planner code as open source examples you can learn from. In this part, we're going to build some of the underlying infrastructure for the concept of Places where people can schedule meetings.

Get the Top Seller items from Amazon using AWS
In a previous post we saw how to access the Amazon Product Advertising API. In this post we will see how to add a function to get the ‘Top Sellers’ list for a particular category.

How to Store Temporary Cached Data with WordPress Transients
Transients are such a powerful part of WordPress, yet are overlooked and under utilised. Using the transients API, you can store values in a standardised way, giving them an expiration time. This frees up space in the database and can lead to significant load time improvements. In this article, I’ll show you everything you need to know to use transients, and a few examples to show you just how powerful they can be.

Laravel Elixir and Using it With Laravel 4
Laravel Elixir provides a clean, fluent API for defining basic Gulp tasks for your Laravel application. Elixir supports several common CSS and JavaScript pre-processors, and even testing tools.

Routing To a Controller with Slim
In a couple of projects that Rob Allen has written using Slim Framework, he's found it beneficial to organise code into controllers with injected dependencies, as that's how he is used to working with ZF2. To make this easier, he has written an extension to the main Slim class and packaged it into rka-slim-controller, which will dynamically instantiate controllers for you for each route.

Separating Models and Logic for Storing and Loading
This article looks at how storing data and retrieving data are different, and how you should/could model this. Since we need different information while storing and retrieving information, it makes sense to model those actions in different ways.
News and Announcements

Joomla! 3.4 Beta 3 Released
The Joomla! Project is pleased to announce the availability of Joomla! 3.4 Beta 3. Community members are asked to download and install the package in order to provide quality assurance for the forthcoming 3.4 release.

PHP Australia Conference: 12-13th March 2015, Sydney
PHP Australia is the country's first ever PHP conference, aimed at proficient developers, new developers and people who care about developers. Among the amazing international and local speakers sharing their knowledge at this event is none other than Rasmus Lerdorf. With less than one month to go, there are still a few tickets available, so register now.

Lone Star PHP Conference - April 16-18th 2015, Dallas
Welcome back to Lone Star PHP for another great year! We're in our fifth year and we're making things better all the time. This year's event will provide all of the great PHP speakers and content you've come to expect from Lone Star PHP. Also this year we are introducing the Training Day, which will provide a more hands-on experience for all that attend. There'll be plenty of time to spend with the local PHP community too through after-parties and other events. Tickets are available now.

LoopConf - May 6-8th 2015, Las Vegas
LoopConf is the WordPress developer conference. LoopConf came about as we heard technically-minded folks talk about wanting to get together and dive deep into advanced engineering and development topics. We've assembled an amazing group of speakers to get this inaugural event started off on the right foot, and we're excited to share our excitement and passion for WordPress with all of you in an exciting three-day event. Discounted tickets are available now.

Nomad PHP US - March 19th 2015 20:00 CDT
Virtualization for Developers, presented by John Coggeshall. The rise of virtualization has transformed the server business, but other than that it seems like the developer world has largely been left behind. Regardless of if you are working on one project, or have 20 clients, every developer should know how to use virtualization to create seamless and easy to manage development environments. In this talk we will take a practical approach to using a combination of Puppet, Vagrant and VirtualBox to create entire development environments in a matter of moments – and even better re-use that template for any project you have in the future in a version-controlled and easily managed manner. Bringing on a new developer for your project? We’ll show you how they can get a fully-fledged development environment from zero to working in under 10 minutes.

Nomad PHP EU - March 19th 2015 20:00 CET
Composer the Right Way, presented by Rafael Dohms. Composer has triggered a renaissance in the PHP community, it has changed the way we deal with other people’s code and it has changed the way we share our code. We are all slowly moving to using Composer, from WordPress to Joomla and Drupal and frameworks in between. But many of us mistreat Composer, follow outdated practices or simply lack a few tricks. In this session I’ll get you the low down on how to use Composer the right way.

Reading and Viewing

PHP and JavaScript Innovation Award Report February 2015 Edition - 2014 Year Winners and November 2014 Nominees
This is the February edition of the Innovation Award podcast hangout, recorded by Manuel Lemos and Ernani Joppert, to comment about the Winners of the Innovation Award Year Edition of 2014. In the recording they show the nice trophies and elePHPant plush toys that all winners will receive. They also commented on the outstanding features of all the past month nominees' and winners' PHP and JavaScript packages, and the prizes that the authors earned, starting with the nominees from the month of November 2014.

The Loosely Coupled Podcast: Episode 19 - How We Work
In this episode Jeff and Matt explore how they go about organising their work life and personal lives. They cover the idea of how the process evolves depending on your environment and even your personal inclinations. In 2011, Jeff wrote a blog post about the tools he used back then and realised that it has changed a little, but for the most part works for him. They cover some pitfalls of processes that require tickets/stories to be broken down into parts where developers cannot understand what they’re doing or why, and how they’ve learned over time to get to that information. They also talk about learning how to be professionals and defend against situations that would impact your work, or your code, in negative ways. Finally, they touch on Matt’s work scheduling experiment which is inspired by the Makers Schedule versus the Managers Schedule, and how it has helped him be more productive.

MageTalk Magento Podcast #23
Mah-Hay En-Gah-Hay.

PHP Town Hall #36: PSR-7 and the World of Tomorrow
Two awesome guests join this week, from two different framework projects, who have both been very vocal about their interest in PSR-7: HTTP Message. These two chaps are Hari K T and Matthew Weier O’Phinney. Now, PSR chats can be a little boring when they are about autoloading or tabs v bloody spaces, but this PSR could have some really big impacts on the way you write PHP over the next few years. We talk a bunch about Aura and Zend and their plans around middlewares, what motivated Matthew to get involved with taking over PSR-7, what middlewares mean for PHP in general, and some of the concerns that have been fixed in recent iterations of the PSR like mutability, streams, etc.

Voices of the ElePHPant - Interview with Ryan Weaver
This week Cal Evans interviews Symfony2 developer and trainer at KNP Labs, Ryan Weaver.

Laravel IO Podcast: Episode 22 - Laravel 5/Laracon Announcements Live Q&A
Laravel 5 was released and Laracon conferences were just announced! The perfect opportunity for another live question and answer podcast!

Three Devs and a Maybe Podcast: Life as a Software Developer with Keyvan Akbary
This week we are very lucky to have Edd's work colleague and good friend Keyvan Akbary on the show. We start off discussing how Google Maps lied to him on his train journey down from London to the 'Garden of England' Kent. This moves us on to talk about the exciting new greenfield project he is currently working on - following a DDD approach, comprehensive test suite and TDD. After this we back track a few steps and chat about how he got into computing and subsequently programming - through a high school web-page and friendly competition with his brother. Following this we delve into his University experience and how he felt happier in a work setting, which can be seen by the great experience he has been able to gain in such a short space of time. Finally, we discuss his experiences with his own start-up, the current book he is helping write and interesting technologies that currently appeal to him.

The Changelog Podcast #142 - Laravel PHP Framework with Taylor Otwell
This week we’re joined by Taylor Otwell, the creator and maker of the Laravel PHP framework. He joins us for a deep dive into Laravel, discussing why he doesn’t release without good documentation, building apps to test your own framework, writing an API for Lavarel Forge, and more.


To post a job advert please contact [email protected]

Fuzzy Matching Project Work
We are looking for someone to help on a specific project which will involve matching products on one website with products on another website. Someone with skills and demonstrable experience of matching algorithms is a necessity. If you can’t prove that you can do this kind of work please do not contact us. For the right person there is ongoing exciting work. In the first instance please contact us at [email protected] with “Fuzzy matching project” as the subject and we will then create a shortlist, providing the shortlist with information about our company.

Interesting Projects, Tools and Libraries

BDD test framework for PHP, inspired by Jasmine and RSpec. Features a familiar syntax, and a watch command to automatically re-run specs during development.

A PHP string manipulation library with multibyte support. Offers both OO method chaining and a procedural-style static wrapper. Tested and compatible with PHP 5.3+ and HHVM.

Laravel 4-5 package that simplifies creating, managing and retrieving trees in database.

Turn delimited data into tags. There are multiple extensions for bringing tagging functionality into Yii but Tagging aims to be the simplest.

RDev is a PHP web application framework that simplifies the difficult parts of creating and maintaining a secure, scalable website.

SimpleHal is an easy to use PHP library for consuming Hal APIs.

Library that extends php-webdriver using Querypath and a standard format for parsing web pages.

Filelib is a file library component for PHP, providing a virtual filesystem for your web application's files. 

Simresults is an open-source, object-oriented library built using PHP5.

Simple debugging utility for PHP to print out messages to stdout or the browser's JavaScript console, if supported.

Syrup is a framework for rapid development of Keboola Connection components (i.e. extractors). It is based on Symfony2 framework.

Cement is a lightweight, fast and very extensible framework for PHP.

This package aims to provide an easy and fluent interface to construct and execute commands for various desktop notification programs.

DOM is native HTML parsing library for PHP. Supports XPath syntax.

New generation PHP framework.

PHP library to get information from any web page. Compatible with any web service and has adapters to some sites.
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