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April 16, 2015

Welcome to this weeks packed edition of PHP Weekly

If you are analysing and parsing code, we bring you an article listing 8 of the best PHP tools for the job.

Also we have Part 2 on What to Expect When You're Expecting PHP7, introducing another six big features of the latest version.

This weeks Acquia Podcast has an interview with Beth Tucker Long, PHP developer and advocate at Code Climate.

Plus the Full Stack Radio Podcast team talk to the creator of Laravel, Taylor Otwell.

As we hit the conference season head on there are several to choose from in May, including Ski PHP, LoopConf and SOLIDay.

And finally, the latest Artisan Files interview is with Shawn McCool, who runs the Laracon EU Conference.

Have a fantastic weekend people,

Katie and Ade

SemaphoreCI Continuous Integration and Deployment

A comprehensive collection of tutorials for software developers

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8 Best PHP Tools For Analysing And Parsing Code
Statistics show that 39 per cent of websites and 2.1 million web servers are based on PHP. The language is powerful, and the most popular among web developers. Today we have listed 8 PHP tools for programmers to help them analyse and parse their programming code.

How To Be A Good Open Source Community Member
Open source is one of the most unusual things in the world. Is there any other profession where highly skilled professionals donate their free time to give their work away for free? Here are 3 rules that, when followed, are sure to make you a good open source citizen.

Beyond Responsiveness, the WordPress Mobile Pack Plugin
We love mobile applications because of their rich user interfaces and experiences, but the discussion of whether a comparable experience will ever be possible on the web is a never-ending one. Web publishers struggle to engage their mobile users due to the complex stages of app creation and engagement. WordPress powers 23% of websites in the world and their presence has a tremendous impact on us all. Learn here about the plugin WordPress Mobile Pack by Appticles.

New Try Drupal Program
One of the Drupal Association's primary missions is to grow the adoption of Drupal. We are about to launch a new program on April 15th called Try Drupal. The program will make it easy and fast for evaluators to try Drupal and have a simple, great experience while on

Tutorials and Talks

What to Expect When You're Expecting: PHP 7, Part 2
As you probably already know, PHP 7 is a thing, and it’s coming this year! Which makes this as good a time as any to go over what’s new and improved. In the first part of this series, we looked at the some of the most important inconsistency fixes coming up in PHP 7 as well as two of the biggest new features. In this post, we take a look at another six big features to land in PHP 7 that you’ll want to know about.

Introduction to Humbug: A Mutation Testing Framework for PHP
Humbug is a Mutation Testing framework intended to measure the true effectiveness of test suites, and provide sufficient information to allow for their improvement. Padraic Brady introduces us to it here.

Finding Bottlenecks in Your PHP Code
Frequently one finds that some piece of webpage code is slowing down pageload time. Although there are many PHP libraries that one can use to benchmark the code to find bottlenecks, most of the time a quick solution is usually enough. This post is a very simple PHP function that logs time at pre specified locations (we will call it markers) in your code.

Team Communication Starts with HipChat
HipChat combines every communication method you’d ever need - IM, group chat, screen sharing, file sharing, link sharing, video and voice calling into a single solution. Working remotely, working across time zones, and working with the person right next to you becomes infinitely simpler and more efficient. Find out more.

Xdebug 2.3: Shared Secret to Enable Tracing or Profiling
This is the sixth article in a series about new features in Xdebug 2.3, which was first released on February 22nd. Xdebug's profiling and trace file capabilities can both be triggered by a cookie, GET or POST variable, as long as you have enabled xdebug.profiler_enable_trigger and/or xdebug.trace_enable_trigger. With these triggers enabled, basically anybody could initiate a profile run, or trace file, by simply sending the XDEBUG_PROFILE or XDEBUG_TRACE cookies with an HTTP request.

Integrate Elasticsearch with Silex
In the previous article I started exploring the integration between Drupal 7 and the Elasticsearch engine. The goal was to see how we can combine these open source technologies to achieve a high performance application that uses the best of both worlds.

How to fix Heartbleed Vulnerability on LAMP Server (Apache PHP) CVE-2014-0160
OpenSSL, which is used by several million websites, was found to be vulnerable to the heartbleed vulnerability. Thankfully it is quick and easy to fix following these instructions.

Creating a PHP Nexmo API Client using Guzzle Web Service Client – Part 1
Nexmo provides APIs that allow your code to send/receive SMS messages, make/receive phone calls, gain insights into a phone number, and provide user verification services. This series of posts explains how to develop a robust yet elegant API client for the Nexmo API.

Deploying PHP Applications with Rocketeer and Docker
Rocketeer is a tool for PHP application deployment. Learn how to deploy a Laravel web app to a Docker container, which can easily be moved to any server.

Set up Automatic Virtual Hosts with Nginx and Apache
When starting new applications, a developer often needs to set up a new virtual host. This includes setting up new configuration files for Apache or new Nginx site entries. In this tutorial, we’ll set up Nginx and Apache to automatically look inside certain folders when it detects a given URL format.

Custom Back - End Configuration in Magento
In this tutorial, I'm going to demonstrate custom module configuration in the back-end of Magento. It's always useful to provide a set of configurable options of the module in the back-end, which allows administrators to configure module specific settings easily. We'll walk through the process of setting up the module configuration by creating a custom module in Magento.

Overview of the Silex Micro-Framework
Sometimes you don't need a full-stack framework. You might be working on a simple restful service that doesn't require controllers, models and views. You could be prototyping a new concept, or maybe building a custom application framework specific to your (or your company's) needs. In all of these cases, you may want to consider using a micro-framework. Silex has a large community and therefore a nice support ecosystem.

4 useful tutorials
Although Semaphore are a sponsor of ours I did notice on their site that they have four interesting tutorials, as well as a link to subscribe when new ones are added. Worth a look
News and Announcements

Ski PHP Conference - May 7-9th 2015, Utah
We've arranged for Ski PHP 2015 to join the OpenWest 2015 Conference. This will allow us to reduce the cost per attendee to just $50 (excluding tutorials), and provide even more value! In addition to the PHP tracks, there will be tracks for Javascript, Data, UI/UX, Security, and more. We anticipate having 3 PHP tracks over 3 days (May 7-9), with the majority of the speakers being non-local.

PHP Unconference Europe: 9-10th May 2015, Majorca
The third PHP Unconference has been announced for this May, in Majorca. The mission of PHP Unconference Europe is to bring together an international group, who have detailed knowledge of PHP and related web technologies. Tickets are on sale now.

SOLIDay by PHP Serbia - May 30th 2015, Belgrade
A day of presentations by world-famous PHP experts and professionals, on topics such as OOP principles, design patterns, software architecture, frameworks and similar. Whether you are a novice, intermediate or advanced developer, join us on this conference and expand, improve or simply refresh your knowledge of this important topic. Early bird tickets still available until tomorrow.

OpenWest Conference - May 6-9th 2015, Utah
Utah Open Source Foundation, a collaboration of volunteers from local user groups, held its first conference in 2006 to support and promote open-source software. It is the largest regional tech conference devoted to all things OPEN: Hardware, Standards, Source and Data. 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.


Three Devs and a Maybe Podcast: 'Phaser' Hart is Back, 15 Clubs is Too Many and the Mann Maths Challenge...
Hey folks, Edd, Lew and Fraser are back this evening for a good ol' web/anything else catchup. We begin with our usual catch up, and Lew discusses his CMS migration to Laravel and also the discussion to make it more API based. Edd then talks about some new caching mechanisms he has been using recently, and Fraser rounds off by discussing the difficulties with making a gaming app and how tough it is working with the infinite platforms available. We also announce some exciting news regarding a live show coming up this Autumn! Following that, we discuss the difficult CMS 'problem' and our own experiences with this before Edd finally rounds off with a mathematical dilemma. If this doesn't whet your appetite, nothing will. Enjoy :-)

Voices of the ElePHPant - Interview with Ben Edmunds
This week Cal Evans talks to Ben Edmunds, co-host of the PHP Town Hall podcast series.

Full Stack Radio Podcast Episode 14: Taylor Otwell - Building Envoyer, Laravel 5.1 and Learning to Program
In this episode, Adam talks to Taylor Otwell, creator of Laravel. Taylor gives an in-depth behind-the-scenes look at how Envoyer is architected, and shares some new tips and tricks he's been using to keep his code simple. They also talk about the decisions behind upcoming changes in Laravel 5.1, how Taylor learned to program, and how he almost became the manager of a retirement home.

MageTalk Magento Podcast #30 - TDD with Vinai Kopp
Phillip and Vinai talk about the journey to TDD and how to test effectively in Magento.

Acquia Podcast - PHP: The Entire World is Your Development Team - Beth Tucker Long
Beth Tucker Long, PHP Developer and Advocate at Code Climate, and I got in front of my cameras at the 2014 PHP World conference and got to talk about her history and priorities in development, PHP, and open source; her welcome into the PHP community, the culture of sharing and teaching in PHP, her work and the mission of Code Climate ... including how she got hired as a Perl programmer right out of college and was handed a PHP codebase to fix. "So I had to learn PHP really, really fast." When she had to ask some questions the weekend she learned PHP, the welcome the PHP community gave her convinced her to stay and inspires her to this day to give others just as warm a welcome to the project.

Reading and Viewing

Laravel News - The Artisan File Interview
This weeks interview is with Shaun McCool, who runs the Laracon EU conference.

Modern PHP: New Features and Good Practices (by Josh Lockhart, published 1st March 2015)
PHP is experiencing a renaissance, though it may be difficult to tell with all of the outdated PHP tutorials online. With this practical guide, you’ll learn how PHP has become a full-featured, mature language with object-orientation, namespaces, and a growing collection of reusable component libraries.

Linux, Apache, MySQL, PHP Performance End to End (by Colin McKinnon, published 2nd March 2015)
A guide to delivering great page speed while reducing server load and increasing capacity. The book covers the entire journey of data, from your server's disk to the mind of the end-user explaining the critical bottlenecks along the way, and providing practical solutions to performance problems. 

Creating Development Environments with Vagrant - Second Edition (by Michael Peacock, published 12th March 2015)
Get your projects up and running quickly and effortlessly by simulating complicated environments, that can be easily shared with colleagues.


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Interesting Projects, Tools and Libraries

Analogue is a flexible, easy-to-use Data Mapper ORM for PHP. It provides a quick and intuitive way to query and persist custom domain objects into a SQL Database.

A workbench for developing Composer packages.

A PHP library to work with big integers.

The PHP Security Advisories Database references known security vulnerabilities in various PHP projects and libraries.

Cachearium is a PHP Cache system. Cache in your PHP applications. Fast, simple and with easy invalidation.

PHPoole-library is a static website generator built on PHP.

A not-invented-here PHP library for array fixtures.

Quark is a PHP SaaS framework, designed for using in complex projects.

KLogger is an easy-to-use PSR-3 compliant logging class for PHP. 

This is a small PHP class that makes it easy to validate forms in your project, especially larger forms.

Custom PHP portfolio package for the Laravel 5 framework.

A PHP class to refine data into a set format, this project aims to add a layer of abstraction between your backend data store and the front end code.

Molengo, a PHP micro framework.

Lite version of packagist, used for PHP extensions via Pickle or as a simple index for PHP extensions.

Latte is a template engine for PHP which eases your work and ensures the output is protected against vulnerabilities, such as XSS.

Lingua is an open-source internationalisation toolkit for PHP.

Propel2 is an open-source Object-Relational Mapping (ORM) for PHP 5.4.
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