The Developer Day | Staying Curious

TAG | phpuk



Lost Art of Simplicity PHP UK 2010

Lost Art of Simplicity by Josh Holmes was the keynote talk at the PHP UK 2010 conference. I found it to be an interesting talk with lots of good advice. While listening to Josh I was able to identify myself in the past participating in all the common software development pitfalls. I would like to share what I consider to be at least some of the most important points from the talk:

  1. Work with your users. Focus on them and their exact needs. As developers we often tend to forget that actual users will be using our systems. We should stop and think is what we’re doing going to fulfill the actual needs of our users.
  2. When deciding which tools to use for a particular problem or a project always carefully weigh all the benefits and downsides to pick the best tools for the job. If for example most of your company’s software is written in PHP and is using MySQL doesn’t necessarily mean that you should keep doing so. It might be that another language such as Python or another type of a data store such as CouchDB might be a better choice for your next project. Developers also like to play with new shiny experimental toys but it doesn’t mean that it’s the best idea for your company to use it for a particular problem.
  3. Do the simplest thing possible. As Albert Einstein once said “Things should be made as simple as possible, but not any simpler”. “Cleverness” might not always be a good solution. Complexity involves more moving parts and more possibilities for things to fail. As developers we tend to think about possible future developments. While it is good to do so it is also important not to over do it. While it may be reasonable to believe that a different caching mechanism might be used for a project that you work on it’s less likely that another database vendor will be used in the future.
  4. Invented here syndrome. It is very likely that any problem you will have will be already solved by many other people before you. If instead of inventing your own solution to the problem you can use someone else’s tools by all means do so. Not every tool might do exactly what you need, not every tool might seem trustworthy enough but there’s no excuse for not trying to find the best available tools.

If you are interested to learn more take a look at Josh’s blog where presentation slides and a full transcript is available.

, , Hide



PHP London Conference 2010

I’m pleased to say that I will be attending the PHP UK conference 2010 in London. Last year I attended PHPNW 2009 which was great and I hope PHP London to be even better. It will be certainly interesting to listen to famous PHP speakers such as Stefan Priebsch, Fabien Potencier author of Symfony. The conference schedule has been announced and these are the talks that I’m going to attend:

  • The lost art of simplicity
  • AntiPHPatterns
  • PHP 5.3 in practice
  • PHPillow & CouchDB & PHP
  • ‘In search of…’ - integrating site search systems
  • PHP on the D-BUS

The keynote talk about lost art of simplicity sounds very promising. Also very eager to see Fabien’s presentation on how PHP 5.3 can be used in practice.

, , , , Hide

Find it!

Theme Design by