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More solutions for idle CPU time.

Wonky Code

Yesterday we had a great example of how to make sure your database isn't slacking off. Here's a example to make sure your web server keeps working hard too.

Also thanks to everybody who submitted a WTF. Keep them coming! :)

if( $_USER['uid'] > 1 )
$usermenu = new Template( $_CONF['path_layout'] );
$usermenu->set_file( array( 'option' => 'useroption.thtml',
'current' => 'useroption_off.thtml' ));
$usermenu->set_var( 'site_url', $_CONF['site_url'] );
$usermenu->set_var( 'layout_url', $_CONF['layout_url'] );
strong>$usermenu->set_var( 'block_name', str_replace( '_', '-', 'user_block' ));</strong>

        if( empty(
$title ))
$title = DB_getItem( $_TABLES['blocks'], 'title', "name='user_block'" );

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While not as extreme as yesterdays, it still begs the question, why? Why call a replace function on a hard-coded string?? The only explanation I think of is that the literal string used to be a variable and when it became a literal, the person that made the code change didn't strip out the function. Perhaps it was the victim of a global search & replace?

That's how you make your programs look more complicated than they are. :)

I've seen the light! From now on, I will always write code like the following:

Oh great, it ate the beautiful PHP code I wrote.

Here we go again!

message$ = 'Hey loser, pissing us off again?';
message$ = str_replace('off', 'you');
message$ = str_replace('loser', 'Dear Visitor');
message$ = str_replace('?', '.');
message$ = str_replace('us', 'see');
message$ = str_replace('Hey', 'Hello,');
message$ = str_replace('pissing', 'it's nice to');
echo message$;

Oh man, what happened to all those dollar signs? O_o

Anyways, here is a little improvement. Where it says:

echo $message;

It should say:

echo "$message";

It's too easy for the server to just print the variable. It must do variable substitution!

P.S.: I've seen lots of echo instructions like the latter in code written by beginners. ^_^

I've done worse.

I remember looking back at some old code of mine from when I was just learning php, and finding the following.

html here...

more html...


html here...
{?php echo "foo"; ?}
more html...

Imagine the curly braces are the normal angle brackets.

Maybe it's a bug and the line should be
$usermenu->set_var( 'block_name', str_replace( '_', '-', $_CONF['user_block'] ));
instead of the above.

Maybe he is trying for consistency in a weird way. Perhaps he has to integrate back-end variable names that contain dashes instead of underscores. For consistency, he uses underscores everywhere so that search/replace still works and he doesn't have to worry about making a change in he code that won't get reflected in the backend and vice-versa.

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