templates posts

Symfony: PHP Templating Engine and Global Variables

At Cogneato, we are using Symfony’s PHP templating engine to render our views for compatibility with our existing system and for allowing our developers to continue using the same language they’re used to. I was looking for a way to make various services and other “variables” globally available in all view files, like can be done for Twig as mentioned in this cookbook. I asked on Stack Overflow, but didn’t get what I was looking for. We came up with our own solutions. I provided some as my own answer to that question. I will discuss the ones I can think of in this post.


The one answer to my Stackoverflow question pointed out that the $view object has a container member object that has services available, and you can also access parameters set in your configuration file. Services would be accessed like (I believe):

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WordPress: Determining Sections

There are many issues encountered when using WordPress as a CMS. One thing that is common on regular websites is the concept of sections. Different sections might have different highlighted or open menu items, sidebar content, layouts, or actions from the same widgets (search this section for instance). WordPress offers the ability to use different template files depending on the category of posts or what is selected for a page. This is somewhat limited though, as sites might have multiple pages and categories in a section. WordPress also has various functions that can be used in “if” statements to determine if the current page/post matches certain criteria. These can be logically connected in “if” statements to determine if “the_post” is in a section and placed anywhere in template files, but this requires repeating the same logic questions in every place you must determine the section, and would thus be a pain to maintain.

To keep these “if” questions in one place, I built myself a function to store them in, allowing me to ask if a page is in a section using only a name.

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WordPress: Multiple Dynamic Sidebars

I’m making a “blank” type template for WordPress that I’ll be able to modify for sites as I develop them.  I wanted to make sure my template was compliant with the dynamic sidebars feature of WordPress and have multiple sidebars already there for quick creation with new sites.  I wanted the first to have some default content, while the others would not be displayed unless they have dynamic content.  I suppose that might not end up being useful for the fixedness of the one-off designs I’ve been doing, but we’ll see…

The tutorials I found didn’t discuss how to make the container for each of multiple sidebars display only if the sidebar had dynamic widgets.  The is_dynamic_sidebar() function is what was needed.  So I register my sidebars like normal, in “functions.php”:

register_sidebars(2, array(
'before_widget' => '<div id="%1$s" class="widget %2$s">',
'after_widget' => '</div>',
'before_title' => '<h2>',
'after_title' => '</h2>',
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Worpress Page Template Next & Previous Links

I ran into this problem on the Stearns events and recipes pages, which both use custom templates pulling in posts from a particular category.  We use the query_posts() function on those pages.  The next_posts_link() and previous_posts_link() functions are used on normal multi-post pages to navigate through more items than appear on one page.  Using the query_posts() function without the paging, such as:


the paging doesn’t work at all: It just shows the same results for each page. To get this to work, you must tack on the “paged” parameter with the “$paged” wordpress php variable, like:


and pagination will work just fine. You can only do this for one set of items, but you’d want to break out to a separate page for multiple anyway.