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Pseudo-types and variables used in this documentation


mixed indicates that a parameter may accept multiple (but not necessarily all) types.

gettype() for example will accept all PHP types, while str_replace() will accept strings and arrays.


number indicates that a parameter can be either integer or float.


Some functions like call_user_func() or usort() accept user defined callback functions as a parameter. Callback functions can not only be simple functions but also object methods including static class methods.

A PHP function is simply passed by its name as a string. You can pass any built-in or user defined function with the exception of array(), echo(), empty(), eval(), exit(), isset(), list(), print() and unset().

A method of an instantiated object is passed as an array containing an object as the element with index 0 and a method name as the element with index 1.

Static class methods can also be passed without instantiating an object of that class by passing the class name instead of an object as the element with index 0.

Apart from common user-defined function, create_function() can be used to create an anonymous callback function.

Example 2.13.  Callback function examples

// An example callback function
function my_callback_function() {
'hello world!';

// An example callback method
class MyClass {
myCallbackMethod() {
'Hello World!';

// Type 1: Simple callback

// Type 2: Static class method call
call_user_func(array('MyClass', 'myCallbackMethod'));

// Type 3: Object method call
$obj = new MyClass();
call_user_func(array($obj, 'myCallbackMethod'));


In PHP4, you will have to use a reference to create a callback that points to the actual object, and not a copy of it. For more details, see References Explained.


void in return type means that the return value is useless. void in parameters list means that the function doesn't accept any parameters.


$... in function prototypes means and so on. This variable name is used when a function can take an endless number of arguments.