Take advantage of new features

Lots of functionality gets added to PHP all the time, and yet few people seem to be taking advantage of it. How would you, for example, read the contents of a file into a string? Like this?

$contents = implode("\n", file("test.txt"))

If so, you are using code that was considered very fast before PHP 4.3 was released. However, in PHP 4.3 a new function was introduced called file_get_contents(), that takes a filename as its first parameter and returns as a string the entire contents of the file. It is very fast as it is very optimised, and neatly solves a problem that people have had to implement for themselves.

If you have not done so recently, take a good look through the PHP manual to see what is changed - lots of functions were added in 4.3, and many more in 5.0 so make sure you give your scripts a freshen up to take advantage of the latest features.


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