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Zend_Tool_Framework_Provider represents the functional or "capability" aspect of the framework. Fundamentally, Zend_Tool_Framework_Provider will provide the interfaces necessary to produce "providers", or bits of tooling functionality that can be called and used inside the Zend_Tool_Framework toolchain. The simplistic nature of implementing this provider interface allows the developer a "one-stop-shop" of adding functionality or capabilities to Zend_Tool_Framework.

The provider interface is an empty interface and enforces no methods (this is the Marker Interface pattern):

interface Zend_Tool_Framework_Provider_Interface

Or, if you wish, you can implement the base (or abstract) Provider which will give you access to the Zend_Tool_Framework_Registry:

abstract class Zend_Tool_Framework_Provider_Abstract
implements Zend_Tool_Framework_Provider_Interface,
    public function 
Zend_Tool_Framework_Registry_Interface $registry

Zend Framework