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StarTutorial.com:
Understanding Design Patterns - Simple Factory
Feb 19, 2018 @ 12:38:43

On the StarTutorial.com site, they've posted the latest in their article series covering design patterns and their implementation in PHP. In this latest tutorial they cover the simple factory pattern. To help illustrate the point of the pattern they use an example of a toy company with an ever-expanding line of toys.

Dragon Inc. is one of the top toy manufacturers in China. In fact, they're a pioneer in toy manufacturing. They started production at a time when few toys were being produced commercially. Hence, they dominated the market and became the leader in the toy production industry.

The initial version of their produceToy method only had to worry about toy cars and helicopters. As their line expanded, it needed to be updated for "jumping frogs" too. Adding each new toy to the single function would be difficult to maintain but the simple factory pattern came to the rescue. It allowed for the abstraction of the toy object creation out to other handling and other objects, breaking the functionality up in accordance with the Single Responsibility Principle.

tagged: tutorial designpattern simple factory series toy

Link: https://www.startutorial.com/articles/view/understanding-design-patterns-simple-factory

Nikola Poša:
Factory as a Service
Feb 19, 2018 @ 10:53:16

In a post to his site Nikola Poša looks at a method that can be used to provide a slightly different object from a dependency injection container based on other criteria: making use of a factory as a service.

Dependency Injection Containers are a great invention - when used the right way, they allow us to keep our factories and assembly logic of services outside the core business logic of our application.

By default, a service created is shared, meaning that exactly the same instance will be returned whenever service is retrieved from a container. This is a desired behaviour in most of the cases. [...] Yet certain use cases may require services to be created conditionally during runtime, such as for example based on the value of a parameter resolved from the current request.

He first covers some of the anti-patterns that could be used to resolve this issue: a setter method on the returned object, using a service manager or creating a static factory instead. He offers a solution to the problem that makes use of a factory inside of the DI container. This factory then uses configuration values from the container to set up the object and return it.

tagged: factory service dependency injection tutorial database connection

Link: https://blog.nikolaposa.in.rs/2018/02/16/factory-as-a-service/

Sergey Zhuk:
Does Factory Method Violate Open/Closed Principle
Jan 25, 2018 @ 11:18:22

Sergey Zhuk has written up a post to his site that wonders if the factory method violates the open/closed principle, a part of the SOLID set of principles for software development.

Consider an application that provides some statistics reports. Reports are present in different formats: JSON for API, HTML for viewing in a browser and pdf for printing on the paper. It has StatisticsController that receives a required format from the request and returns a formatted report. The logic for choosing a formatting strategy is hidden behind the factory.

He works through a code example of using the factory pattern to create this functionality, generating the fomatter from behind the factory. He then talks about adding a new formatter for CSVs and the update to the factory that would come with it. It's this last change he's wondering about as the Open/Closed principle states that objects should be open for extension but not modification. While the answer is technically "yes" he explains that the purpose of the factory is to abstract the logic away so you only have to deal with one type of thing rather than making it yourself every time.

According to Open-Closed Principle the “correct” solution would be to create a new factory with the same interface. That said, adherence to this principle should always be weighed against other design principles like KISS and YAGNI.
tagged: openclosed solid principle factory violation

Link: http://sergeyzhuk.me/2018/01/25/factory-method-and-open-closed/

Rob Allen:
Customising Whoops in Expressive
Nov 08, 2017 @ 09:53:40

Rob Allen has a new post to his site showing how you can customize the Whoops output in a Zend Expressive application. Whoops is a package that provides more well-structured and more attractive error output when an issue comes up.

I find the Whoops error handler page in Expressive quite hard to read and particularly dislike that the error message displayed in the top left is hidden if it's more than a few words long.

To fix this, I discovered that you can provide a custom CSS file to the PrettyPrintHandler and then override to your heart's content! One way to do this is to add a delegator factory to add the additional functionality, so let's do that.

He then includes the configuration changes you'll need to make in the Expressive setup to have it recognize the factory and be able to use it as a dependency. He then includes the code to create the factory itself, adding a path to the local CSS files and pushing the custom whoops.css file into the page handler. Example CSS is included showing an update to the display of the main message, removing the need for a mouseover to view it.

tagged: zendexpressive zendframework whoops error handler css configuration factory tutorial

Link: https://akrabat.com/customising-whoops-in-expressive/

Alejandro Celaya:
Reusing factories in Zend ServiceManager
Jul 25, 2017 @ 10:03:33

Alejandro Celaya has a new post to his site showing the Zend Framework users out there how you can reuse factories in Zend/ServiceManager. Factories are heavily utilized by the component to create the objects the service returns. Factories tend to be single-use, however, but Alejandro has shown a way around that.

I like zend-servicemanager because it is explicit, and you are always in control of what's done, without loosing flexibility in the process. Since this container expects you to define factories for every service, you usually end up writing, testing and maintaining a lot of factories that doesn't add value to the application.

That's why it is so important to properly reuse factories when possible, not only because you will have to maintain less classes, but because the ServiceManager will instantiate less objects at runtime when it can reuse a factory.

He then talks about ways you can set up shared factories in your application including the use of an abstract factory class or a concrete factory to return other dependencies required. He also shows how to use the ConfigAbstractFactory that allows for the injection of dependencies based on a configuration (similar to the "wiring" in other dependency injection containers). Finally he shows the use of the ReflectionBasedAbstractFactory that handles the injection in about the same way but instead of basing it on a configuration it uses PHP's own reflection to try to determine the class and autoload it into the current system.

tagged: factory zend servicemanager zendframework configuration reflection abstract tutorial

Link: https://blog.alejandrocelaya.com/2017/07/21/reusing-factories-in-zend-servicemanager/

SitePoint PHP Blog:
The Theory of Constraints in PHP
Jul 12, 2017 @ 11:22:44

On the SitePoint PHP blog they've posted a tutorial about the Theory of Constraints, how it can be related back to PHP and what it means for building effective code.

I had been reading The Phoenix Project, a great novel about IT (you read that right), which presents day to day IT and devops problems at a large Amazon-like company in a way which makes mortals understand the complexities and chaos of 21st century technology.

Without giving away any spoilers, at one point in the book the Theory of Constraints is mentioned. [...] The Theory of Constraints can be distilled to the idea that the chain is only as strong as its weakest link.

In the book it was phrased thusly: "Any improvements made anywhere besides the bottleneck are an illusion." For some reason, this resonated with me much more than the chain idiom. There’s just something about building something that’s ineffective that’s more relatable to me than breaking something that’s weakly built.

He goes on to talk about the subject of "factories" and "browsers", relating work done (or not done) on browsers to a factory where throughput of work isn't optimized. He then applies this back to PHP, mentioning some of the tools that can help optimize your workflow to prevent the same kind of factory backlog. This list includes services like Blackfire, XDebug and MySQL optimization techniques.

tagged: theory constraints quality factory optimize workflow tools qa

Link: https://www.sitepoint.com/theory-constraints-php/

Rob Allen:
Simple way to add a filter to Zend-InputFilter
Jun 21, 2017 @ 09:16:29

Rob Allen has a quick new post to his site sharing a simple way to add a filter to the Zend-InputFilter component when it's in use on your site.

Using Zend-InputFilter is remarkably easy to use. [...] How do you add your filter to it though?

He starts with an example of putting the component to use in requiring and filtering the value in "my_field" for the data provided. He then shows how to add his "simple filter that does absolutely nothing", the MyFilter, to the current set. He also shows the creation of a "filter factory" class that registers the custom filter into the chain with an alias of "MyFIlter". You can then use it just like you would any other filter and define it in your rules specification.

tagged: zendframework zendinputfilter component custom filter tutorial factory

Link: https://akrabat.com/simple-way-to-add-a-filter-to-zend-inputfilter/

Nikola Posa:
Using Monolog with Zend Service Manager
Jun 16, 2017 @ 12:09:27

Nikola Posa has a new post to his site showing you how to can combine Monolog for logging with Zend Service Manager, a component from the Zend Framework, defining the logger as a service that can be easily used (and re-used) across an application.

Without any doubt, Monolog and Zend Service Manager are two libraries that are almost always found in the composer.json file require section of my projects. In case you didn't know, Monolog is a PSR-3 compliant logging library that allows you to save logs to various storage types and web services, while Zend Service Manager is a PSR-11 compliant dependency injection container and a service locator implementation that facilitates management of application dependencies.

In this post I'm gonna show you how the two can work together.

He starts with an example of configuring the ServiceManager instance with a factory dependency that manually creates the Monolog logger inline. While this works, it's not idea, mixing configuration and functionality. He shows how to refactor the same functionality into a factory class that performs the same function but isolates it from the configuration. He then takes this further and separates out the environment-specific configuration from the handling and, finally, shows the creation of a more general logging factory that allows the definition of different kinds of loggers based on the need.

tagged: monolog zendservicemanager component tutorial combine factory configuration

Link: http://blog.nikolaposa.in.rs/2017/06/12/using-monolog-with-zend-service-manager/

Medium.com:
Expressive Code & Real Time Facades
May 10, 2017 @ 11:13:54

On his Medium.com blog Laravel project lead Taylor Otwell shares some of his thoughts on expressive code and real-time facades and how they make things simpler, event for testing/mocking.

Recently, I worked on some code that surfaced my most common use-case for Laravel 5.4’s “real-time” facades. If you’re not familiar with this feature, it allows you to use any of your application’s classes as a Laravel “facade” on-demand by prefixingFacades to the namespace when importing the class. This is not a feature that is littered throughout my code, but I find it occasionally provides a clean, testable approach to writing expressive object APIs.

To illustrate he uses the code from the Laravel Forge service talking about service providers (like DigitalOcean, Linode, etc) and "service" classes to contain API methods. He then shifts over to the controller to see how he'd like to access it, making a generic Provider class with a make method to create the instance. This has an issue, however, with testing making it very difficult. Instead he shifts over to the real-time facades and a factory where the test can more easily manually mock the method into a stub provider (example included).

tagged: expressive code realtime facade testing factory tutorial

Link: https://medium.com/@taylorotwell/expressive-code-real-time-facades-41c442914291

Master Zend Framework:
How To Generate Class Factories The Easy Way with FactoryCreator
Jan 20, 2017 @ 10:07:57

The Master Zend Framework site has a new tutorial posted guiding you through the process of generating class factories the easy way with the help of the "FactoryCreator" tool in the Zend ServiceManager component.

If there’s one thing that’s always frustrated me when working with Zend Framework, it’s having to create factories for classes. Sure, it’s gotten easier as Zend ServiceManager’s continued to ever improve. And PhpStorm and Zend ServiceManager Grand Master, Gary Hockin, has given me a number of great tips and suggestions.

But it’s always been something I’ve felt frustrated by. Perhaps you feel the same. [...] But, what I’ve felt for some time is that they could also make it easier for us to follow these best practices too, such as with some tooling support. In the latest release of Zend ServiceManager, version 3.2.0, they have.

He goes on to talk about two tools that are included in this latest release: the ConfigDumper and FactoryCreator. He helps you get the FactoryCreator tool installed and provides a simple example of it in use, generating the factory for a "JournalService" class. He includes the results of the generation of the simple example before moving on to a more complicated example: a TableGateway object. The final example shows the generation of the factory for an "Actions" class, handling the controller processing for a simple MVC application. If you're a bit shorter on time, he's also created a screencast version of the tutorial you can view in-page or over on Vimeo.

tagged: zendframework generate class factory factorycreator tutorial screencast

Link: http://www.masterzendframework.com/simple-factory-generation-with-factorycreator/