Archive | July, 2005

PEAR::Date issues

Posted on 15 July 2005 by Demian Turner

At work we use PEAR::Date all over the place, and while the package is fine for most things, when it comes to timezone handling and daylight savings time offsets, there are some serious bugs that have been open in the PEAR bugtracker for around one year.

Andrew Hill writes in detail about a problem he’s trying to resolve regarding the TZ environment variable not being set in many linux systems and how this causes PEAR::Date to blow up when in DST.

Have similar experiences? Feel free to comment here since his ezPublish comments don’t work for anonymous users.

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PHP 5 Objects, Patterns, and Practice

Posted on 11 July 2005 by Demian Turner

Ever wanted to post something for over a month and never found the time?

I recently read Matt Zandstra‘s PHP 5 Objects, Patterns, and Practice and thought I’d say a few good words about it for those who haven’t been recommended yet. A lot of good PHP5 books have come out recently, eg something like PHP 5 Power Programming is an excellent resource for the finer points of charset issues, utf8 in PHP, timezone gotchas.  But it’s quite unusual in PHP circles for a book to come out that gives overall sound advice on application design.

I found Matt, who comes from a Java background, really hit the nail on the head, this book is an enjoyable read. While the first few chapters make allowances for readers who don’t have a lot of exposure to OOP, the rest is quite a stimulating read, helped along in no small part by Matt’s excellent unambiguous writing style.

The book deals not only with all major components of a large application, but has a very nice section on the Composite pattern, and spends time looking at Phing, PEAR, and the Reflection API, among other things. The book finishes off with a parser project that brings together a lot of the concepts introduced in earlier chapters – I think even PHPers who consider themselves advanced will enjoy this. Matt apparently works for Yahoo in London.

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Seagull 0.4.4 Released

Posted on 10 July 2005 by Demian Turner

This is primarily a bugfix release, some important flaws were fixed, including two updates from the PEAR community for problems discovered in the XML-RPC library – all users are recommended to upgrade.

There are no schema/SQL data modifications from the previous release, however there were some  changes to the CSS so you’ll want to use the latest style.php file.

Get the latest version here.

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A message of praise to Londoners

Posted on 09 July 2005 by Demian Turner

As a Londoner this latest terrorist attack struck close to home (my office is in the middle bottom of the map).  Like most who travel into the capital to work, I was a commuter on the tube at 8.50 when the first bomb went off. Like others, I had been imagining for some time the horror of what it would be like to be in the tube, in a tunnel, if a bomb should go off.  The terrorists clearly planned for maximum carnage – all 3 tube bombs went off in the tunnel, at the busiest time of the day, in some of the deepest parts of the network.  For those who don’t know how crowded London tubes are, imagine you’re so packed in you can’t read the paper or a book.

As reported in the media, London’s highly skilled emergency services were prepared for such an incident and handled it in a way that impressed all who looked on. And news watchers around the globe have marvelled at how tough-skinned Londoners have been in their reaction to the disaster.

I would like to offer my condolences to the injured and maimed, to those who are still in shock, and to the friends and families who lost loved ones in the attack.  I am proud to belong to a city that denied the terrorists their objectives.

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