array_slice is not confused about negative length
I enjoy reading the amusingly named www.phpwtf.org on the rare occasions that they add a new post. A recent post complains about negative lengths when using array_slice (actually confusing it with array_splice at one point). Unfortunately, a technical issue means the site doesn't currently accept comments, so I'll simply make a blog post out of my comment there. The info may still be useful to other PHP programmers.
When using array_slice, a negative length does work, but it works differently to what one may expect. It does not start counting backwards from the start point (which would be intuitive, given a negative value for something called "length", nor does it have any result if the calculated end point ends up before the start point. The docs do actually specify this correctly: "If length is given and is negative then the sequence will stop that many elements from the end of the array." So:
$a = array ('a', 'b', 'c', 'd', 'e');
print_r (array_slice ($a, 2, -2));
print_r (array_slice ($a, 2, -1));
Array (  => c ) Array (  => c  => d )
That basically boils down to the following:
* Example function that operates as array_slice does *only*
* with zero-based numerically indexed arrays and when
* $offset is positive and $length is negative
function slice ($array, $offset, $length)
$result = array ();
for ($i = $offset; $i < count ($array) + $length; ++$i)
$result  = $array [$i];
In the example given on phpwtf.org, array_slice ($array, 0, -10) on an array with 1 element, that results in the for loop looping "for ($i = 0; $i < -9; ++$i)", which does nothing. Hence the empty array being returned.
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