Using the Event component



One of the uber-tools components is the event handling system. This is a very lightweight set of classes you can use in your code to create event-based systems. Using events in your code helps keep components loosely coupled, extensible and maintainable. It's a great way to create a plugin system.

Registering events or hooks in your code

Registering an event in your code simply involves assigning a unique string to given point in the execution flow. If you use a front controller or single entry point into your code, you can register most events in this class.

Examples of event names could be core.afterRouting or module.beforeSave

Attaching listeners to the events

Events can be associated with listeners. That means every time the event fires, the listener or listeners will be invoked. Let's use the term plugin to describe any object listening to an event.

In your application setup or bootstrap class you'll want to register all the configured plugins with event hooks.

$disp->addEventListener('core.afterRouting', new SGL2_Task_LoadController());
$disp->addEventListener('core.afterRouting', new SGL2_Task_CreateSession());

Listeners can be actions or filters

Your plugins can do one of 2 things, either:

  • invoke code that performs some action
  • invoke code that transforms some input and returns it

Example of an Action plugin

This plugin creates a session and adds it to the registry

class SGL2_Task_CreateSession extends Uber_Plugin_Abstract
    public function handleEvent(Uber_Event $e, $data = null)
        SGL2_Registry::set('session', new SGL2_Session());

Example of a Filter plugin

This plugin capitalises some text

class Xmpl_Plugin_Foo extends Uber_Plugin_Abstract
    public function handleEvent(Uber_Event $e, $data = null)
        if (! is_null($data)) {
            $txt = $data->get();
            $newData = strtoupper($txt);

Triggering events

Now that you have your events setup, and the relevant plugins listening to them, all that remains is to invoke the event.

    new SGL2_Event($this, 'core.afterRouting')

We fetch the event dispatcher from the Registry, and simply trigger the event, with $this as the first argument, in case the plugin needs to know something about the caller. With this single call, *all* plugins listening to the event will be invoked.

Triggering events with parameters

Let's say you have a plugin that sets up a database. You want to reuse it for all your projects so only the parameters needs to change. Here is an example of how to do that.

    new SGL2_Event($this, 'core.beforeRouting', array(
        'dbName' => SGL2_Config::get(''),
        'dbUser' => SGL2_Config::get('db.user'),
        'dbPass' => SGL2_Config::get('db.pass'),

So the optional third argument to SGL2_Event is a dictionary of parameters. Here's how the plugin reads them:

class SGL2_Task_SetupDb extends Uber_Plugin_Abstract
    public function handleEvent(Uber_Event $e, $data = null)
        $params = $e->getParameters();
        $dbName = $params['dbName'];
        $dbUser = $params['dbUser'];

Triggering events that perform filtering

If you want your plugin to transform data, just pass a context object that implements getData and setData

$ctx = new Xmpl_Context();
$ctx->set('my_prop', 'this is some text');
$e = $disp->triggerEvent(new Xmpl_Event($this, 'core.anEvent'), $ctx);        

Note that the context object is the 2nd argument of the triggerEvent method.

See *Example of a Filter plugin* above to see how the plugin transforms the data.

Cancelling events

Sometimes a number of listeners are registered to an event like user.onLogin. But if login fails, you want the execution chain for those plugins to be halted. All you have to do is cancel the event

class Xmpl_Plugin_Cancel extends Uber_Plugin_Abstract
    public function handleEvent(Uber_Event $e, $data = null)
        // do something
        $userLogin = $e->getSubject();
        if ($userLogin->failed()) {
        //  then in subsequent listeners
        if (!$e->isCancelled()) {
            // record login datetime

Global events

You can easily add a single plugin to all events in the system, like a logger.

* tbd

Callback listeners

Sometimes you will have an object that contains your business logic, but does not implement Uber_Plugin_Abstract. Simply use the callback listener.

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