Hi, I'm Liam

I'm a full-stack software developer that loves working with PHP, JavaScript, Laravel and Vue.

Here you can find my latest blog posts as well as any useful tips & tricks, opinions, or other miscellaneous things I might share.

A Look At PHP's isset()

by Liam Hammett · 9 minute read · #php

isset() is one of the most important tools at your disposal to validate data in PHP. Like the name implies, it is designed to verify if a variable given to it is set, returning a boolean value based on the result.

However, it has some quirks and behaviours that are very much worth knowing as they can easily catch out even experienced developers.

Let’s take a look through how it behaves and what’s so special about it. Even if you’re a veteran PHP developer, hopefully, you’ll pick up something new here.

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PHP Wishlist: Typing

by Liam Hammett · 10 minute read · #php #wishlist

PHP is a loosely typed language. It doesn’t care what types you throw around. Unless you want it to care.

The language has come a long way in the last several years to bring in a robust type system, allowing developers to enforce types in both function parameters and what a function’s return value is.

For everything else, there’s docblocks, ugly sanitisation and assertion code, and crossing your fingers to hope your function’s API holds up in practice.

Read more…

Supercharge GitHub.com with Browser Extensions

by Liam Hammett · 6 minute read · #github #browser-extensions

As a commercial software developer, my day-to-day work for the last several years has involved working on closed-source software on private GitLab and BitBucket repositories, but that doesn’t mean GitHub has become a stranger to me.

I still spend a good portion of each week on the GitHub website, both for hosting my own personal repositories and looking into open source projects’ code, issues and documentation.

GitHub’s user experience is already pretty great and has only been getting better and better since Microsoft purchased it last year. That said, there are still a few things that are a bit lacklustre and could be improved — but that’s where browser extensions come in!

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HTML's <button type="reset"> behaviour

· #tweet #html

TailwindCSS <details> plugin

· #open-source #tweet #tailwind

I built a nice looking and fully accessible dropdown menu by using the native <details> HTML tag without a drop of JavaScript in the client.

To build it in a utility-first approach, I created a simple plugin for TailwindCSS.

You can find the plugin over at GitHub.

If Your Blog Doesn't Have an RSS Feed, Don't Have a Blog

by Liam Hammett · 2 minute read · #opinion #blogs

It’s becoming increasingly common lately that people I want to follow are rolling out their very own blog platforms, in an effort to move away from WordPress and centralised platforms like Medium.com.

That’s perfectly commendable, and it often has some fascinating results, but there’s one thing that I come across all the time that destroys people’s chance of me reading their newer content — no RSS feeds.

I use Feedly as my daily RSS reader, and it keeps me up-to-date with hundreds of blogs so I can skim over them and pick out the titles I do want to read. I don’t read every article that comes into it, but I still get to enjoy the content that I like from a variety of writers.

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Make Infinite Gmail Addresses For One Inbox

by Liam Hammett · 3 minute read · #productivity

Google’s Gmail allows people to get a free email account—but it seems that a lot of people aren’t aware that this gives you access to almost unlimited unique email addresses that will all point to the same inbox, just by making a couple of simple tweaks to it.

Here’s how you can make use of this yourself:

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My MacOS Shortcuts

by Liam Hammett · 6 minute read · #macos #productivity

I use shortcuts on my devices all the time. Shortcuts are great, they let you perform complex actions in a fraction of the time — time that adds up a lot over time when you’re using the device for 10 hours a day.

In this post, I’ll be going over some of the typical shortcuts I have set up and use on a daily basis, and some of the applications I use to get them working.

Popups & Modals

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Laravel Blade Helpers

by Liam Hammett · 3 minute read · #open-source #laravel

Laravel’s Blade templating engine offers a ton of convenient directives you can use to make your view files beautiful and abstract anything that may be too complex or verbose to live inside HTML. It even gives a really handy way to add your own custom directives using the Blade::directive(…) method.

However, the callback in custom directives only receives a single parameter - the raw string expression from the view file. It seems to be rare that developers actually parse the contents of the expression itself within the directive, opting instead to pass the entire expression as arguments to a helper function or a method on another class. For example:

BladeHelper::directive('uppercase', function($expression) {
    return "<?php echo strtoupper($expression); ?>";
});

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Black Friday 2018 Deals for Laravel Developers

by Liam Hammett · 6 minute read · #laravel

It’s that time of the year again, and over the next few days there will be some awesome deals in all sorts of areas - retail and tech especially. As a Laravel developer, there’s a lot of goodies to get your hands on for some insanely discounted prices!

Here I’ll try to sum up some of the great deals you might want to get your hands on.

Laravel Nova - 30% off

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