As web developers it is easy to become complacent and offer the same service year in and year out, staying within the realms of comfortability and not advancing within our industry. The problem is that for us, this simply will not do. The web is an ever-changing place with new technology being released daily and keeping ahead of the curve is a difficult task. Attending conferences such as Laracon allow us to do just that, through talks from leading industry professionals and invaluable networking opportunities with like minded individuals we are able to hone our skills and provide a better service to our customers.
Laracon EU is the European annual conference for the Laravel framework, voted the most popular PHP framework of 2015 and is one of the tools used at Codemakers HQ to build web applications. So myself and Dom went along.
The conference spans two days and is based in central Amsterdam at the Royal Tropical Institute, which proved to be a great location with the event running smoothly and nobody going hungry. We were lucky enough to be staying quite close to the venue, meaning we could easily cycle each day and also experience a bit more of the city than if we had been travelling by tram.
The talks themselves covered a good range of topics and were delivered by an impressive set of speakers, here are our highlights:
Konstantin is a great speaker; very engaging and knows how to inject a little humour into an otherwise serious talk. He discussed the time investment required for the different phases of developing a project, and how through unit testing and proactive refactoring you can cut development time and make sure your product remains maintainable throughout the life of the project.
Jeffrey is a very respected figure in the Laravel ecosystem and he provided a great closing talk for the conference. As developers we can easily get tied up in “the right way” to overcome a problem, however what is right for one problem is probably not right for the next. He spoke about and gave examples of how focusing on fundamentals and attention to detail can guide you in the right direction. The talk really hit home and has inspired me to do some things a little differently.
We had an inspiring couple of days at Laracon and have come back with a wealth of ideas, some of which have already been put in to practice. And we only had one minor bicycle collision.
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