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While Anthony Ferrara’s Backwards Compatibility Is For Suckers starts off as mostly flame bait, he does bring up one important issue: forward compatibility.
The PHP example he cites is the new password_hash function. It looks like this:password_hash( $password, $algo, array $options = array() );
Currently $options supports two values: salt and cost. The forward compatibility part is that new values can be added to $options without having to change the function signature.
This is the best you can do with PHP right now, which is a bummer. The (much) better solution would be to have named parameter support. Use Python as the reference for this. No more hiding parameters in an opaque options array, instead expose all of them in the function signature.
Until PHP has proper named parameter support we’ll have to continue the awkward use of arrays to hide current and future optional parameters.
I’ve tried a few different feed reader options in the run up to the close of Google Reader. I really wanted to like Feedly, but there were two main issues. The one that I noticed first is that it didn’t work well for my reading style. The second issue that came up became a deal breaker, there was no way to export my list of subscriptions.
Eventually I landed at The Old Reader. Their UI better fit my reading style and I can export my feed list as an OPML file.
The Old Reader isn’t perfect. There are some UI elements that are a bit clunky. But over all my reading experience in The Old Reader was better than Feedly.
I may try other alternatives again as things continue to improve and settle in the reader market (post Google Reader).