Pragmatism in the real world

The Dutch PHP conference 2010

This year I was invited to speak at DPC 2010 which was a great conference. I’ve published to Flickr, my complete set of photos from DPC 10.

Arriving on Wednesday, the day before the conference, I managed to get to meet up with my friend Juliette, along with a some of the other speakers for a barbeque which was a lot of fun. We ate, we drank (lots) and possibly this pose by Chris was the most surreal picture I took that evening!

I cannot even begin to think of a caption

On tutorial day, I gave a Zend Framework tutorial with Matthew Weier O’Phinney which seemed to go down quite well. We took a different approach this year to the previous ones that Matthew has given in that we talked about different application patterns and components that you can use in your ZF application; rather going through building an application from scratch. This had the benefit that we could talk about stuff that we wouldn’t have got to normally. There were some other excellent tutorials that I was sorry to miss; I’m not quite sure how the attendees were able to make up their minds!

The conference was opened by Lorna and then Kevlin gave the opening keynote speaking about 97 things every programmer should know. This was an excellent keynote which fired us up for the day. In the morning, I gave my presentation on Zend_Form which I didn’t feel came across quite as well as I could have done. I should probably revisit the content and pack some other bits in. This talk clearly showed the difficulties of aiming a presentation at the audience’s level as I had some people there who had never used Zend_Form and others who knew it and were looking for more nitty-gritty details. Maybe I didn’t set their expectations correctly at the start.

There were many other excellent presentations on the first day an I managed to catch Johannes‘ talk, ‘Under PHP’s hood‘ about what goes on within the PHP engine. An excellent talk with content that I highly recommend every PHP developer learns. I finished the day listening to Cal talk about Flex and whilst he hasn’t convinced me to go that route, I know actually know a little about what it actually is!

In the evening, I had dinner with the other speakers and then we went to the conference social hosted by Ibuildings and github. This was very well attended and I had several good conversations with people.


The second day of the conference started with a keynote by Chris Shifflet about Security patterns. I had already seen this talk and it was just as fascinating seeing it again. Definitely lots to think about. I gave my last talk of the conference immediately after the keynote and spoke on Deployment. I felt that this talk went well and that most of the audience got something out of it.

In a break from technical content, I went to see Elizabeth‘s talk on technical writing. Whilst I consider myself competent, I learnt lots and managed to not embarrass myself too much during the interactive section when I was volunteered (thanks Chris!) to go up and help Elizabeth illustrate a point. I also managed to drop in on the uncon and see Juozas and Ben talk about Doctrine 2, which seems to be considerably better than D1. The conference ended with a panel of leading lights in the PHP world talking about PHP and where it’s headed.

Closing keynote panel

After conference ended, I went with a number of other people to a pancake restaurant and had an excellent meal, followed by a drink (or two!) with friends in the hotel bar. I had joked earlier in the evening that the bar bill would end up being paid by whomever was left standing at closing time… mdgm and myself had that honour :)

Again, DPC 2010 was a great conference and I want to thank Lorna and the DPC crew again for inviting me.