The basics

  • American spelling is preferred for method and variable names. eg, "color" is better than "colour" and "sanitize" is better than "sanitise".
  • Lay your code out as beautifully as you can. We're in favor of beautifiers!
  • Legibility over cleverness please!

Naming conventions

  • Namespaces should be UpperCamelCase, with a matching /UpperCamelCase/ file path
  • Classes should use UpperCamelCase, with a matching UpperCamelCase.php file.
  • All method names should use lower camelCase
  • All variable names should use snake_case.


  • We favor spaces over tabs. Please set your IDE to four spaces per tab.
  • Multiline associative arrays, each item should appear on a new line, indented, e.g:
$var = [
    'example1' => 'value1',
    'example2' => 'value2',


Notice the final comma... adding this makes future updates easier, and less fragile, and so is encouraged.

  • Switch and cases should also be embedded, with a space after each switch and case, e.g.:
switch ($var) {
    case 'example1':
    case 'example2':
  • In general, when in doubt, space it out.

Error handling

  • Notice errors are errors, please develop your code with pedantic_mode = true; set in your config.ini
  • Unless there's a VERY good reason you can explain, never use the '@' error suppression operator.


We like comments, and when in doubt, you probably should write a comment! That doesn't mean writing a comment for every line, but we'd like to know your thought process behind what you wrote, and why you did something a certain way.

This will help future developers, maybe even you, so be kind to your future self!

PHP doc blocks:

Use PHP doc blocks for every method, except inherited methods, where they are optional. Use your best judgment here.

  • Explain the purpose of the method or class as clearly as you can. For example, "loads ClassName by property_name" is bad; "loads objects that have a property called property_name" is much better.
  • Explain what object properties are, and what they're for.
  • "Just read the code" isn't a good idea, and we don't like it.
  • That said, clear, simple code is good :)

PHP tags

  • Open your PHP blocks with <?php, and close with ?>
  • Shorthand <?= is ok in templates
  • You should never end your .php file with ?>, as this leads to fragile code.