#Suphle Rant 3: Road to PHP8, Flow travails

Some primer: Flows is a feature that causes the framework to bypass handling the request now but read it from cache. This cache entry is meant to be populated without warming, based on the preceding request. It's sort of like prefetching but done on the back end

While building Suphle, I made some notes on some chapters about caveats and gotchas I may forget while documenting. One such note was that when users make the Flow request, the framework will attempt to determine who user is, using authentication mechanism defined on the first module (of the modular monolith)

Now, I got to this point during documentation and started wondering whether it's impossible for the originating request to have used a different authentication mechanism, which would result in an empty entry for returning user. I *think* it's possible cuz I've got something else called "route mirroring", where web based routes can be converted to API routes. They'll then return JSON, get served under defined API path, use JWT, all automatically. But I just couldn't connect the dots for the life of me, regarding how any of this could impact authentication on the Flow request

While trying to figure out how to write the test for this or whether it was even necessary (since I had no use case), it struck me that since Flow requests are not triggered by an actual user, any code attempting to read authenticated user will see nothing!

I HATE it when I realize there's ambiguity or an oversight, after the amount of attention and suffering devoted. This, along with a chain of personal troubles set off despondency for a couple of days. No appetite for food or talk. Grudgingly refactored in this update over some days. Wrote some tests, not all passed. More pain. May have to convert them to unit tests

For clarity, my expectation is, I built this. Nothing should be impossible for me

Surprisingly, I caught a somewhat lucky break –an ex colleague referred me to the 1st gig I'm getting in 1+ year. It's about writing a plugin for some obscure forum software. I'm not too excited cuz it's poorly documented and I'll have to do a lot of groping, they use arrays instead of objects etc. There's no guarantee I'll find how to implement all client's requirements

While brooding last night, surfing the PHP subreddit, stumbled on a post about using Rector to downgrade a codebase. I've always been interested in the reverse but didn't have any incentive to fret over it. Randomly googled and saw a post promising a codebase can be upgraded with 3 commands in 5 minutes to PHP 8. Piqued my interest around 12:something AM. Stayed up all night upgrading it, replacing PHPSTAN with Psalm, initializing the guy's project, merging Flow auth with master etc. I think it may have taken 5 minutes without the challenge of getting local dev environment to PHP 8

My mood is much lighter than it was, although the battle is not won yet –image tests are failing. For some weird reason, PHP8 can't read generated test images. Hope I can ride on that newfound lease on life to study the forum and get the features working

I have some other rant but this is already a lot to digest in one sitting. See you in rant #4

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