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Lorna Mitchell's Blog: Callbacks in PHP

Note: This article was originally published at PHPDeveloper on 15 February 2011.
PHPDeveloper

Lorna Mitchell has a new post to her blog today looking at a very handy piece of PHP functionality sprinkled around in different functions - using callbacks to handle complicated processing.

Recently I was working on something and I wanted to call an object method as a callback, but got confused when I realised the method had been caused statically. This was caused by my inability to RTFM and I wondered how I'd come so far without actually coming across the many and varied things you can pass into any place a callback is needed.

Besides the normal callback functions you can put in something like call_user_func, she also mentions something a bit more powerful - passing in an array that contains a pointer to an object and a method inside it. This ability allows you to keep your OOP encapsulation intact without having to make global functions. In PHP 5.3, there's even some of the PHP functions that use call backs that will allow you to use closures/anonymous functions without even having to make a separate function.