PHP Digest: Release of PHP 5.5, Understanding Streams in PHP, PhpStorm Video Tutorials and Much More!

July 2, 2013


PHP 5.5:

  1. Long-awaited release of PHP 5.5 finally happened — let's see how to migrate from PHP 5.4.x to PHP 5.5.x here and try to know more about the full official change log here. According to the previous decision, 5.3.x branch is currently under closing. The last regular release will be 5.3.27. During this year, the fixes in the security area will be released if necessary, then 5.3 support will be stopped completely.
  2. New design of in beta — having had a short rest after the release of v.5.5, the developers seem to equip beta testing with a completely new design as the old one had a very old-fashioned look. HTML5, jQuery and jQueryUI are used. In addition, we are pleased not only with the autocompletion search (as it is not a surprise), but with a brief description of the functions, methods, categories, etc. While we can't say that the updated changed logo made us happy a lot.
  3. New features in PHP 5.5 — Nikita Popov collected all the most significant innovations into a single comfortable table specifying the author and the links to the appropriate RFC.
  4. Designing API: simplified password hashing — one of the new features in PHP 5.5.0 is to provide us with easier to use high-level functions which are stable against the developers' mistakes and are used to generate and verify the validity of the password hashing.
  5. PHP 5.5 is out, what's up with 5.4 and 5.3? — Release Manager of PHP 5.3 recommends its users who do not wish to change anything to continue using this version just installing updates for this branch in time. The same time the author recommends the PHP 5.4 users to upgrade up to v.5.5.
  6. PHP 5.5: new class constant — the post provides us with the example where it is really necessary to use a new constant. Also there are a few "alive" examples in the original RFC.
  7. PHP 5.5: out-of-the-box bytecode cache — a small overview of the past and the present bytecode caching in PHP.
  8. Practical usage of PHP 5.5 generators — the author implemented the function similar to range () with the use of the generator, and demonstrates how it reduced the memory consumption.

News and Releases:

  1. WordPress 3.5.2 released — the release includes important security fixes. All users are strongly recommended to upgrade immediately.
  2. Codeception 1.6.3 released — an excellent testing tool. Although it is rather minor, it contains some nice new features, such as a module for Yii and Facebook-2 module.
  3. PHP QB version 1.3 is out — an alternative virtual machine for PHP is updated. Due to static typing it allows developers to get a significant boost in performance for a number of specific tasks.


  1. PHP Internals Book: Hashtables — a new chapter of the book is devoted to the hashtable - a data structure that is commonly used when implementing the interpreter.
  2. RFC: Support for anonymous catches, Structural Type Hinting — despite the fact that the new version of PHP was released recently, there are some suggestions for future versions. They are not so revolutionary yet, but we'll see what happens next.

Training Materials:

  1. Is that possible to make Phalcon even faster? Yes! — Phalcon can be really made much faster if to use the Profile-guided optimization based on profiling data.
  2. Packing a Symfony full-stack framework application in one file — if in the previous post Fabien wrote about the reasons and motives which made him to pack the application in one file, this time he started to implement his plan. It's worth noting that only the application will be packed in one file while the framework code and the code of tools will remain in the vendor folder.
  3. Understanding Streams in PHP — many developers just ignore data streams. However, this powerful tool can often make life of the programmers much easier. This post is a good starting point for those who have decided to deal with the streams. Also there is a very good "Writing and using php streams and sockets" note.
  4. Desktop notifications for PHPUnit tests on Ubuntu — the author of the post suggests us not to look at the console just waiting when the tests are over, but to set up notifications on our desktop that would report us on the status of the testing process. This solution is for Ubuntu, but using the Growl the same can be done for OS X and Windows.
  5. Creating simple tasks app with Backbone.js and Slim micro framework, 2 — this two parts briefly show us how to use the popular JS-library in conjunction with Slim micro framework and NotORM library.
  6. PhpStorm video tutorials — almost 2 hours of screen casts where both the basic features of IDE and some other advanced types of usage are disclosed.
  7. Diving into Symfony 2 — a small post, which will be a good starting point for those who want to learn this framework.
  8. PHP upgrade broke my Data Importer — the author of the post describes the problem he faced when upgrading from PHP v. 5.3 to v. 5.4. You cannot just start using LOAD DATA INFILE, but the author has found a workaround.
  9. From Procedural to Object Oriented PHP — a large tutorial where at an example of the Google API client the author demonstrates us step-by-step transferring from the procedural approach to the object-oriented one.
  10. PHP interview with Phil Sturgeon — the author of PyroCMS, the participant of PHP-Fig, the contributor in CodeIgniter, FuelPHP, and Laravel talks about his experience in web development.
  11. Basics principles of using Arduino from PHP — the author of the post talks about the Firmata protocol and the use of PHP-libraries that implement asynchronous I/O, for example React. The author has implemented his own similar library - Carica Io and gives an example of its use.
  12. Google App Engine and a plea for Phalcon — the post contains a brief review of GAE, a bit of information and advice on the transition from conventional hosting on GAE and some reasoning as for unavailability of extensions. "Phalcon is more PHP6 than PHP6 in itself in some ways" - the author says and asks his readers to vote by ticking the corresponding request on the new opportunity for GAE.
  13. Becnhmarking Memcached and Redis clientstest results show that the selection of the correct client may be not less important than the selection of the storage.
  14. Data structures for PHP Devs: Stacks and Queues — in the very first post the author talks about stacks and queues. Basic principles, an example of implementation of the corresponding objects in PHP and a few words about the internal implementation from the SPL. The post will be useful for junior developers and beginners.
  15. Using ZFTool for Basic Project Management — the tutorial on how to use the command line tool for ZF2, which allows developers to automate a number of basic operations.
  16. The power of Uniform Resource Location in PHP — the author described the benefits of uniform resource location in PHP and made a proposal in PHP-FIG to approve it as a standard. In this case a resource may be the template file, the configuration file, an image, etc.
  17. Speed up your PHP application with Zend OpCache — if you want to use OpCache, but you have no wish to update to 5.5, there is a little guide for you on how to install and configure the extension.
  18. Backwards compatibility is for suckers — Anthony Ferrara, the well-known core-PHP developer believes that if one of the goals of your project is declared as backward compatibility, you are a real sucker. He also encourages to think more about the forward compatibility, that is, to try to anticipate the possible changes.
  19. How to use Propel in Laravel 4 — a short note on how to use Propel ORM-library instead of the built-in the framework library called Eloquent ORM.
  20. Array operators in PHP — the description and examples of array operators in PHP.
  21. PuPHPet by the BBQ — much was said in our previous digest issues about PuPHPet service, which allows developers to virtualize the working environment quickly and efficiently. The link leads to the post with a short review. Also you can know more about Vagrant and Puppet here and to see good slides on Vagrant here.
  22. HTTP vs HTTPS performance with/without keep-alive — a good post where the author points to the typical error of libraries' creators. According to the author, they often ignore the opportunity to establish a persistent HTTP-connection when necessary.

Interesting News from the Latest Conferences:

  1. Lone Star PHP 2013 — 23 slides of talks held at the conference in Dallas devoted entirely to PHP.
  2. Dependency Injection and Dependency Injection Containers — good slides of the talk from the deSymfony 2013 conference held in Spain. Slides of other reports are available here, but unfortunately almost all of them are in Spanish.
  3. An overview of The Symfony 2 PHP framework — the video of the talk on the internals of the framework and the principles on which it is based.
  4. A framework is no architecture — a video of the talk where it is discussed why your favorite framework does not provide the architecture of the application and what the consequences are.
  5. PHP Object Injection revisited — an excellent presentation on safety data deserialization in PHP launched in the CONFidence conference held not long ago in Krakow.

Do you have an awesome business idea? Let’s make it real!

Join our newsletter!

Get weekly updates of the top IT news delivered straight to your inbox


Magento website development. Empower your online store!