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SitePoint PHP Blog:
Top 10 Z-Ray Features to Check Out
March 26, 2015 @ 09:50:23

The SitePoint PHP blog has a new post today from Daniel Berman (of Zend) with the top 10 features of Z-Ray to be sure to check out. Disclaimer: Z-Ray is a tool provided by Zend, a part of their Zend Server product.

Necessity is the mother of invention goes the famous saying. For PHP developers, there is no greater need than visibility. But developers today have a tough choice to make as they develop and debug their apps. Either use crude methods such as printing, debugging information, or storing it in a log file, or - use multiple debugging/profiling tools that are awkward and require a lot of work from the developer's side. [...] This article introduces the top 10 features of Z-Ray - an innovative new technology from Zend that makes PHP development a whole lot quicker and easier by giving developers unprecedented insight into their code - and the visibility they need to develop top-notch apps.

Among the items on their Top 10 list are things like:

  • Viewing information about page requests
  • Execution time and memory consumption
  • Showing errors and warnings
  • Viewing functions called during execution
  • Debugging features for mobile apps and APIs

Check out the full post for a list of more features and screenshots/detail on each one.

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Link: http://www.sitepoint.com/top-10-z-ray-features-check/

PHP.net:
Release of PHP 5.6.7, 5.5.23 and 5.4.39
March 20, 2015 @ 10:45:27

The PHP development group has announced the release of the latest versions in all three major versions of PHP currently supported: PHP 5.6.7, 5.5.23 and 5.4.39. These releases are bugfix only with several security updates included.

The PHP development team announces the immediate availability of [these new versions]. Several bugs have been fixed as well as CVE-2015-0231, CVE-2015-2305 and CVE-2015-2331. All PHP [5.6, 5.5 and 5.4] users are encouraged to upgrade to this version.

As always, you can get the latest released for each of these versions from the main downloads page (for Windows users on windows.php.net) and if you'd like to see the other changes besides the security-related fixes check out the full Changelog.

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version release language php54 php55 php56 security bugfix

Link: http://php.net/index.php#id2015-03-20-2

NetTuts.com:
Building Your Startup With PHP Localization With I18n
March 09, 2015 @ 10:43:08

In the latest part of their series of "building a startup" application in PHP, NetTuts.com looks at supporting internationalization with the functionality of the Yii framework.

This is part four of the Building Your Startup With PHP series on Tuts+. In this series, I'm guiding you through launching a startup from concept to reality using my Meeting Planner app as a real life example. Every step along the way, we'll release the Meeting Planner code as open source examples you can learn from. We'll also address startup-related business issues as they arise. In this tutorial, I wanted to step back and add I18n internationalization support to our application before we build more and more code.

They start off with a look at some of the overall goals of internationalization (i18n) and about how it works in the Yii system. It uses placeholders with a key/value system to replace the data based on which language is selected. They show you how to configure Yii's support including default language, sorting of the data and files to exclude when looking for i18n configurations. With this configuration in place they show how to use the command line tool to extract these messages out into separate folders for easier management and faster reference. Finally they show how to select a language and use the Yii code generator together with the translations to create models and forms.

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build startup series part4 internationalization i18n localization language yii framework

Link: http://code.tutsplus.com/tutorials/building-your-startup-with-php-localization-with-i18n--cms-23102

Zend Blog:
Developing a Z-Ray Extension
February 25, 2015 @ 11:54:41

Zend recently introduced their Z-Ray inspection tool that allows you to see inside your application and know what's happening in your code, your database and has support for major PHP projects. In this new post to their blog they show you how to develop a custom extension for the Z-Ray system.

One of the coolest features in Z-Ray is the ability to plug in your own extensions. Meaning, you can customize existing Z-Ray panels or add your own personalized Z-Ray panel for displaying information you think is important for developing your specific application. This short tutorial will describe how to write a basic extension for Z-Ray. More specifically, we'll be writing a Z-Ray extension for WordPress that extracts and displays a list of loaded WordPress plugins.

They give you a list of things you'll need to set up before you can get started including a simple WordPress installation on a Zend Server instance. With these in place they help you create the "zray.php" file to define the extension, how to enable it and setting up a "trace" on a function to hook it into the execution. They then dump the WP plugin information and reformat it a bit to show only the list of names and versions in the output panel. As a last touch, they add a logo to the panel to show in the bottom menubar with the WordPress logo.

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Link: http://blog.zend.com/2015/02/25/developing-z-ray-extension

Evert Pot:
The problem with password_hash()
February 25, 2015 @ 10:51:04

Evert Pot has shared some of his thoughts about why he has a problem with password_hash (and friends). His thoughts are initially about this particular feature but they're actually wider than that.

The initial introduction and rfc for these functions made me uneasy, and I felt like a lone voice against many in that I thought something bad was happening. I felt that they should not be added to the PHP engine. I think that we should not extend the PHP engine, when it's possible to write the same API in userland, or there are significant benefits to do it in PHP, such as performance. Since the heavy lifting of the password functions is done by underlying libraries that are already exposed to userland-PHP, it didn't make sense to me to expose it as well in the core.

He includes a list of things he sees as drawbacks for new C-based functionality in PHP including the fact that it extends the "PHP specification" and forces other projects to implement it (like HHVM). He does include a few positives, though, such as the increased visibility and legitimacy, but still thinks they don't outweigh the negatives.

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password hash core language c implementation opinion userland

Link: http://evertpot.com/password-hash-ew/

Full Stack Radio:
10 Type Safety Roundtable with Ryan Tablada and Matt Machuga
February 24, 2015 @ 09:15:55

In the latest episode of the Full Stack Radio podcast - episode #10, host Adam Wathan has two guests to talk about programming in a language with dynamic types versus static types.

In this episode, Adam talks with Ryan Tablada and Matt Machuga about the philosophical differences between programming in a statically typed language vs. a dynamically typed language. They talk about things like explicit interfaces vs. duck typing, function calling vs. message passing, and some of the recent RFCs around optional typing in the PHP community.

You can listen to this latest episode either through the in-page audio player or by subscribe to their feed to get the latest episodes as they're released.

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fullstackradio ep10 typesafety strong dynamic language podcast mattmachuga ryantablada

Link: http://fullstackradio.com/episodes/10

HHVM Blog:
Announcing a Specification for Hack
February 20, 2015 @ 13:51:15

Similar to how the language specification was released for PHP a little while back, the HHVM team has announced a new specification for Hack, the language they've created as a part of the HipHop VM project that's similar to PHP.

When we announced Hack, we were very excited for the community to get their hands on a programming language that has helped Facebook engineers become more productive in their day-to-day development and became, alongside PHP, the language used when developing applications running on HHVM. At the time of release, we had documentation geared for the programmer using Hack to develop applications. However, we did not have official documentation for those that might want to create a Hack implementation of their own or something like a Hack conformance test-suite. This specification fills that gap. It is the document for the Hack implementer, and an excellent supplemental document for the Hack user.

The remainder of the post talks about some of the reasoning behind creating the specification, pointing to resources where you can help contribute and a few thanks to some of the people that worked on it.

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specification hack hhvm facebook hiphop language

Link: http://hhvm.com/blog/8537/announcing-a-specification-for-hack

PHP.net:
PHP 5.6.6 is available
February 20, 2015 @ 09:08:51

Following on the heels of the other latest releases of PHP (5.5.22 and 5.4.38), the PHP development group has release the latest in the 5.6.x series - PHP 5.6.6.

The PHP development team announces the immediate availability of PHP 5.6.6. This release fixes several bugs and addresses CVE-2015-0235 and CVE-2015-0273. All PHP 5.6 users are encouraged to upgrade to this version.

You can get this latest release either directly from the downloads page (well, from a mirror) or if you're a Windows user you can get the binaries here. Upgrading is definitely recommended and you can find all the details of the release and what what fixed in the Changelog.

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language release cve bugfix security php566

Link: http://php.net/archive/2015.php#id2015-02-19-2

PHP.net:
Release of PHP 5.5.22 & 5.4.38
February 19, 2015 @ 11:09:40

The main PHP.net site has an announcement today about the latest released of the language fixing several bugs including a few security-related issues: PHP 5.5.22 and 5.4.38.

The PHP development team announces the immediate availability of PHP 5.5.22 and 5.4.38. This release fixes several bugs and addresses CVE-2015-0235 and CVE-2015-0273. All PHP 5.5 and 5.4 users are encouraged to upgrade to this version.

As always, you can get the latest source downloads from the downloads page or Windows users can get the binaries from windows.php.net. Those interested in the complete list of fixes in these releases can check out the latest entries in the Changelog.

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language release cve bugfix security changelog php55 php54

Link: http://php.net/archive/2015.php#id2015-02-19-1

Reddit.com:
So, what is PHP's nature? Anyone actually know exactly what it is?
February 13, 2015 @ 11:58:01

In this recent post to the /r/php subreddit on Reddit.com, the question is asked "what is the nature of PHP?" and how it relates to what features make it into the language and which don't.

I've heard many times that a proposed RFC/new feature got rejected by PHP internals in voting phase, since 'it does not fit the nature of PHP'. But the question is, what is PHP's nature? Does it even have a nature at all? If yes, is there a standard or guideline of what fits in PHP's nature? I think its very confusing, isnt it? Anyone actually have some insights in this?

In the comments other users provide a wide range of opinions including:

  • "I would recommend taking those types of comments with a grain of salt. PHP's nature is a very subjective topic, as you can tell by the other comments."
  • "PHP was made to make dynamic web pages at a time when webpages contained minimal dynamic content. It was made at a time when web pages doesn't required a programming language to generate."
  • "Easy to pick up and make a website for weak devs/prototypes (easy to abuse). Much of the hate for PHP is because this abuse is possible and exploited often."
  • "As someone mentioned, nobody who does any sort of web development today can ignore Javascript and they will typically be switching back and forth between Javascript and PHP every couple of minutes. This is our target user these days and as such this syntax is appropriate I think."

Check out the full post for more opinions or to voice your own!

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nature language opinion reddit

Link: http://www.reddit.com/r/PHP/comments/2vmh3o/so_what_is_phps_nature_anyone_actually_know/


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