Codeigniter Conference 2012 - Post Conference Thoughts

Having not even got back home yet after the 2012 Codeigniter Conference I thought I’d write up some of my highlights of a very enjoyable weekend:

Testing - John Crepizzi

Testing is something I’ve been working on recently using Simpletest, Jenkins and Codeigniter with moderate success, it was great to see that PHPUnit can be used quite simply, however as full PHPUnit support is planned to be integrated into the core of Codeigniter in v3.0 I think I’ll wait before transitioning away from Simpletest.

API Driven Development - Nick Jackson

Nick did a great job of reassuring me I’m doing things right. I’ve just started a project where I’m essentially building the API first as I know there are going to be multiple apps on top of it. I’ll definitely be refining my existing API based on some of the tips given regarding response format.

MongoDB - Alex Bilbie

MongoDB is something I’ve played with but not used in anger yet, I’m not sure I have a use case for it yet but this talk did demonstrate some very cool edge case functions for searching using latitude and longitude where MongoDB will do all the heavy lifting when trying to do box searches on a 3d spherical earth model.

Who needs Ruby when you've got CodeIgniter? - Jamie Rumbelow

Jamie Rumberlow’s talk was very practical and showed some very good ideas of how Codeigniter could be improved but demonstrated some really hacky ways to make it work the way he wanted (putting non POST data for validation into $_POST anyone?). Really I’d have preferred to see him talk about how the framework could be improved to fit in with the best practice. That’s the kind of thing that gives Codeigniter a bad reputation amongst many PHP developers.

Live coding - Phil Sturgeon

Phil demoed setting up a pyrocms site on pagodabox, while I didn’t find the actual demo very relevant to me, I do like is looking into others coding setups, this lead me to spend half of the next talk configuring my bash prompt and colour scheme to show mercurial or git branch names!

Other Talks

All of the talks were very engaging but some not as interesting to me personally, in particular Harro Verton was a great speaker on ORMs but it just further confirmed my views that I’m not a fan.

General Thoughts

Generally the conference went well, the venue was pretty good (apart from the food) and the wifi nothing short of amazing. Oh and the best bit - a FREE t shirt!

I’m always in a bit of a love hate relationship with Codeigniter, it’s very quick and easy but its slightly old fashioned way of doing things and lack of modern features like auto-loading, namespacing and dependency injection make it annoy me and cause me to look at things like Symfony2 or Silex.

Still a great weekend away and thanks to all who were responsible for the planning and organisation. I’ll hopefully be back next time.