PHP Tutorial: foreach() lock there is a key

PHP Tutorial: foreach() lock there is a key

When programming in PHP you will often find yourself using arrays. But what if you have a large array, with 50 items? How can you access the data stored in it without having to type each key? You can send the array through a foreach(). What a foreach() does is executes a block of code for each item in an array. There are two ways to use a foreach(), once is to use only the values, and the other is to use both keys and values. I’ll start with the values only way.

/* our array */
$media = array('Vinyl','8-Track','Cassette','Compact Disc');
?>My Favourite media types are:<ol><?php
/* so foreach item in $media, give the $value */
foreach ( $media as $value ) {
    echo "<li>$value</li>\n";

This should yield:

My Favourite media types are:

   1. Vinyl
   2. 8-Track
   3. Cassette
   4. Compact Disc

“Ok Mike, got it, but what about my keys?” Right, keys, well using your keys in a foreach() is also a very common method. Here is how it is done:

/* our array */
$media = array(
4=>'Compact Disc');
?>My Favourite media types are:<br /><?php
/* so foreach item in $media, give me the 
key as $key and the value as $value */
foreach($media as $key => $value) {
    echo "$key: $value<br />\n";

This should yield:

My Favourite media types are:
1: Vinyl
2: 8-Track
3: Cassette
4: Compact Disc

Now, obviously this is a very simple example, but it gives you the basics how to to initiate a foreach() loop. I hope you found this useful.

By Mike on March 29, 2011 | PHP, Tutorials
Tags: , , ,

PHP Tutorial: Arrays mapping your mind in PHP

According to the PHP manual:

An array in PHP is actually an ordered map. A map is a type that associates values to keys. This type is optimized for several different uses; it can be treated as an array, list (vector), hash table (an implementation of a map), dictionary, collection, stack, queue, and probably more. As array values can be other arrays, trees and multidimensional arrays are also possible.

Uh…. ok, so what does that all mean? Well I’ll start with the part where it said “associates values to keys.” As you should already know all variables in PHP must have a value, whether it is NULL, empty, an array, an integer, whatever. So in the case of an array inside the array there are keys, these keys are like identifiers for the values contained in the array. Here is an example:

$variable = array('key'=>'value');

So to explain the above code: the variable named $variable is an array, it has one key=>value pair, the key is key and the value is value. So, to use this new value we would simply make a call like this:

echo $variable['key'];

The names of keys can be integers, or strings. If you do not set a key, PHP will set one for you. For example:

/* PHP will automatically set the key for the value Apples to 0 */
$fruit = array('Apples');
/* another way to assign values into an array is like this: */
$veggies[] = 'Lettuce';
$veggies[1] = 'Broccoli';
/* so $veggies contains two key=>value pairs, one is 0=>'Lettuce', 
                                    and the other is 1=>'Broccoli' 
To use these values, we can simply do an echo, like this: */
echo "I like to eat {$veggies[0]} and {$veggies[1]} with every meal.";

Now, keys don’t always have to be one or the other, you and mix and match all you’d like:

$breads[1] = 'Whole Wheat';
$breads['one'] = 'Light Rye';

So there you have it, a simple and straight-forward look at arrays in PHP. I hope you found it useful!

By Mike on March 26, 2011 | PHP, Tutorials
Tags: , , , ,