Tag Archives: Object-oriented Programming

Designing a system: WordPress routing

Developers use WordPress to build all sorts of solutions. They can range from a small website to large application platforms. The larger the project gets, the more common it is to have the need for WordPress to handle custom URLs.

You might want to map a custom URL to a new template, a specific hook or both. These situations get more and more common as you work on larger WordPress projects. This type of problem is a bit of a growing up pain with WordPress.

In framework land, there’s a tool that helps you with that problem. It’s called the routing system. It’s a critical component of most frameworks. It lets you map URLs with different parts of your application.

It’s a tough problem to solve, but a good example of object-oriented design. That’s why we’re going to build one. It’ll show you how object-oriented programming helps you solve harder problems.

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Why can’t you learn object-oriented programming?

As you lay there, you try to remember how you got into this mess. It seemed like it was going to be so easy. You’d heard that object-oriented programming was worth learning. That’s what some dude (or wizard!) told you anyhow.

Next thing you knew, everyone else was convinced. There was no time! You had to get ready for battle. You had to study your enemy: object-oriented programming.

You were lucky though. Your enemy was well known. You had articles, tutorial series, videos that were a quick Google search away. If that wasn’t enough, you could take classes, workshops or even bootcamps.

You thought, “There is a way to slay the beast!”. Your energy and your motivation had never been higher. You yelled to the heavens, “I shall slay you OOP beast. Your time has come! Charge!!!”.

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Thoughts on WordPress and the MVC pattern

Getting proficient with object-oriented programming can feel like falling down a rabbit hole. You break down problems into more and more classes. You feel like it’s neverending and that you could go on forever. You need guidance to make sense of it all.

This is where architectural patterns come in. They’re similar to software design patterns which you use to solve a specific problem. In contrast, you use an architectural pattern to address a set of them at once.

This confers certain benefits to architectural patterns. You get a higher level view of how your classes interact with each other. You then have an easier time piecing everything together.

This is why it’s not uncommon for developers to skip over software design patterns. Instead, they start looking into architectural patterns right away. This is even something I’m guilty of doing (insert audience gasp).

One of the most important architectural patterns is the “model-view-controller” (known as MVC). It’s used by most modern frameworks from Rails to Angular. But does it have a place in WordPress?

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Designing a class around WordPress hooks

Have you met this “Carl” guy? He’s always blabbing about “object-oriented this” and “object-oriented that”. You decide to dip your toes into the subject (maybe he’s on to something…).

You try to apply a subset of what he teaches by creating a class. You start to code it. Life is good. And then it happens. You need to use a WordPress hook.

What do you with them?

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Saving WordPress custom post types using an interface

Custom post types are a powerful WordPress functionality. Everyone that works with WordPress long enough ends up using them. A custom post type can be anything. That flexibility is the source of much of its power. When using custom post type, you’re only limited by your imagination (trademark pending).

This flexibility also makes it a great use case for designing an interface. This article will put you in the interface creator seat. Exciting, I know!

As the interface creator, you’re in charge of designing the interface contract. This means that you get to dictate how someone use your interface (insert evil laughter here). It’s not all (evil) roses though.

The job gives you quite a lot of responsibility. This can make it hard for you to know where to start or what to do. Lucky for you, that’s what this article will help you with.

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Helping WordPress make friends with the decorator pattern

In some plugin circles (also know as the “cool kids club”), the coolest kid on the block is the wpdb class. Plugins go out of their way to be his friend. Lucky guy (or class)!

One plugin that has to be friends with wpdb is HyperDB. If plugins could talk, it would sound a lot like a scene from kindergarden.

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Spying on WordPress with the proxy pattern

In a not so distant future, you’ve grown to be quite the WordPress expert. You work for WSIS (WordPress Security Intelligence Service) as an analyst. You’re given your first field mission.

You have to get in deep with WordPress. You need to get intimate information about a WordPress object. Information even WordPress doesn’t want to give you. You need to gain access without detection. The last thing you need is WordPress to know you’re listening to things.

How would your future self do it? Well, he’d use the proxy pattern (good thing you’re reading this article). The proxy pattern is the equivalent of object-oriented tapping. It’s one way to solve the problem of interacting with a class without it being aware of it.

Let’s look at how it works.

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Designing a class: WordPress AJAX handler

Learning object-oriented programming has its fair share of challenges. One of them is the large variety of problems and their solutions. That’s why a lot of solutions revolve around using design patterns.

Sometimes a problem has a clear solution like the WordPress API client. Other times it’s more abstract like how to interact with the plugin API. These abstract problems are a lot harder to define and solve.

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Singletons and their use in WordPress

Today is one of those WordPress days. You’re sitting down at your computer. You’ve got a plugin you want to write. You’ve heard that object-oriented programming is pretty awesome so you want to use it (obviously).

You create your plugin folder. You add your empty “index.php” (right?). You create your “WP_Kickass_Plugin” class in “kickass-plugin.php”. Sweet, you’re in business. Time to get into the meat of things.

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