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November 5, 2015

Hi PHP fans, and thanks for joining us this week.

With PHP 7 scheduled for this release this month, the eleventh pre-release of the series, PHP 7.0.0 RC 6, is out now, available immediately. PHP 5.6.15 has also been released.

Last week saw the Día de Muertos, or Day of the Dead - a day to remember and celebrate the lives of friends and family who have died. In this weeks edition, Ben Ramsey takes a moment to remember some of the PHP community members who have passed away in recent years.

Also this week we take a look at Flarum, a forums solution under active development, and compare it to other already established forums platforms.

Plus, with the call for papers now closed, Early Bird tickets are on sale for the PHP UK Conference, set in London next February.

And finally, the dev/hell podcast team is joined this week by Gary Hockin of JetBrains.

Have a great weekend everyone,

Katie and Ade

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Running Symfony Applications with PHP-PM
PHP is a shared-nothing platform. This means that each time a request comes to your server your PHP application starts anew. PHP-PM is a way of running PHP in an alternative way, by maintaining a pool of PHP applications waiting for a request to come in.

Find Easy Solutions with These Top CakePHP Based CMS
CakePHP is counted amongst the renowned and most effective open source web application frameworks offering an extensible and comprehensive architecture to develop, maintain and deploy PHP based applications.

Why I’m Joining YouTube Red
There’s been plenty of wailing and gnashing of teeth surrounding YouTube’s announcement of it’s new “Red” membership. And while there are plenty of good points being made, John Morrison will be joining YouTube Red as soon as it’s available, and here's why he thinks you should too.

Benefits Of Setting-up Multi-Regional Stores With Magento Store Switcher
Shopping online is now in the stream and, as technology evolves, the trends and the curves of style and fashion that grip the ecommerce industry evolve too. It simply cannot be disputed that online stores have created a buzz globally, defying boundaries and capturing new cultures. This has become somewhat challenging as products are sold in different countries and regions. This calls for the need for managing online stores with respect to the particular regions the visitor originates from. Here is one product that cannot be doubted in providing the best GeoIP solution to your website.

Simple, Easy, Risk and Change
I've been thinking a lot about change lately, writes Anthony Ferrara. Things finally resonated to me after listening to Uncle Bob Martin on No Capes. He made an amazingly interesting point about change and different methods for minimising the risk over time of change. I want to share some of what I've been thinking about along those lines. What follows is a collection of some of my evolving thoughts relating to change and complexity. Let me know your thoughts in the comments.

LLVM Code Generation in HHVM
One of the most common questions we get about HHVM is why we don’t use LLVM for code generation. The primary reason has always been that while LLVM is great at optimising C, C++, Objective-C, and other similar statically-typed languages, PHP is dynamically typed. The kinds of optimisations that provide huge performance benefits for static languages tend to be less useful in dynamic languages, or at least overshadowed by all the dynamic dispatching that’s done based on runtime types. We knew that there was probably something to be gained from using LLVM as a backend, but there were many larger opportunities to go after first.

Dia de Muertos - Remembering PHP Community Members Who Have Died
Ben Ramsey is fascinated by the Mexican traditions observed on Día de Muertos, or Day of the Dead. It’s a time for celebrating and remembering friends and family who have died. This year, we have lost a few members of the PHP community, and on this Day of the Dead, he takes a moment to remember some of the PHP community members who have died over the past few years.

Tutorials and Talks

Tracking PHP API Accesses using Google Analytics Part 2: Recording API Accesses
In the first part of this article, a solution was presented to retrieve statistics data from Google Analytics API using PHP but this API also allows recording events. This can be useful to record accesses to a PHP API that you are providing in your site. Read this article to learn how to use Google Analytics PHP to track the accesses to a PHP API of your own.

Building Database-free Websites with Statamic CMS
A content management system (CMS) is a package of code around which you build a dynamic website - with components that change, adapt and update automatically, in contrast to a hard-coded, static site. In this article, Gareth Redfern presents a relatively new type of CMS that’s challenging the more established database-driven model.

PHP Design Patterns
Design patterns offer solutions to common application design problems. In object-oriented programming, design patterns are normally targeted at solving the problems associated with object creation and interaction, rather than the large-scale problems faced by the overall software architecture. They provide generalised solutions in the form of boilerplates that can be applied to real-life problems. Usually design patterns are visualised using a class diagram, showing the behaviours and relations between classes.

Changing Author Homepage URL Properly in WordPress
Authors in WordPress have a homepage url like where all their posts are shown. And many of us who think it doesn’t look attractive want to change that url format. The middle part of that url, which says author, is called an author_base and it is possible to change this using some rewrite rules and filters. Let’s get our hands dirty :)

Running LDAP Tests on travis-ci
When fixing bugs in a package, I made it a rule to always set up automatic unit test runs when a commit or a git pull request comes in; travis-ci makes that particularly easy and has nice integration into github. You see the build status directly in the pull requests and get images to embed into your README to show the current build status.

Running Zend Server on Google Cloud Platform
Day 1 at ZendCon in Las Vegas saw some pretty interesting announcements, one of them being the availability of Zend Server on Google’s Cloud Platform. Just in case you want to check it out, this article will help you get started.

Laravel 5.2 - A Look at What’s Coming
Laravel 5.2 development is underway and so far a few nice additions have been announced. Let’s take a look at everything we know that is coming to the release.

First Look at Flarum – Next Generation Forums Made Simple
Flarum is a forums solution that is currently in public beta and is under active development. Today we’re going to take a look at it, get it set up in a Homestead Improved Vagrant virtual machine, and look at the configuration and the features that Flarum offers. Then, we’ll compare it to some other forums platforms to see how it stacks up at a glance.

PHP 7 Nested Anonymous Classes Tutorial
PHP 7 has introduced a new class feature called the Anonymous Class which will allow us to create objects without the need to name them. Anonymous classes can be nested, i.e. defined inside other classes. Read this article to learn how to define and use anonymous classes nested inside other classes.

The Beginners Guide to WooCommerce: Adding a New Order Part 3
Managing and keeping a track of all the orders has now become quite easy with WooCommerce. I have explained in my previous articles how you can not only manage but also create a new order manually. In the previous article I discussed some of the sections which are to be configured in case you are creating the order manually. Today, I will be wrapping up the portion of Orders in WooCommerce by completely adding the manual order. 

New in Symfony 2.8: Guard Authentication Component
The Symfony Security component is divided into two main parts: authentication and authorisation. The authorisation subsystem checks whether the user has permission to access the given resource. This system is related to roles and voters and is both powerful and simple to use. The authentication subsystem checks the user identity through any of the supported methods: username + password, certificates, API tokens, etc. This subsystem is powerful and flexible, but lots of Symfony developers struggle with its complexity.

10 Less-known (but awesome!) Laravel Collections Methods
Take a look one by one at the list of methods to work with Eloquent Collections.
News and Announcements

PHP 5.6.15 is available
The PHP development team announces the immediate availability of PHP 5.6.15. Several bugs have been fixed. All PHP 5.6 users are encouraged to upgrade to this version.

PHP 7.0.0 RC 6 Released
The PHP development team announces the immediate availability of PHP 7.0.0 RC 6. This is the eleventh pre-release of the new PHP 7 major series. All users of PHP are encouraged to test this version carefully, and report any bugs and incompatibilities in the bug tracking system.

WordPress 4.4 Beta 2
WordPress 4.4 Beta 2 is now available for download and testing. This is software still in development, so we don’t recommend that you run it on a production site.

Drupal 8.0.0 will be released on November 19, 2015
Based on our experience with our successful release candidates, we are confident to announce that Drupal 8.0.0 will be released on November 19, 2015! Until then, we will continue publishing Drupal 8 release candidates with the latest fixes.

PHP Benelux Conference - January 29-30th 2016, Antwerp
We’re very pleased to announce the 7th edition of our conference. The PHPBenelux Conference 2016 should be one of the best PHP community conferences, where community members from around the world come together to learn and share information about the latest trends in professional PHP development. Tickets go on sale soon.

PHP UK Conference - 18-19th February 2016, London
With over 700 delegates, speakers, and sponsors, PHP UK conference aims to deliver fantastic up-to-date content about PHP and related web technologies in a comfortable and professional setting. There are countless networking opportunities to engage with international speakers and delegates, which makes the event one you won't want to miss. Early Bird tickets are on sale now.


dev/hell Podcast Episode 67 - Working For The Weekend
Super special guest Gary Hockin of JetBrains, and previously dog wrangler at Roave, joins us for much fun discussion and blame-taking. We babble about Slack vs IRC, the dev evangelism life, software subscription models, and video games. Also we make the say command in OS X utter profane phrases.

Voices of the ElePHPant - Interview with Chase Peeler
This week Cal chats with PHP community member Chase Peeler, recorded live at the Northeast PHP Conference where Chase was a speaker.

Laravel IO Podcast: Episode 37 - I Love The Things You Are Saying
In this episode, the crew discusses front-end tools like Vue, React, and Angular. Matt then discusses scheduled introspection to combat over-joyous Florida climate while Taylor yearns to live in a desert.

Three Devs and a Maybe Podcast - Let's TalkTalk about Security
This week we are very lucky to have Lewis back on the show after his recent move. We discuss what he has been getting up to in his absence and how he is balancing work/life whilst being remote. Following this, we touch upon a reinvigorated passion for software architecture, moving to a framework from bespoke solutions and the middleware pattern. Discussion then turns towards moving from AngularJS to React/Flux and resources Edd has written and found useful whilst learning the subject. Security is the next hot-topic with the recent TalkTalk security breach in question, an interesting pseudo-random number seed issue and SSL/TLS/HTTPS all explained. Finally, we conclude with an update on Mick’s final year project and his work with decision trees.

That Podcast Episode 24: The Last One... With a Friends Themed Title
Because Dave gets frustrated trying to think them up.

Beau and Dave talk about work, automating deployments and ops, running an (R)ELK stack on AWS, Reactiflux getting kicked off Slack, Dave's work being awarded some government funding, Phil Sturgeon, Symfony autowiring and the 3.0 release, Zend Expressive, Adobe Creative Suite on case-sensitive filesystems and You Can't Teach a Kid to Ride a Bike at a Seminar.

Acquia Podcast - How and Why We Use Drupal - A Business Owner's Perspective
jam's Dev Camp is back with Alick Mighall, Managing Director of miggle in Brighton. He and I have a chat about Drupal and running your own business in the podcast interview part of this session. He goes on to do a very interesting presentation about the road to Drupal for himself and his agency, including some of the detours through proprietary and in-house software along the way. If you're wondering what Drupal can do for you and your company, listen to our conversation then watch Alick's presentation.

MageTalk Magento Podcast #68 - The King of The Wiki
Kalen starts doing TDD, can't figure out 20% of 4000 and the guys discuss engineering at scale.

Reading and Viewing

What Makes Phpstorm Great for PHP Development
PHPStorm 9 has a veritable cornucopia of features devoted to enhancing developer productivity and saving you time and effort; from hassle-free debugging to the numerous inspections and intentions. This talk will rapidly run through of a range of the features you’re likely to use on a daily basis.

How to Parse XML With SimpleXML and PHP
In this PHP tutorial, you’ll learn how to parse XML using SimpleXML and PHP.

Interviewing Christian Wenz, talking about PHP, .NET & Las Vegas
Last week I was in Las Vegas for Zendcon. I had the pleasure of catching up with my buddy Christian Wenz. Christian lives in Munich and he co-owns Arrabiata Solutions. He’s also a consultant and focuses mainly on the web in general. The thing with Christian is that he is both a Microsoft MVP and an established PHP community member. In the interview we talk about the difference between PHP & .NET for web projects and also about both communities. The second part of the interview is about Las Vegas. Sin City is a place you can love and hate at the same time. We talk about hotels, shows and more.

php[architect] November 2015 issue released
Are you as excited for the PHP 7 release - scheduled for this month as we go to print - as I am? I’m sure you are. This major release brings significant new features to our favourite language, and huge performance improvements. Just like we can’t point to one single event as the cause of the European Renaissance, many factors have contributed to the PHP Renaissance of recent years. PHP 7 continues this legacy and brings important new capabilities for us to use. Now, it’s up to us to continue expanding the reach of the PHP community by investigating new solutions, sharing what we learn by writing and speaking, connecting with other communities, and welcoming new folks with open arms.


Do you have a position that you would like to fill? PHP Weekly is ideal for targeting developers and the cost is only $50/week for an advert.  Please let me know if you are interested by emailing me at [email protected]

Interesting Projects, Tools and Libraries

Flight is a fast, simple, extensible framework for PHP. Flight enables you to quickly and easily build RESTful web applications.

This library provides a fast implementation of a regular expression based router.

A PHP string manipulation library with multibyte support. Compatible with PHP 5.3+, PHP 7, and HHVM. 

Pimple is a small Dependency Injection Container for PHP.

A PHP CMS powered by Laravel 5 and Sentry.

A PHP desktop/mobile user agent parser with support for Laravel, based on Mobiledetect.

Limonade is a PHP micro framework for rapid web development and prototyping.

PHP library/framework for building Web apps while respecting the 5 principles of RESTful design.

Prophecy is a highly opinionated yet very powerful and flexible PHP object mocking framework.

Geotools is a PHP geo-related library, built atop Geocoder and React libraries.

Cilex is a simple command line application framework to develop simple tools based on Symfony2 components.

Phalcon is a web framework delivered as a C extension providing high performance and lower resource consumption.

Phan is a static analyser for PHP.

The Iniscan is a tool designed to scan the given php.ini file for common security practices and report back results.

Cloak is a library that takes a code coverage.

PHP client for Stream
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