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Nikita Popov: Are PHP developers functophobic?

Note: This article was originally published at PHPDeveloper on 14 August 2012.
PHPDeveloper

In his most recent post Nikita Popov asks if PHP developers are functophobic - that, in some of his experience, they don't like to use functions.

Now, that was overly general, so let me clarify: PHP developers who have reached a certain degree of sophistication basically stop using plain functions - instead everything goes all classes and methods. At least that's the observation I made when looking at various open-source libraries and frameworks. The only type of function you'll find in any of the "high-quality" libs are anonymous functions. But that's pretty much it.

He shares concern that this "anti-function" approach can cause some bad practices to come up, specifically when developers try to force things into OOP that don't need to be there. He suggests that "helper functions" are a perfect example of individual functions that might not need to go in a class. He notes that, unlike in other languages (like Python), PHP development tends to follow the "one class, one file" route. He wonders if a shift from this method and more to a "module" approach (a more "compact" method) could be a good thing.