Continuing their look at design patterns, DevShed has kicked off yet another series today spotlighting the Composite pattern as used in PHP5.
The composite pattern is one of the less commonly used patterns in PHP 5. Nevertheless, in certain situations, it is very helpful. This article, the first one in a two-part series, will introduce you to the basic concepts of the composite pattern.
The composite pattern allows you to define a single or multiple objects that will have identical behavior - basically behaving the same if there's just one or with the multiple instances. They start with the basics, reaching for one of their standard examples - a file information reader - to illustrate their point. They create the two helper classes it needs to work, one for the single file read and another for the multiple file read. The finish by combining them all together for a file-reading fiesta, showing how to get a one shot info dose as well adding files to the list and grabbing their info all together.