Making an object-oriented messageboard

Owing to the vast amount of functionality you can cram into something so seemingly simple as a messageboard, it's a prime candidate for object-orientated programming. For example, rather than writing lots of complex code to print out the message index, wouldn't it be much easier to write this:

$mb = new messageboard("general");
$mb->setStyle($mb::StyleThreaded);
$mb->setLimit(50);
$mb->print();

Naturally you need to write all the back-end code to do those things, but you'll find it actually saves you a huge amount of work to program APIs to access your data rather than wading in with custom SQL each time. For example, we could print a summary of new posts in a given messageboard with code like this:

$mb = new messageboard("general");
$mb->setStyle($mb::StyleGuestbook);
$mb->setLimit(5);
$mb->print();

As you can see, we've got a huge amount of code re-use here, which maximises productivity while minimising errors. All the code above was for a non-OOP messageboard, but all you need to do is find the common processes and abstract them to functions in order to convert it - it should take you maybe two hours if you give it a try, but the time savings for maintaining that code make the effort well worth it.

 

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