Installing Flight

Installing Flight with Composer

Create a composer.json file with the following contents:

{
    "require": {
        "mikecao/flight": "1.*"
    }
}

Then from the command line run: php composer.phar install

Install Flight manually

From the Flight github page, download the zip of the repository and extract the framework files to your web app directory.

Setting up your server

For Apache web servers you will need to create or edit your .htaccess file with the following:

RewriteEngine On
RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} !-f
RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} !-d
RewriteRule ^(.*)$ index.php [QSA,L]

For Nginx web servers edit your server declaration with the following:

server {
    location / {
        try_files $uri $uri/ /index.php;
    }
}

Flight hello world

Create an index.php file in your web directory and start editing it. If you installed Flight with Composer then add the following to the top of the file:

require_once 'vendor/autoload.php';

Or, if you installed Flight manually then:

require_once 'flight/Flight.php';

Create a route for the index of the application:

Flight::route('/', function(){
    echo 'hello world!';
});

Then start Flight:

Flight::start();

The complete code should look like this:

require_once 'vendor/autoload.php';
//require_once 'flight/Flight.php'; // If you installed Flight manually

Flight::route('/', function(){
    echo 'hello world!';
});

Flight::start();

Now open your browser and navigate to your web applications URL. You should see a “hello world” message

Create a JSON web service with Flight PHP

Preface

This part of the tutorial assumes you have basic knowledge of PHP and MySQL and can do basic operations such as; connect to database through a shell or workbench, creating a database, creating tables, and query a MySQL database from PHP.

Setting up the database

First thing we are going to do is to set up a simple database. For this example I am going to using MySQL. Either in a MySQL console, or in MySQL workbench create a new database for this tutorial. Make sure the new database is selected with USE database replaceing “database” with the name you gave the database. Now execute the following:

CREATE TABLE posts (
    id int unsigned NOT NULL AUTO_INCREMENT,
    title varchar(50) DEFAULT NULL,
    body text,
    published tinyint DEFAULT 0,
    PRIMARY KEY (id)
);

Then insert some data:

INSERT
  INTO posts (title, body)
VALUES ("Flight PHP", "Pellentesque habitant morbi tristique senectus et netus et malesuada fames ac turpis egestas.");

INSERT
  INTO posts (title, body)
VALUES ("Dog and the Fox", "The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog.");

INSERT
  INTO posts (title, body)
VALUES ("PHP", "PHP is cool!");

Create the Flight app

Now it is time to create the Flight app. For this app, lets get our JSON data from the /json-dataroute.

Flight::route('GET /json-data', function() {

});

Connect to the database

$db = new PDO('mysql:host=localhost;dbname=db', 'username', 'password');

You will need to put your database name in place of “db” right after “dbname=”, and replace the username/password with yours.

Gather the data

Next we will create a prepared statement and execute it.

$stmt = $db->prepare("SELECT * FROM posts");
$stmt->execute();

Present the data

And finally, we need to set the content type header to application/json to let the client that connects to this service know what type of data they are receiving. Then we display the results from the prepared statement is JSON format. At the very end close the database connection.

header('Content-type: application/json');
echo json_encode($stmt->fetchAll());

$db = null;

Conclusion

The final product should look something like this:

require_once 'vendor/autoload.php';
//require_once 'flight/Flight.php'; // If you installed Flight manually

Flight::route('GET /json-data', function() {
    $db = new PDO('mysql:host=localhost;dbname=dbname', 'username', 'password');

    $stmt = $db->prepare("SELECT * FROM posts");
    $stmt->execute();

    header('Content-type: application/json');
    echo json_encode($stmt->fetchAll());

    $db = null;
});

Flight::start();

If you navigate to you the URL of your web app you should be able to see a JSON string representing each row of the database. Now using either an AJAX call, or a server side HTTP request you will be able to get this JSON data and parse it for a specific use.

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