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Davey Shafik:
Building a Community Presence
Jul 07, 2016 @ 10:17:40

Davey Shafik, a developer advocate at Akamai, has shared some of his own thoughts and perspective on his site about building a community presence for your company and help it "do community".

Your company has decided it needs to “do community”, whatever that means, you’re community manager 1 number one, what now? From my time as a developer advocate/evangelist under both marketing and engineering teams, I have come to some conclusions about how to build community presence. Though my experience is mostly with technical communities, this should apply pretty well to any community building.

He breaks it up into three man sections, filling each in with some background and concrete suggestions you can use to help get the ball rolling:

  • Identify Your Products Potential Audience(s)
  • Breadth First Evangelism
  • Depth First Evangelism
  • Localized Evangelism

He ends the post by reminding you that, while these suggestions can help you "get your foot in the door". He'll be following this post up with another providing more about how you can use the feedback you get to enhance and improve your efforts.

tagged: community presence company audience evangelism opinion

Link: https://daveyshafik.com/archives/70023-building-a-community-presence.html

Laravel News:
Has your company upgraded to PHP7 yet?
Mar 31, 2016 @ 10:28:34

On the Laravel News site they share the results of a Twitter poll asking developers and companies of they'd switched to PHP 7 yet.

Yesterday I ran a Twitter poll to see how many have moved to PHP7. With 650 votes here are the results. [...] tagged: upgrade php7 company twitter poll results

Link: https://laravel-news.com/2016/03/company-upgraded-php7-yet/

Community News:
A Field Guide to ElePHPants
Dec 02, 2015 @ 09:13:51

If you've been around the PHP community (or language) for any amount of time, you've noticed that the mascot for the language is an elephant. Back in the mid-2000s this mascot made a move into the real world and the first blue elePHPants were released as plush toys. Since then several different groups and companies have produced their own versions with their own colors and logos. There's several of them out there and the Field Guide to ElePHPants site lists them all.

The PHP elephpant, Elephpas hypertextus, was first sketched by Vincent Pontier in 1998. For ten years it was only seen in drawings. The plush elephpant was first sighted in 2007. Since that time a large number of variations have been observed in the wild.

The site covers fun facts about their overall appearance, identification of the generations, their "natural habitat" and how they're distributed. They then list each of the elePHPants including pictures, talking about the origins of each and several that are "coming soon" from other groups/conferences. Some of the elePHPants are more rare than others (like the Gold of which only one was produced) but more and more are coming on the scene all the time, usually as a part of Kickstarter campaigns.

tagged: field guide elephpant color company group

Link: http://afieldguidetoelephpants.net

Community News:
Rogue Wave Software Acquires Zend
Oct 06, 2015 @ 14:57:39

Zend has posted a new press release about their acquisition by Rogue Wave Software, a company specializing in tools and services "making it easy to write, test, and run complex code."

Rogue Wave Software announced today that it has acquired Zend Technologies, the leader in end-to-end PHP web and mobile application development and deployment solutions. With 50 percent of the web workload running on PHP, including Magento, Drupal, and WordPress, Zend products drive PHP in the enterprise, from code creation through production deployment.

[...] “Today’s announcement expands Rogue Wave into PHP web and mobile application development, underscoring our goal to make developers heroes by accelerating their ability to create great code,” said Brian Pierce, CEO of Rogue Wave.

It's something that's definitely taken the PHP community by surprise and left many wondering what the future of the language my hold with Zend having been such a critical part of the engine that parses and executes the PHP code we write every day. Chris Tankersly has already shared some of his thoughts on the matter and why, as he puts it, this "doesn't matter" to PHP and it's community as much as some are thinking.

tagged: zend acquire roguewavesoftware roguewave company software tools code

Link: http://www.zend.com/en/resources/news-and-events/newsroom/press/3683_rogue-wave-software-acquires-enterprise-php-leader-zend-acquisition-broadens-enterprise-strength-across-top-five-development-languages

Coen Jacobs:
Updating PHP is everyone’s responsibility
Mar 11, 2015 @ 10:06:46

In his latest post Coen Jacons suggests that updating PHP is everyone's responsibility - that keeping the PHP installation on your systems up to date is important for everyone, not just the system administrators.

The number one remark I heard when I launched WPupdatePHP, is that users shouldn’t be bothered with this. In an ideal world, this is true, but in reality this isn’t going to stand for long. [...] I know the WordPress core team is working really hard to get webhosting companies to update their PHP versions and I agree up to a certain level that this is the best way. It’s not the only way though. [...] This will help lower the percentage of PHP 5.2 and 5.3 users out there. There still will be people on older PHP versions who are caught out and without them knowing what is going on, nothing will change for them.

He talks about the efforts the WordPress core team is doing to try to convince hosting providers to update, but points out that while WordPress aims to run on those old versions, staying on them is a mistake. He also mentions that an effort like this is a constant thing, always changing as the PHP versions released change. He ends the post with a "call to arms" for users out there, encouraging them to get talking to their hosting provider and get those PHP versions updated.

Don’t understand me wrong, I like what WordPress is doing to get these requirements bumped, but I think it’s not enough. I disagree on the fact that users shouldn’t be involved in this. It’s easy enough for users to request their hosting platform to be upgraded. If their request isn’t heard, they should find a better webhosting company. [...] It’s been long enough, I choose to act now.
tagged: update version responsibility opinion hosting company wordpress

Link: http://coenjacobs.me/updating-php-everyones-responsibility/

Adam Culp:
Developer pool sustainability
Aug 05, 2014 @ 12:09:33

In his latest post Adam Culp talks about an interesting (and slightly disturbing) trend he's seeing in the technology and developer community in his area: developers are leaving/being picked up faster than they're being replaced.

Over the past couple years I’ve noticed a rise of good companies no longer outsource offshore to save money, instead they outsource because they can’t find developers here. [...] I’m sad to see the dwindling number of developers available to fill a growing number of jobs in South Florida. [...] Couple this with most companies and recruiters simply drain the pool without giving back, and governments sinking more and more of our hard earned taxes into already flooded non-tech related fields. The end result is higher unemployment, folks with a degree who can’t find work, and the vicious cycle continues on and on.

As the demand grows for more talented technical people, this gap is only going to widen. New developers aren't coming in fast enough (or learning fast enough) to fill the holes. He talks specifically about what he's seeing there in Florida, but it's a story that's happening in many places around the country...and some places around the world. Developers get "snatched up" by companies and they're no longer allowed or have the time to contribute back and teach the newer developers. He links to an article that discusses the same topic and comes to many of the same conclusions.

tagged: developer sustainability hiring contribute company

Link: http://www.geekyboy.com/archives/964

QaFoo Blog:
Testing: Find the Sweet Spot
Jul 18, 2013 @ 11:52:01

On the QaFoo blog there's a recent post interviewing Johann Peter Hartmann, the CTO of Mayflower, about current PHP testing practices and how to find that "sweet spot" that works for your development.

Talking to interesting people spawns ideas and spreads insight knowledge. Therefore, I talked to Johann Peter Hartmann about testing culture and how PHP projects should approach testing in 2013.

They talk about things like:

  • The move from "spaghetti code" to "quality code"
  • A discussion of the current tools
  • Defining a unit testing strategy
  • Test Driven Development

They also talk some about the training that the QaFoo folks provided to help them (Mayflower) work all of this out for their organization.

tagged: unittest bestpractices company organization

Link: http://qafoo.com/blog/051_testing_sweet_spot.html

Hasin Hayder's Blog:
Getting comfy with PhpStorm - one of the best IDEs so far!
Jan 02, 2012 @ 15:07:03

Hasin Haydertalks about "getting comfy with PHPStorm" a relatively recent addition to the IDE ranks for PHP.

I am a big time fan of Netbeans and I left it a few days after it’s release of 6.7. It was so good, heavenly, yummy but I had to leave this old pal because of it’s extreme hunger to the available resources. [...] I left Netbeans and started using PhpStorm. I have a company license and I am glad that I made this move. I am not going to preach PhpStorm in rest of this article, but what I will do is sharing my experience with PhpStorm.

He goes through a list of his favorite things about the IDE - its speed it operates at overall, great Javascript/HTML intellisense, version control integration, less resource intensive and that it costs less overall (and comes from a "developer friendly" company).

If you're interested in trying out PHPStorm for yourself, you can find a demo at http://www.jetbrains.com/phpstorm.

tagged: phpstorm ide opinion feature company developer

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PHPClasses.org:
Talented Web Developers Are Easy to Hire, Employers Are Just Not Looking Right
Nov 30, 2011 @ 09:57:05

A new post on the PHPClasses blog today suggests that good, talented web developers are actually pretty easy to find, you just have to look in the right places.

Once in a while, we hear company managers and recruiters complaining about how hard is to find talented Web developers that are willing work for them. The problem is that they are not looking right. Not only there are plenty of talented Web developers out there, they are easy to find, and many of them are available for hire.

The key point in his "easy to find developers" argument is simple - be open to telecommuting. Too many companies shun it because of the lack of control it brings to a group, but it also shuts down so many possibilities. He offers a few of his own reasons for the hesitation: the need to see the employee frequently, security concerns and trust issues. He also includes a few of the success stories of PHP community members who telecommute including Eli White, Ernani Joppert and Arturs Sosins.

tagged: find developer company telecommute opinion

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Alan Skorkin's Blog:
Software As A Destination vs Software As A Journey
May 11, 2010 @ 10:23:48

In a new post to his blog today Alan Skorkin compares two ways of thinking about developing software - either as a destination or as a journey.

There are two fundamental ways of looking at software development. One is all about the final product and the direct benefits you can get from it. The other is all about the lessons you learn from the process of building the software. I call them software as a destination and software as a journey. Historically speaking and even into the present day, the majority of companies that build any kind of software are 'software as a destination' companies.

He notes that, despite the company's stance on the software that's developed, most developers are more in the "journey" category and want to enjoy what they do and to evolve in their skills as they move through their career. Therein lies some of the problems with the software development industry - companies want the result, developers want what's best for the code and want to see it turn out as well as hoped.

I am not sure if there is any irony to be found in software, but if you direct all your focus towards your goal without paying due attention to the nitty gritty of what you're doing every day, you're likely to not get any useable software out of it. As long as you have a reasonable idea of where you want to end up, you just need to get the details right and the bigger picture will tend to sort itself out. On the other hand, you can have the clearest possible goal in mind, but if you let the details slide, bad things will almost certainly happen.
tagged: software development destination journey company developer opinion

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