Musings of a PHPDiversity Rainbow Elephpant

IT’S HAPPENING! Finally, the kickstarter is happening! And I’m ecstatic.

I’d so been hoping that the kickstarter would be launched last Friday, and it felt frustrating when the day ended, and I hadn’t heard anything back from the kickstarter review team. And then I was twiddling my toes all weekend because I knew that I couldn’t do anything until the next working week; but then Monday arrived, and the kickstarter was rejected because of its potential charitable aspects. It was such a disappointment!

But Mark has since reworked it, ensuring that it conforms to all the kickstarter guidelines, and submitted it to appeal; and now I’ve had the good news from kickstarter, and the launch is happening… and I’m so happy again, because it’s the next step in my plans for world domination spreading the Diversity message throughout the worldwide PHP Community.

Promoting Diversity within the worldwide PHP Development Community regardless of race, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, age, nationality, disability, religion and technology.

So the kickstarter campaign is about to go live, and will run until shortly before midnight on December 8th (UTC) and I’m a very happy Elephpant. Here’s the kickstarter link: please help make me a success.

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Musings of a PHPDiversity Rainbow Elephpant

I’M REAL! I’M REAL!

I know that I shouldn’t shout; but I just want to tell the whole world that I’M REAL! I’M HAPPENING! I’M A REAL ELEPHPANT!

When Mark got home from work this evening, he found me sitting in my travelling box, just waiting for him to arrive.

The real Enfys comes face-to-face with her Inspiration

The picture doesn’t really do me justice, the lighting makes me seem darker than I really am (I’m really a bright and cheerful soul), so I’ll sort out some better pictures of me in natural light tomorrow (or over the coming weekend). When I do, you’ll see that I’m a little different to those original photos of me from back in June: the factory clearly took note of Mark’s comments back then; and (even though I do say so myself) I look even better than he’d ever imagine that I would. And (of course) this final prototype me has my PHP logo and my toes.

But the final arrival of the prototype me is just the latest thing to happen. It’s been a very busy week, with all manner of exciting things happening, as the launch of my kickstarter project approaches at a rush.

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PHP Generators – Sending “Gotchas”

If you’re reading this, you’re probably already aware of just how useful PHP’s Generators are for improving performance and/or reducing memory overheads while keeping your code clean and easy to read. We can use a simple foreach() in the main body of our code, as though iterating over an array, but without the overheads of needing to actually build an array. The Generator itself handles a lot of the boilerplate that we’d otherwise have to write, which also means that we create simpler, cleaner code.

Unlike their equivalent in some programming languages, PHP’s Generators allow you to send data into the Generator itself; not simply at initialisation (the arguments that we pass to the Generator when instantiating it); but also between iterations. This has its own uses, and again, allows us to move code from our main blocks and methods into the Generator itself.

Less commonly recognised is that we can combine these two features, creating Generators that can be used to provide data for our main code block and methods, while allowing us to send data to the Generator that can actually modify its behaviour dependent on circumstance.

However, there are a few “gotchas” when we combine Generators that both return and accept data in this way, and it really helps to be aware of them when we’re developing, otherwise it can create problems.

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Musings of a PHPDiversity Rainbow Elephpant

It’s been a long, slow, lazy summer; but it feels as though things are accelerating in my life at the moment as we approach the launch of the PHPDiversity kickstarter. Mark promised himself that he wouldn’t proceed until he had all the costs associated with making me a reality (and knew that I was financially viable), and until he’d held the prototype me in his hands (rather than simply seen photographs of me) to assess that I really was what he’d expected.

Well, he’s been able to put those final figures into his spreadsheets now; and the prototype me is on its way to him even as I type. Assuming that it matches his expectations, he reckons that the kickstarter to make me real will launch toward the end of this month (October) or early November at the latest.

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Words on Diversity from the PHP Rainbow Elephpant

Enfys, the PHP Rainbow Elephpant, is intended to help promote Diversity within the PHP Community: but what exactly is Diversity? What are the benefits of Diversity? And how can Diversity be achieved?

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Musings of a PHPDiversity Rainbow Elephpant

I’m reminded that it has been quite a while since I last posted anything here on Mark’s blog site, and that people might be forgetting about me… but an Elephpant never forgets. I’m still in a fever-pitch of excitement, as I have been ever since I first saw those photographs of the real me. But Elephpants are also patient: when Mark was originally talking about a kickstarter to help fund me into reality, he was expecting it to happen around October. Then the first photographs of me were sent from the factory in China, and he was hopeful that the timescales could be brought forward; but things do seem to have been moving slowly over the Summer, so it’s likely that it will be in October. However, whether it’s in September or October, it is certain that it will be going ahead before very long. All the costings are looking good so far

In the meanwhile, I’ve been keeping myself occupied playing Pokemon Go, and watching the Olympic games. “Citius, Altius, Fortius”, “Faster, Higher, Stronger”… you humans can really achieve quite incredible feats of skill, agility, power and endurance.

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Musings of a PHPDiversity Rainbow Elephpant

“A week is a long time in politics”, apparently. I’m not sure what that means: every time I’ve asked Mark over the last week or so, he’s been reduced almost to tears, mumbling something about “being proud to be a European”, but “no longer allowed to say so out loud”.

But what I do know is that a lot can happen in just one week; and a lot has been happening here, as Mark starts to put together costings and estimates in spreadsheets. The pictures that I posted last week show that it’s technically feasible to create me as a real Elephpant, and prove that there will always be at least one of me. Now he’s putting some numbers and costings together to show whether or not I’m financially viable; and he tells me that it’s all looking good so far, though he needs some more numbers to be certain. And it will need at least 1,200 of me to work, because that’s the minimum run that the factory will do; but I shouldn’t cost much more than any of the other Elephpants out in the world, despite the extra overheads of the colouring process.

That’s all very good news for me. It’s important that there are lots of me all around the world, spreading the Diversity message wherever they find themselves.

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