Syntax checking and code styling
The first group of tools we want to discuss helps us keep our code syntactically correct (i.e., it can be executed correctly by PHP) and formatted in a structured way. It seems to be obvious that the code needs to be written without errors, but it is always good to double-check, as some tools can actively change your code. Having a simple and fast way to ensure this will be essential when we automate the whole code quality process later in this book.
Having your code formatted following a common style guide reduces the effort required to read and understand your code, as well as the code of others. Especially when you are working in a team, an accepted style guide saves you hours of discussions about how to correctly format the code.
We will learn about the following tools:
- A PHP built-in linter
- The PHP CS Fixer tool