I recently built a GitHub Application for Stickler CI and wanted to share what I learned along the way. While the documentation for GitHub Applications is pretty good there were a few things I struggled with.
Stickler CI is a software as a service application that automates a tedious part of code review; enforcing consistent style and preventing lint errors. By integrating with GitHub, Stickler checks each pull request for style errors and post review comments when an error is found. This helps your team align on coding standards and provide more valuable feedback. Stickler is free for public repositories; private repositories require a paid plan.
Integration testing with external webservices, has historically been an uncomforable process in PHP for me. It frequently involves complicated mocking that was fragile and hard to maintain. I’ve long wished for a PHP library that was as simple to use as HTTPretty is in Python.
I’d like to introduce a project I’ve been working on over the past few months. Stickler-CI helps automate the tedious process of ensuring coding standards are followed during pull requests. Like many teams, FreshBooks uses pull requests as a way to solicit feedback from other developers, ensure consistent coding practices and catch bugs before they can cause real problems.
I recently finished upgrading this site to CakePHP 3.0.0-dev from 2.5.5. I thought I’d share my experiences, as they might be helpful to other people attempting to update a CakePHP 2.x application to 3.0.
In terms of scale & size, this site is pretty small and simple. It has a mere 12 tables, and ~5000 lines of code including HTML, and uses 3 plugins.
There will be a number of backwards compatibility (BC) breaks in the CakePHP 3.0.0 release. I thought it might be helpful to go over some of the reasons breaks in compatibility have been made. Each time we’ve had to break compatibility with 2.x we’ve done so because the existing behaviour fell into a few categories of problems. I’ll go over a few of the bigger categories in detail.
PHP5.5 has support for generators which are a powerful language feature available in other languages like Ruby and Python. While generators in PHP are very much like their Python counterparts, I wanted to give them a spin and try a few simple but useful examples of generators in action.
I recently had the opportunity to speak at PHP Conference Argentina . I’d like to thank Mariano and the other organizers for having me at the event. It was a fantastic opportunity for me to visit Buenos Aires, connect with some friends old and new, and give a new talk about my experiences working on CakePHP.
In a previous post, I outlined some changes that would be coming for configuration in CakePHP 3.0. I’ve recently been thinking a great deal about configuration as well as building some prototype applications. I’ve come to the conclusion that configuration needed to change. Coupling all the classes to Configure while convenient and simple, had a big drawback.
A while back I posted on twitter that I had figured out how to use xdebug & vim and promised to do a blog post on how I got it all working. This is that blog post. Before we can get started using Vim to remote debug PHP code, we’ll need to do a few things.
Many of the web applications I build have to talk to other webservices. Sometimes those services are internal API servers, sometimes they are external. In both situations, I want a simple, easy to use client library.
In the last article I went over the various static analysis tools I’ve found useful, and how to get them installed. For this installment, I’ll be going over how to use make to run all the tasks, and how to configure all the tools to work with Jenkins.
I’ve recently integrated static analysis tools into both my day job’s and CakePHP’s development process. Setting up static analysis tools is reasonably easy and can help you find problems before you even get to unit tests, or staging sites. They are also the ideal tool to help enforce coding standards, and best practices that can be checked by reading the code.
One of the new features in CakePHP 2.1 I am excited about are view blocks and view inheritance. Both are concepts borrowed from Jinja2 and other templating systems. Template inheritance allows you to create skeleton views, and define blocks to populate that skeleton in a child template.