Frankfurt AWS Region Now Available on Engine Yard

We are happy to announce the Frankfurt AWS region is now available for all Engine Yard customers. This region currently supports all C3, M3, R3, and T2 instances.

You can now tailor your application delivery to your European clients by complementing the Ireland facility with Frankfurt. On top of all of the latency benefits you gain by having a data center closer to your customers, you can also keep all of your data within Germany and comply with the EU Data Protection Directive, also known as Directive 95/46/EC. AWS provides a detailed explanation of how compliance works in this region.

As always, Engine Yard is committed to conducting business in a manner that complies with the US–EU Safe Harbor Framework and the US–Swiss Safe Harbor Framework. More details can be found in our EU Safe Harbor Policy.

If you are interested in utilizing this setup or want additional information, please contact our Customer Success team.

Sign up for a free trial with Engine Yard today to try out this new region.

What to Expect When You're Expecting: PHP 7, Part 2

This is part two in our Expecting PHP 7 miniseries. Read part one.

As you probably already know, PHP 7 is a thing, and it’s coming this year! Which makes this as good a time as any to go over what’s new and improved.

In the first part of this series, we looked at the some of the most important inconsistency fixes coming up in PHP 7 as well as two of the biggest new features. In this post, we take a look another six big features to land in PHP 7 that you’ll want to know about.

Unicode Codepoint Escape Syntax

The addition of a new escape character, \u, allows us to specify Unicode character code points (in hexidecimal) unambiguously inside PHP strings:

The syntax used is \u{CODEPOINT}, for example the green heart, 💚, can be expressed as the PHP string: "\u{1F49A}".

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Cloud in My Coffee - Episode 2 with Davey Shafik

As promised, it's time for your monthly dose of “Cloud in My Coffee”, the monthly video series from the Engine Yard Community Team. This video series features interviews with many of the people that make Engine Yard what it is every day. From the “C” level executives to those working the tickets on our Support Team, you’ll have the opportunity to get to know the Yardees around the world, all from the comfort of your seat, cup of coffee close at hand.

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What to Expect When You're Expecting: PHP 7, Part 1

This is part one in our Expecting PHP 7 miniseries. Read part two.

As many of you are probably aware, the RFC I mentioned in my PHP 5.0.0 timeline passed with PHP 7 being the agreed upon name for the next major version of PHP.

Regardless of your feelings on this topic, PHP 7 is a thing, and it’s coming this year! With the RFC for the PHP 7.0 Timeline passing almost unanimously (32 to 2), we have now entered into feature freeze, and we’ll see the first release candidate (RC) appearing in mid June.

But what does this mean for you? We have seen a huge reluctance of web hosts to move towards newer versions of 5.x. Won’t a major version bring huge backwards compatibility breaks and make that move even slower?

The answer to that is: it depends. So keep reading.

A number of language edge cases have been cleaned up. Additionally, both performance and inconsistency fixes have been major focuses for this release.

Let’s get into the details.

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Seven Unusual Ruby Datastores

Admit it: you like the unusual. We all do. Despite constant warnings against premature optimization, an emphasis on "readable code", and the old aphorism, "keep it simple, stupid", we just can't help ourselves. As programmers, we love exploring new things.

In that spirit, let's go on an adventure. In this post, we'll take a look at seven lesser-known ways to store data in the Ruby language.

The Ones We Already Know

Before we get started, we'll set a baseline. What are the ways to store data in Ruby that we use every day? Well, these are the ones that come to mind for me: string, array, hash, CSV, JSON, and the filesystem.

We can skip all of these.

So what are some of the other ways to store data in Ruby? Let's find out.

Struct

What Is It?

A struct is a way of bundling together a group of variables under a single name. If you've done any C programming, you've probably come across structs before.

A struct is similar to a class. At its most basic, it's a group of bundled attributes with accessor methods. You can also define methods that instances of the struct will respond to.

In Ruby, structs inherit from Enumerable, so they come with all kinds of great behavior, like to_a, each, map, and member access with [].

You can define a struct object by setting a constant equal to Struct.new and passing in some default attribute names. From there, you can create any number of instances of the struct, passing in attribute values for that instance.

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