Prototype framework

Backend implementation (PHP)

Structure of project folder


Errors and exceptions

  • In the code of the prototype framework (php), around 250 places exist where an exception is thrown. Exceptions are thrown with a message and code. For the code we reuse the HTTP status codes, to have clear semantics and to determine which error is returned to the user.

  • Codes 4xx are bad request by the user, and result in an error which is always shown in full details to the user. E.g.

    • "404 Resource not found" when a user requests an atom which does not exist.

    • "403 You do not have access to this page" when a user doesn't have the required ROLE

    • "400 Data entry too long"

  • Codes 5xx are server side errors, and indicate a programming error which is (in most cases) not caused by user input. These exceptions can give away how the code is structured, which is why depending on the debugMode settings, the error message is shown to the user or not. In case debugMode is off, a generic message is shown: 'An error occured (debug information in server log files)'. When debugMode is on, the user can click on the error message and see the stack trace.

  • The log files always contain details about the exception.

  • All exceptions are caught by the API framework we use, and transformed into a json structure for the frontend.

  • As php code is compiled at runtime, the prototype framework can contain errors that can't be caught and/or handled by the API framework. This especially holds for errors early in the execution, when initializing the API framework or AmpersandApp object.

  • We use a static analyzer to check the code during development. This prevents us from introducing bugs that can be detected by such an analyzer (which is actually a lot).

    • At most class methods we specify input and return type definitions. This improves the static analyses.

Frontend implementation (AngularJS)

Building and packaging the application

TODO explain: Bower, NPM, Gulp