I’m proud of writing elegant code that can be easily read and intuitively understood. I use whitespace to increase my code’s readability, and I utilize simple, specialized programming language constructs to make my code more concise. For example, I’ll use PHP’s foreach construct, instead of a traditional for loop, to eliminate unnecessary indexers. This construct can also be found in Java, C#, Perl, as well as other programming languages. I also frequently use a PHP idiom, which I have never used in other languages, that allows for the convenient addition of elements into an array.
Because PHP features nonessential elements such as the array append operator, I am irked by PHP’s lack of a more useful feature: function overloading. The popular approach of appending a formal argument’s type to a function name is bothersome and inconvenient. The scheme begins to deteriorate source code aesthetics when the functions that require overloading accept more than one argument. Additionally, calling functionName($objectOfTypeA) and functionName($objectOfTypeB) is clearly more elegant than having to call functionNameTYPEA($objectOfTypeA) and functionNameTYPEB($objectOfTypeB). Function overloading would allow people to use a consistent interface, while allowing the implementation of a function to vary depending on the number and types of supplied arguments. Surely, there must be a way that type hints can be exploited to implement this much needed feature.