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In PHP, what are magic methods and how are they used?

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In PHP, what are magic methods and how are they used?
posted Jun 18, 2015 by Vrije Mani Upadhyay

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1 Answer

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PHP functions that start with a double underscore – a “__” – are called magic functions (and/or methods) in PHP. They are functions that are always defined inside classes, and are not stand-alone (outside of classes) functions.

The magic functions available in PHP are:

answer Jun 22, 2015 by Manikandan J
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+2 votes

I have been looking at my copy of the php manual, at magic constants and have a question about two of them.

1: __line__ : I presume that this would be irrelevant if a script file was compressed by removing all the superfluous white space, including line breaks and tabs? (Although since php is not exposed to the client unless the developer uses highlight_file or highlight_string, compressing it this way is not too useful)

2: __trait__: This is the first time I have run into this term in a programming context. What does it mean? In the manual there is an associative reference to namespace. Perhaps I should read up on namespaces relative to php. The only other context I am aware of the term is in XML This is a bit confusing because I have seen the term used referring to object/property relationships, such as in javascript.

Specifically, you can create an object through the use of a constructor function

function SomeJSObj()
   this.introduce = function(a)
    alert('Hi, I am '+a)

var guy = new SomeJSObj()

guy.introduce('Max') // -> alert dialog -> "Hi, I am Max"

So the function/property 'introduce' is namespaced by the object guy.

So, how is it different than a member function or variable of a class that can only be accessed via reference to an object instance?

Then, finally, how does the term inferred by __trait__ relate?

+1 vote

I am working on an OOP project, and cannot decide which way to follow when I have to write a simple function.

For example, I want to write a function which generates a random string. In an OOP environtment, it is a matter of course to create a static class and a static method for that. But why? Isn't it more elegant, if I implement such a simple thing as a plain function? Not to mention that a function is more efficient than a class method.

So, in object-oriented programming, what is the best practice to implement such a simple function?