SunshinePHP 2019

Variable functions

PHP supports the concept of variable functions. This means that if a variable name has parentheses appended to it, PHP will look for a function with the same name as whatever the variable evaluates to, and will attempt to execute it. Among other things, this can be used to implement callbacks, function tables, and so forth.

Variable functions won't work with language constructs such as echo, print, unset(), isset(), empty(), include, require and the like. Utilize wrapper functions to make use of any of these constructs as variable functions.

Example #1 Variable function example

<?php
function foo() {
    echo 
"In foo()<br />\n";
}

function 
bar($arg '')
{
    echo 
"In bar(); argument was '$arg'.<br />\n";
}

// This is a wrapper function around echo
function echoit($string)
{
    echo 
$string;
}

$func 'foo';
$func();        // This calls foo()

$func 'bar';
$func('test');  // This calls bar()

$func 'echoit';
$func('test');  // This calls echoit()
?>

Object methods can also be called with the variable functions syntax.

Example #2 Variable method example

<?php
class Foo
{
    function 
Variable()
    {
        
$name 'Bar';
        
$this->$name(); // This calls the Bar() method
    
}
    
    function 
Bar()
    {
        echo 
"This is Bar";
    }
}

$foo = new Foo();
$funcname "Variable";
$foo->$funcname();  // This calls $foo->Variable()

?>

When calling static methods, the function call is stronger than the static property operator:

Example #3 Variable method example with static properties

<?php
class Foo
{
    static 
$variable 'static property';
    static function 
Variable()
    {
        echo 
'Method Variable called';
    }
}

echo 
Foo::$variable// This prints 'static property'. It does need a $variable in this scope.
$variable "Variable";
Foo::$variable();  // This calls $foo->Variable() reading $variable in this scope.

?>

As of PHP 5.4.0, you can call any callable stored in a variable.

Example #4 Complex callables

<?php
class Foo
{
    static function 
bar()
    {
        echo 
"bar\n";
    }
    function 
baz()
    {
        echo 
"baz\n";
    }
}

$func = array("Foo""bar");
$func(); // prints "bar"
$func = array(new Foo"baz");
$func(); // prints "baz"
$func "Foo::bar";
$func(); // prints "bar" as of PHP 7.0.0; prior, it raised a fatal error
?>

See also is_callable(), call_user_func(), variable variables and function_exists().

Istoricul schimbărilor

Versiune Descriere
7.0.0 'ClassName::methodName' is allowed as variable function.
5.4.0 Arrays, which are valid callables, are allowed as variable functions.

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User Contributed Notes 3 notes

up
11
Anonymous
7 years ago
$ wget http://www.php.net/get/php_manual_en.tar.gz/from/a/mirror
$ grep -l "\$\.\.\." php-chunked-xhtml/function.*.html

List of functions that accept variable arguments.
<?php
array_diff_assoc
()
array_diff_key()
array_diff_uassoc()
array()
array_intersect_ukey()
array_map()
array_merge()
array_merge_recursive()
array_multisort()
array_push()
array_replace()
array_replace_recursive()
array_unshift()
call_user_func()
call_user_method()
compact()
dba_open()
dba_popen()
echo()
forward_static_call()
fprintf()
fscanf()
httprequestpool_construct()
ibase_execute()
ibase_set_event_handler()
ibase_wait_event()
isset()
list()
maxdb_stmt_bind_param()
maxdb_stmt_bind_result()
mb_convert_variables()
newt_checkbox_tree_add_item()
newt_grid_h_close_stacked()
newt_grid_h_stacked()
newt_grid_v_close_stacked()
newt_grid_v_stacked()
newt_win_choice()
newt_win_entries()
newt_win_menu()
newt_win_message()
newt_win_ternary()
pack()
printf()
register_shutdown_function()
register_tick_function()
session_register()
setlocale()
sprintf()
sscanf()
unset()
var_dump()
w32api_deftype()
w32api_init_dtype()
w32api_invoke_function()
wddx_add_vars()
wddx_serialize_vars()
?>
up
-7
josh at joshstroup dot xyz
2 years ago
A small, but helpful note. If you are trying to call a static function from a different namespace, you must use the fully qualified namespace, even if they have the same top level namespace(s). For example if you have the following class to call:

<?php
namespace Project\TestClass;
class
Test {
    static function
funcToCall() {
        return
"test";
    }
}
?>
You must call it as:
<?php
namespace Project\OtherTestClass;
class
OtherTest {
    static function
callOtherFunc() {
       
$func = '\Project\TestClass::funcToCall';
       
$func();
    }
}
?>
and not:
<?php
class OtherTest {
    static function
callOtherFunc() {
       
$func = 'TestClass::funcToCall';
       
$func();
    }
}
?>
up
-12
boards at gmail dot com
12 years ago
If you want to call a static function (PHP5) in a variable method:

Make an array of two entries where the 0th entry is the name of the class to be invoked ('self' and 'parent' work as well) and the 1st entry is the name of the function.  Basically, a 'callback' variable is either a string (the name of the function) or an array (0 => 'className', 1 => 'functionName').

Then, to call that function, you can use either call_user_func() or call_user_func_array().  Examples:

<?php
class A {

  protected
$a;
  protected
$c;

  function
__construct() {
   
$this->a = array('self', 'a');
   
$this->c = array('self', 'c');
  }

  static function
a($name, &$value) {
    echo
$name,' => ',$value++,"\n";
  }

  function
b($name, &$value) {
   
call_user_func_array($this->a, array($name, &$value));
  }

  static function
c($str) {
    echo
$str,"\n";
  }

  function
d() {
   
call_user_func_array($this->c, func_get_args());
  }

  function
e() {
   
call_user_func($this->c, func_get_arg(0));
  }

}

class
B extends A {

  function
__construct() {
   
$this->a = array('parent', 'a');
   
$this->c = array('self', 'c');
  }

  static function
c() {
   
print_r(func_get_args());
  }

  function
d() {
   
call_user_func_array($this->c, func_get_args());
  }

  function
e() {
   
call_user_func($this->c, func_get_args());
  }

}

$a =& new A;
$b =& new B;
$i = 0;

A::a('index', $i);
$a->b('index', $i);

$a->c('string');
$a->d('string');
$a->e('string');

# etc.
?>
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