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April 14, 2016

Hi PHP fans, welcome to your latest edition of PHP weekly news.

Have you ever wanted a quick reference sheet for Laravel? The Laravel cheat sheet is available now.

Also this week, need help finding errors in your PHP script? We have an article on simple PHP code debugging. 

The second release candidate for WordPress 4.5 is available now, with almost 100 changes since the first one.

Plus this weeks Acquia podcast is the first of six recorded in Mumbai, at DrupalCon Asia 2016. It's actually a co-podcast introducing The Geek Voice, episode zero.

We are always on the lookout for great articles and tutorials for our newsletter, so please feel free to share anything you may have written, read or heard about.

Katie and Ade

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Fridays Off: The BEST Way To Become A Full-Time Developer
1000s of developers from all over the world, from every walk of life and in every kind of financial situation, have asked me this question. Here’s exactly what you need to know to work full-time as a web developer.

Experience With Immigration Fraud
After experiencing an immigration fraud attempt, read why Anna Filina made the decision to no longer provide invitation letters to conference attendees. 

Newton’s 3 Laws of Software Craftsmanship
Are there unbreakable laws ruling the process of software development? I asked myself this question while reflecting on a recent project, and the answer leads to many conclusions, some already known and some more revealing.

Laravel Cheat Sheet
Have you ever wanted a quick reference sheet for Laravel? The Laravel Cheat Sheet is a new project from the EST Group that shows you many of the Laravel features from a filterable web app.

Tutorials and Talks

Working with Docker and PHP
Docker is an open-source project that automates the deployment of applications inside software containers, by providing an additional layer of abstraction and automation of operating-system-level virtualisation on Linux. It is also a tool that can package an application and its dependencies in a virtual container that can run on any Linux server.

Crash Course into Continuous Testing with Sismo
The PHP community started to adopt the testing culture relatively recently. Despite there being some debates on how to achieve this, nobody can argue the importance of having your code fully covered by tests. In this article, we’re going to explore a tool that will help you in a major part of the testing culture called continuous testing. 

Make Your WordPress Posts More Attractive with the Visualizer Charts and Graphs Plugin
Users that read blog posts love to see graphics that visualize the information that the posts are talking about. One way to include nice graphics in your WordPress blog posts is to present charts or graphs that help to visualize interesting data sets. Read this article to learn how to embed nice interactive charts and graphs in your WordPress blog using the Visualizer plugin.

Setting up UUIDs in Laravel 5+
UUID is short for “universal unique identifier”, which is a set of 36 characters containing letters and numbers. Each set should be unique, with there only being a chance for repetition each 100 years. Learn how to set up UUIDs in a Laravel project.

Simple PHP Code Debugging
Each beginner (and more advanced) PHP coder will fail because of errors while writing PHP code. This post will teach you some simple things about how you can find those errors in your PHP script. By default some errors will not show up on your web server!

WordPress Actions and Filters: What's the Difference?
Action and filter hooks are a fundamental part of the various WordPress APIs. Without them you're limited as to what you can do in your themes and (especially) your plugins. But sometimes it can be easy to confuse the two, especially in cases when WordPress has both an action hook and a filter hook with the same name. In this article I'll define action and filter hooks and describe the difference between them, and I'll demonstrate how to use them in your themes and plugins. I'll also give some examples of when you might use each.

Using Eloquent in Slim Framework
Eloquent is one of the easier ORMs to get started with, so let's look at how to use and test it within a Slim Framework application.

Simple Access Control for CakePHP3
The newest version of CakePHP doesn't ship with built in ACL, which means you need to write your own. Personally I think this is a smart move, having looked at the one-size-fits-all solutions for previous versions of the framework and knowing that every system has different requirements. This version has good hooks and documentation on how to add something that works for your application. I thought I'd share what worked for mine.

A Comprehensive Guide to Using Cronjobs
Cron is a time-based job scheduler in Unix-like operating systems, which triggers certain tasks at a point in the future. This article is an in-depth walkthrough of this program, and a reboot of this ancient, but still surprisingly relevant post.

Setting Up Step Debugging in Zend Studio
Recently I was helping someone set up step debugging in Zend Studio, and had some difficulties. Therefore I decided to create a blog post to remind me later, and perhaps help others get it set up. I was doing this on an Ubuntu laptop, so while menus may vary slightly the process should be very similar.

PSR-7 and Session Cookies
One of the great things about PHP is its session handling capabilities. One call to session_start() and a huge amount of heavy lifting is done for you. It’s a great aid when writing page scripts. However, as you start to need finer control over the HTTP response in your project, some of the automatic session behaviours begin to get in the way.

Clean Code and The Art of Exception Handling
Exceptions are as old as programming itself. Back in the days when programming was done in hardware, or via low-level programming languages, exceptions were used to alter the flow of the program, and to avoid hardware failures.
News and Announcements

WordPress 4.5 RC2
The second release candidate for WordPress 4.5 is now available. We’ve made 91 changes since the first release candidate. RC means we think we’re done, but with millions of users and thousands of plugins and themes, it’s possible we’ve missed something.

Italian PHP Conference - May 13-14th 2016, Verona
2 days, 2 tracks, 20+ international speakers dedicated solely to PHP development, technologies and management. With talks about design, project management, agile and various PHP-related technologies like Zend Framework2, Symfony2, Laravel, Drupal, Wordpress. Tickets are on sale now.

PHPKOnf - May 21st-22nd 2016, Istanbul
PHPKonf is hosted by the Istanbul PHP community, and you're invited! We'll host some of the best speakers, awesome talk topics, latest technologies, and up to date news in PHP. Tickets are on sale now.

php[tek] - May 23-27th 2016, St Louis
Once again the team behind php[architect] magazine will be hosting their annual php[tek] conference! For this 11th edition of php[tek] we are excited to announce that we are moving to St. Louis!  The new larger venue will allow us to continue to grow this conference, allowing more people from the PHP community to come together for a week of learning and camaraderie! Tickets are on sale now.

The PHP Tour - May 23rd-24th 2016, Auvergne, France
Organised by AFUP, the French PHP users group, and Clermont’ech, a local organisation which gathers developers from the area. This year, part of the program will focus on performance. With more and more business-critical applications, performance becomes decisive. Performance is in the core of PHP7, the latest version of our language. Tickets are on sale now.


Voices of the ElePHPant - Interview with Damien Seguy
This week Cal Evans talks to Damien Seguy, a member of the SweetLakePHP Group.

Three Devs and a Maybe Podcast - You Know, You Know, You Know
In this episode (where Edd says ‘You Know’ alot!) we start off with a discussion surrounding Lew’s recent move. Following this, we chat about odd IE 9 bugs, PostgreSQL Query Optimiser internals, the NPM left-pad saga and Lumen. This leads us on to discuss different Database GUI applications, Lew’s fun with public-key API authentication and the anti-pattern of striving for ‘pretty’ URLs. Finally, we bring up the topic of handling email delivery, using DigitalOcean to host podcast episodes and an interesting tidbit on the ‘break’ control structure in PHP.

That Podcast Episode 29 - npm install left-pad
Beau and Dave talk about the recent left-pad kerfuffle in the javascript community.

Acquia Podcast - Co-Podcast from Mumbai! Introducing The Geek Voice with Parth and Hussain
Welcome to the first of six podcasts I recorded in Mumbai at DrupalCon Asia 2016! It was a pleasure to record this conversation with an old Drupal friend and Acquia podcast guest--Hussain Dehgamwala (aka Hussain Abbas)--and a new Drupal friend and guest--Parth Gohil--both from Axelerant. And it was my privilege to be the first guest on their new podcast, The Geek Voice! We’re releasing this conversation together. Be sure to go check out Episode Zero of their show to see what else they have up their sleeves ... and what they said about me when I wasn’t around ;-)

MageTalk Magento Podcast #87 -  “What Does Babyface David Have to Say?” (feat Ryan Atkins)
The guys talk about the role of strategy in a digital agency with Ryan Atkins of Allies.

PHP Round Table Podcast - A Lone Star PHP 2016 Special
We recorded live from Lone Star PHP 2016 in the Acacia room. If you're here in TX, join us for a chance to take home a white Confoo elePHPant!

Zend Framework Quick Bites - Episode 5
With Zend Expressive, you can build all kinds of middleware-based applications, such as APIs, websites, single page applications, even extremely large and sophisticated applications. In this episode, I'll show you four key ways in which you can configure your expressive applications.

Laravel IO Podcast - Episode 44:  I Like The CranApple
In this episode the crew chats about Laravel Elixir, Spark, VAT MOSS, and juice.

Reading and Viewing

Get this "Instant PHP Web Scraping" ebook, For Free
Get up and running with the basic techniques of web scraping using PHP. Claim your "Instant PHP Web Scraping" free eBook (valued at $12.99) today.

Contributor Of Genesis Framework And WordPress Bill Erickson Dissects The CMS Industry And Advises On WordPress Issues
Bill Erickson is one of the top WordPress Developers, living in Georgetown, TX (North of Austin). He has been contributing in the WordPress community since 2006 by using his tremendous skills. He is a prolific plugin developer, popular WordPress events speaker, a mentor who shares his knowledge openly in the form of code snippets and tutorials. He is also the tinkerman and core contributor to Genesis Framework and WordPress Core.

Stop Multiplying by 4
Many developers are often asked by project owners to give time estimates for features or bug fixes. But how many developers have the ability to provide project owners with a reasonable estimate? Many developers will just follow irrational formulas or arbitrary methods to create a number that is not only wrong, but costly. “Stop Multiplying by 4” will teach developers of all skill levels easy techniques to provide accurate estimations. We will start with a small calibration exercise to find out how good you are. We will then go over procedures to improve accuracy. At the end of the talk, you will possess the skills to get you started on improving the certainty of your estimates.


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Interesting Projects, Tools and Libraries

A PHP client for consuming Yelp API.

Native PHP template system that's fast, easy to use and easy to extend.

Laravel Form builder for version 4 and 5.

High performance PHP router.

SimplePie is a very fast and easy-to-use class, written in PHP, that puts the 'simple' back into 'really simple syndication'. 

PHP's best friend for the terminal, CLImate allows you to easily output coloured text, special formats, and more.

Workerman is a library for event-driven programming in PHP, with a huge number of features.

Kafka client for PHP.

Smart PHP intelligent code completion server for composer projects. 

PHP-DI dependency injection container implementation for Slim Framework.

A tool for quickly measuring the size of a PHP project.

MINI is an extremely simple and easy to understand skeleton PHP application, reduced to the max. 

Mobile_Detect is a lightweight PHP class for detecting mobile devices (including tablets).

Free, open-source, self-hosted CMS platform based on the Laravel PHP Framework.

Icicle is a PHP library for writing asynchronous code using synchronous coding techniques.

A flexible, fast and secure template language for PHP.

Phinx makes it ridiculously easy to manage database migrations for your PHP app. In less than 5 minutes you can install Phinx and create your first database migration.

PHPbrew builds and installs multiple version PHP(s) in your $HOME directory.
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