Last weekend Janeth, Andy and Simon (from Business Systems Solutions) headed over to Manchester Conference Centre for the second Annual PHP North West Conference. Organised by volunteers from the PHPNW user group it has a great community feel to it yet has a great reputation.
A few thoughts about some of the sessions I attended…
The Uncertainty Principle – Kelvin Henney
Nice start to the conference and a well presented talk. Main thing I picked up was that when presented with a choice you may not have to make a decision immediately.
Passing the Joel Test in the PHP world – Lorna Mitchell
Tools and Talent – Rowan Merewood
Plusnet’s Rowan Merewood gave a really good presentation about how they go about developing and deploying new tools. I was a little preoccupied finishing my own talk so I’ll be interested to take another look at the video.
Making your life easier: Xdebug – Derick Rethans
I’ve been aware of Xdebug for a long time, and I may have even tried it out but this talk showed some of the nice ways it can be used. Probably worth us having another look at deploying it on our development server.
Building an Anti-CMS – Michael Nolan
Integrating Zend Framework and symfony – Stefan Koopmanschap
Skoop’s talk covered how Zend and Symfony can be used together. We actually already do this – our search engine is powered by Zend Lucene – but there’s probably more components we can use, and some of the new Symfony components look like they have potential.
Everything you wanted to know about UTF-8 – Juliette Reinders Folmer
Maybe a little too detailed for 10am on a Sunday morning, but interesting to see how difficult this problem is to solve.
Intro to OOP with PHP – Rick Ogden
Pretty basic introduction to OOP but we often forget that not everyone learns this stuff so it was good to see.
PHP 5.3 – Hot or Not? – Sara Golemon
If PHP 4’s unwillingness to die is anything to go by then 5.3 may take a while to adopt widely. There’s some nice features though and if they’re required for a future version of symfony then it’s well worth us starting to make use of them.
jQuery – Michael Heap
We use jQuery pretty extensively as part of GO and our corporate website so I understood most of the code demonstrated but it was nice to see how to create plugins.
That’s all for my quick round up of PHP North West 2009. Overall a very good event. Thanks must go to Jeremy, his team at Solution Perspective Media and Lorna Mitchell, without whom the conference wouldn’t happen.