The SymfonyLive conferences are a great way to meet Symfony experts from all around the world. They are being held in several cities this year alone: Paris, Berlin, San Francisco and London. The 4th edition of SymfonyLive London was held on 17th and 18th of September 2015. My colleague Ivo and I attended, together with our partner and friend, Antonio of Locastic.
However, this was not a regular conference for us. This time, we were one of the winners (together with phpBB and BackBee CMS) of community sponsorship, based on community vote, and went to present our integration of eZ Publish CMS and Sylius e-commerce. We won a community stand at the conference and one free ticket to the conference talks, and were the official SymfonyLive community partners. We also had a chance to talk about our project at the unconference session, where we presented it to a number of attendees who were interested to hear what can be done with eZ Publish and Sylius as a single Symfony app.
SymfonyLive London 2015 had it all. Great location (seriously, what location could be better than London - home to the Big Ben, the Tube, double deckers and iconic black cabs?), great view from the conference hall window, great lineup of speakers, and most important of all, great talks.
The conference had two parallel tracks, as well as aforementioned unconference session. While I didn't attend all the talks due to having to man the stand at certain times, those that I did attend were some of the most interesting talks I've heard this year.
Ciaran McNulty talked about testing and which tool among many many testing frameworks is right for the job. The conclusion is, of course, that it depends. It depends on your project, and it depends on the code you're testing, whether it's legacy or you're starting from scratch.
I finally had the chance to listen Bernhard Schussek talking about Puli, after missing the talk on a couple of conferences due to various reasons. Puli is a package resource manager that looks to enhance and simplify working with resources (templates, controllers, translation files, assets) in your vendor packages by abstracting them for you. The goal is to eliminate the fragmentation of packages across the PHP communities (Symfony, Drupal, eZ Publish, Laravel, you name it).
Phil Leggetter was talking about real-time applications in PHP and, most importantly, in Symfony. The real-time applications are always a controversial topic in the PHP community because many believe that PHP is not the right tool for the job. And that may be so, but Phil showed us that the PHP developers do have a choice and demonstrated several libraries one can use to work with real-time IO in PHP as well as their pros and cons.
Finally, Fabien Potencier held the closing keynote and addressed Symfony 3. He talked about everything related to it: why Symfony 3, what it brings, what it removes, what it changes. He demonstrated the best way to migrate to Symfony 3 and detailed the release schedule and plan.
After the conference, the attendees had a chance to mingle over some beers and snacks, sponsored by SensioLabs UK, in a bar downtown.
The conference was a very positive experience for me as well as for Netgen and Locastic. We learned a lot, we showed others what we do, we met some new (and old) friends and we had fun. What else could you ask for?