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An Introduction into Event Loops in PHP

PHP developers are always waiting for something. Sometimes we’re waiting for requests to remote services. Sometimes we’re waiting for databases to return rows from a complex query. Wouldn’t it be great if we could do other things during all that waiting?

If you’ve written some JS, you’re probably familiar with callbacks and DOM events. And though we have callbacks in PHP, they don’t work in quite the same way. That’s thanks to a feature called the event loop.


We’re going to look at how the event loop works, and how we can use the event loop in PHP.

We’re going to see some interesting PHP libraries. Some would consider these not yet stable enough to use in production. Some would consider the examples presented as “better to do in more mature languages”. There are good reasons to try these things. There are also good reasons to avoid these things in production. The purpose of this post is to highlight what’s possible in PHP.

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