PHP Annotated Monthly – September 2017

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Want to know what’s going on in the world of PHP and it’s relevant technologies? Don’t have the time or the energy to trawl the internet to find the best posts that you want to read? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered! All the articles from around the web collated in one place by PhpStorm’s Developer Advocate Gary Hockin.

PHP, Testing & Development

PHP 7.2 is edging ever closer. PHP 7.2.0 Release Candidate 1 Released right at the end of August and I for one, welcome our new Argon2 password hash overlords. Don’t know what I’m talking about? Enrico Zimuel has you covered in Protecting Passwords with Argon2 in PHP 7.2. Kudos to all involved for another great release and keeping PHP relevant.

It goes without saying that if you’re running any version of PHP 5 – now is the time to upgrade. In less than 6 months PHP 5.6 (the only currently supported version of PHP 5) loses its active support, so there’s never been a more compelling time to take advantage of the amazing new features in PHP 7.1.

Frameworks and Libraries

Laravel 5.5 has been released which is the new LTS major version of Laravel – congratulations to Taylor and the team for another stellar product. I haven’t had a chance to try it out yet, but I’m looking forward to having the Whoops error handler again which is something I’ve come to rely on when working on Zend Framework apps.  If you’re not using Whoops in your own projects, it’s definitely worth looking at.

There’s also an impressive raft of articles around Twig this month which goes to show that good libraries stay around for a long time. I was also very interested in an article on  Grav CMS which made me want to take a look at Grav – a flat file generated CMS with a decent ecosystem. I’ve added it to the bottom of my never ending to-do list.


Zend Framework



Community, Career, and Events

This month I’ll be speaking at DrupalCon Vienna on the 25th and 26th of September, telling you 43 Tips and Tricks for PhpStorm. I’ll be giving the same talks at the end of that week at CodeTalks in Hamburg. If you’re at either of these events and want to have a chat about PhpStorm, PHP or anything else then come and find me!

Alex Bilbie, the author of the popular OAuth2 Server promoted by the highly elitist League of Extraordinary Packages, is looking for a new maintainer for the project. It’s a great project and if you use it in production or have a horse in that race, then consider stepping up.

Disclaimer: The League of Extraordinary Packages are a great collection of amazing packages, calling them elitist is my form of gently ribbing the members – they aren’t elitist.

Sitepoint’s post What Are the Workflows of Prominent PHP Community Members? is a fascinating read, documenting the workflow and tools that several community members use in their daily development. It would be remiss of me not to mention that lots of people list PhpStorm as their IDE of choice ;).

Finally, for this month, CommonMark, Colin O’Dell’s markdown parser (which is the de facto package for parsing markdown in PHP) hit 1,000,000 downloads. We’d like to send a huge congratulations to Colin (and the League of Extraordinary Packages) for this amazing milestone. CommonMark is one of those packages that sit atop the mountain in being the only tool you’ll ever need for a given job, for Colin has done amazing work over the years in writing and maintaining it. He outlines the journey to this impressive statistic in The Journey to 1,000,000 Downloads.

That’s it for September. I’ll be stepping back from writing blog posts in the future as I’m going part time with JetBrains (you can find out more in my blog post) but rest assured I’ll still be writing this roundup every month. As usual, if you want anything included then please get in touch.

– Gary & The PhpStorm Team

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