LAMP and Beyond

Web development has an ever-changing landscape with new technologies emerging every day. Choosing which technologies to adopt and invest in can be a daunting task, which is why we firmly believe in getting involved in the community that surrounds your programming language and development approaches. If you would like to know more about a particular technology or you have a problem that you’re struggling to solve, there are always developers within the PHP and other communities who are happy to take time out and help you along. It is because of these communities that events such as LAMP and Beyond are possible.

Events like these require people who are willing to pull themselves out of bed on a Saturday morning after working all week, to improve their skills and kindly share the skills they possess. This is the backbone of LAMP and Beyond, a knowledge sharing session covering all things Linux, Apache, MySQL, PHP and beyond (any interesting web technology which takes your fancy). The event was organised by, Jeremy Coates, owner of Magma Digital Ltd and the founder the PHPNW conference and local user group.

As many of you are probably aware, we strongly believe in supporting the web community; that’s why Magma Digital also sponsored the event by providing free Pizza and refreshments ensuring that everyone had enough brain power to function for the duration of the day.

LAMP and Beyond was a hands on event where a number of developers were available to share their knowledge of specific technologies and development tools with the other attendees. The event kicked off at around 10am on Saturday 30th June. We used a flip chart to simply list out our interests or skills of things related to but beyond LAMP. Initially the ‘Interests’, predictably filled up at quite a pace, or at least in comparison to the sparsely populated ‘Skills’.

It was interesting to observe how few people wanted to list a skill, despite every developer in the room having a skill that a fellow developer could benefit from. However, with a little encouragement and motivation, more and more developers began to contribute to the skills list, even when they felt they didn’t know a particular technology inside out.

When speaking to one of our developers, Michael, he found this to be a great experience as he felt fairly unfamiliar with teaching and speaking. LAMP and Beyond provided him with the opportunity to share his knowledge in a pressure free environment away from the projector, building his confidence to take the next step.

The session was very interactive with a huge selection of skills and interests listed, ranging from PHP frameworks such as Symfony 2, Silex, Zend Framework and Drupal, server technologies such as nginx and NodeJS, through to continuous integration and code quality tools such as PHP Unit and Jenkins.

Whatever you’re in to or were looking to discover, there was almost something going on that would have caught your attention. LAMP and Beyond certainly proved to be a fantastic opportunity to get out there and hack freely in a chilled out environment, with like minded people.

We would like to thank Manchester Digital Laboratory (@MadLabUK)

Written by Heather 

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