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PHP Developer Days 2018 in Dresden

The PHPDD18 logo on a screen

At the end of September I travelled to Dresden for the PHP Developer Days 2018. The conference, organized by the Dresden PHP User Group, took place for the fourth time, but for the first time on two days: a workshop day and a conference day. On the day of the conference I was at the International Congress Center, but had already arrived the evening before to stroll through the Neustadt district of Dresden.


The river Elbe

I had visited the Saxon state capital only once a few years ago and touched the old town and the new town a little bit. This time I was only in the Neustadt, but a little longer. I ate delicious Czech "Knödel" with goulash and enjoyed some delicious beers in the Hopfenkult craft beer store and in the Zapfanstalt before returning to the hotel in the evening.

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User Group Code of Conduct


As you may know, I'm co-organizing two user groups, PHP User Group Rheinhessen and RheinMainJS, and although we've fortunately never had any complaints about or problems with abusive behavior or harassment, I would like to establish a Code of Conduct for these user groups.

Others have done this before: AmsterdamPHP has a Code of Conduct (CoC). phpMiNDS in Nottingham has one. Several user groups in Berlin support a CoC. A lot of conferences both in the PHP and JS communities have a Code of Conduct, e.g. phpDay and JSConf Europe among many others.

A painting of two men. The man at the center is looking off to his right while drawing a symbol with his right hand. His left hand is resting on a page in a book. He is wearing a robe with a hood. The man on the right is looking towards the front and is wearing a long-sleeve red shirt with a black jacket. Several writing utensils and books are on a table with a green tablecloth in the front of the image.

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Craft Beer in Kosovo

A couple of months ago, I had the chance to spend some days in Europe's youngest country: Kosovo. Depending on whom you ask, of course, it is or isn't a sovereign state. But since Germany recognizes it as independent state, I will treat it as such. It's complicated.

Unfortunately, I did not have as much time to travel the country as I would have liked, but I was keen to learn about local food and drinks, among a million other things (another blog post might follow). Also, as it happens so often, I caught a cold on my first day of travelling. Therefore I could not dive into as many activities as I had planned to.

Nevertheless, upon arriving in Pristina, Kosovo's capital, I was craving good food - and good beer. For I had searched the Internets before I left and I knew there was lots to discover. I even found the website of a craft brewery, yet was unsure how easy it would be to find their beer.

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The most frequently used PHP functions on GitHub

While preparing the April meetup of the PHP User Group Rheinhessen, Christian came up with an idea: Let's take a look at one of the least used and most "exotic" internal functions of PHP and discuss them. Soon, the question arose, "which functions are only infrequently used?" - A: "Let's take a look at PHP repos on Github!"

After studying Github's Search API, it soon became clear that it's not possible to search all PHP repositories for functions this way. What I had to do was to write a simple crawler that POSTed search queries to the search form on the Github website (while respecting the rate limit, of course).

The results were parsed and saved to a JSON file, and I built a bar chart that visualizes the collected data:

Screenshot of where the findings are presented

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VulnerabilitiesBundle for Symfony2

Only two days after I pushed the first version of my VersionEyeBundle for Symfony2 to GitHub, Fabien Potencier announced SensioLab's new Security Advisories Checker. This service work quite similar to VersionEye, but instead of uploading your composer.json file your composer.lock file is required to figure out which dependencies are really installed - and if there are any known security issues.

VulnerabilitiesBundle for Symfony2 in Web Debug Toolbar
This is what it looks like in the toolbar

SensioLabs have an upload form in the browser, but conveniently offer an API, too. And, of course, the code of their security-checker is on GitHub. So what could be more natural than to add the results of the security check to the Web Profiler Toolbar right next to all the other useful information? Right. I wrote a second bundle, called VulnerabilitiesBundle, that displays security advisories in the toolbar and the profiler view.

VulnerabilitiesBundle for Symfony2 in Profiler
And this is the Profiler page.

Please keep in mind that this is an early development version that is only intended for use in DEV environments (even if it will be stable someday). It just doesn't make sense on production servers. Feel free to fork, test, and report any issues you encounter. Of course, contributions in the form of pull requests, are more than welcome :-)