Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Laravel 4: Elegant PHP Framework For Web Apps

by TechGameReview  |  in Review at  12:30 PM

Laravel 4 PHP Framework
Laravel is a fast-evolving, PHP-based MVC framework that presents itself as a kind of showcase for current thinking on how best to go about developing web applications. This is a tall order given the current rate of change, but the project seems to be keeping up and even leading the way in one or two areas.

Introducing a more easily testable, modular application structure, improved command line interface and some tweaks to the excellent Eloquent ORM, this fourth edition follows fairly quickly on the heels of version three but is still a pretty significant update. The rapid development cycle may not suit everyone, but Laravel is well worth checking out purely as a lesson in contemporary programming technique. Inversion of Control (loC) is what defines Laravel 4. Essentially, the framework comprises a set of utilities which represent the core application functionality: the command line interface (CLI) interface, ORM, blade templating engine and so on.

Additional functionality is packaged as 'bundles', which can be added to the core as required on a project-by-project basis. In fact, the core functions are themselves bundles so you could if you wished, use something like the Eloquent ORM in a project which otherwise had nothing to do with Laravel.

Because each object has been designed to do its job in isolation, the end result is a powerfully modular system that allows for multiple approaches to particular problems. Dependency being kept to a minimum, systems built from these component objects are more flexible, testable and maintainable

Learning ahead
If you're new to Laravel but familiar with MVC then there's going to be a bit of learning ahead of you. For example, Laravel doesn't enforce the use of a controller but enables a certain amount of work to be done directly within the routes.

If you're new to MVC as well then it's going to be more challenging. That said, the documentation for Laravel is very good. It's comprehensive in a way so few applications are. Learning from a modern, innovative implementation is a smart move.

Web: laravel.com


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