Starting with PHP 7.4+, you can use the null coalescing assignment operator (
??=). It is a shorthand to assign a value to a variable if it hasn't been set already. Consider the following examples, which are all equivalent:
// using the ternary operator $x = (isset($x) ? $x : $y);
// PHP 7+ // using the null coalescing operator $x = $x ?? $y;
// PHP 7.4+ // using the null coalescing assignment operator $x ??= $y;
The null coalescing assignment operator only assigns the value if
null or not set. For example:
// PHP 7.4+ $x = 'foo'; $x ??= 'bar'; echo $x; // 'foo'
// PHP 7.4+ $x = null; $x ??= 'bar'; echo $x; // 'bar'
// PHP 7.4+ $x ??= 'bar'; echo $x; // 'bar'
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