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HHVM Blog:
Hack Developer Day 2014 Keep Hacking
April 11, 2014 @ 09:40:00

On the Facebook HHVM blog today there's a post about the Hack Developer Day they recently held in Menlo Park. The event brought in developers for a day of presentations from the Hack/HHVM engineers.

150+ Members of the PHP and developer community came to Facebook headquarters and joined over 2000 people online for presentations by the engineers of Hack and HHVM. Afterwards we held a five hour hackathon, where the attendees worked with those engineers to write Hack code, either by converting current codebases or writing new code from scratch.

For those that weren't able to attend or are interested in catching up on what was presented, they've posted videos of all of the sessions in a YouTube playlist as well as PDFs of all the slides. If you want the short version of what was presented, there's a quick list in the post or you can read a recap on the Facebook Engineering blog.

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hack developer day facebook presentation video slides summary

Link: http://hhvm.com/blog/4685/hack-developer-day-2014-keep-hacking

CiteWorld.com:
Facebook's Hack language a silver bullet for user-developers
March 26, 2014 @ 10:41:16

In this new post to CiteWorld.com, they're making the claim that the Hack language from the developers at Facebook is the "silver bullet for user-developers".

How do you modernize the way we build the web? That's the question at the heart of the release of a flurry of new languages and development platforms -- all from companies that run and build large scale web services. [...] While getting more out of CSS is good, as is replacing JavaScript; Facebook's HHVM and Hack combo is targeting one of the foundations of the modern web: rapid application development.

They talk some about the overall goals of Hack (improved performance, a stricter typing system) and include a brief example of some Hack code. They consider it to be a "more modern language" that brings PHP-based development up into a different level of languages. He also talks about HHVM a bit, migration from PHP to Hack and the potential for Hack to be adopted on other platforms outside of the current HHVM runtimes.

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hack facebook silverbullet language developer overview

Link: http://www.citeworld.com/development/23156/hack-future

Jonathan Hill:
How much does it cost to be a web developer?
March 14, 2014 @ 11:17:48

Jonathan Hill has taken an interesting perspective in his recent post looking more at some of the average financial costs around being a web developer.

With Software Development topping 2014′s top jobs list, I thought I would share how much it cost me to become a web developer, and what my monthly expenses look like nowadays.

He breaks it down into a few different categories, listing an average price for each:

  • Initial (start-up) costs for hardware and software
  • Training costs
  • Recurring costs

Obviously, not all of the software and tools he lists are needed for every software developer, but it does give some perspective. Thankfully, he also links to some free alternatives to the tools he mentions that can reduce these costs as well.

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cost developer average hardware software service

Link: http://jonathonhill.net/2014-02-19/how-much-does-it-cost-to-be-a-web-developer/

Coding the Architecture:
Five things every developer should know about software architecture
March 05, 2014 @ 11:57:58

While not specific to PHP, this new article on the Coding the Architecture blog gives some good insights on what developers should know about software architecture.

Now I may be biased, but a quick look at my calendar hints to me that there's a renewed and growing interest in software architecture. Although I really like much of the improvement the agile movement has provided to the software development industry, I still can't help feeling that there are a large number of teams out there who struggle with a lack of process.

[...] Put very simply, software architecture plays a pivotal role in the delivery of successful software yet it's frustratingly neglected by many teams. Whether performed by one person or shared amongst the team, the architecture role exists on even the most agile of teams yet the balance of up front and evolutionary thinking often reflects aspiration rather than reality. The big problem is that software architecture has fallen out of favour over the past decade or so. Here are five things that every software developer should know about it.

Each of the five things comes with a paragraph of explanation (and some links to additional resources):

  • Software architecture isn't about big design up front
  • Every software team needs to consider software architecture
  • The software architecture role is about coding, coaching and collaboration
  • You don't need to use UML
  • A good software architecture enables agility
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software developer tips top5 architecture

Link: http://www.codingthearchitecture.com/2014/03/05/five_things_every_developer_should_know_about_software_architecture.html

SitePoint PHP Blog:
The Pros and Cons of Zend Certification
February 10, 2014 @ 11:35:49

The SitePoint PHP blog has a new post that weighs the pros and cons of getting the Zend PHP Certification. The Zend Certified PHP Engineer is described as "a measure of distinction that employers use to evaluate prospective employees".

As a PHP developer, you may have been asking yourself how to improve your skills, gain reputation or become more professional in your work. One of the ways of doing so is to get through a certification programme. The only one that covers PHP itself (not a particular framework or software solution) is being delivered by the Zend company. In the remainder of the article I will focus on this particular certificate and describe its advantages and disadvantages. At the end I will also mention some other certification programs that may be valuable to a PHP developer.

He starts with a bit of general information about the certification including some of the categories it covers. He then gets into the pros and cons, listing two items for each. He suggests that it's a good way to measure your knowledge but there is a question of how much it really proves to get a passing score.

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zend certification opinion pro con developer

Link: http://www.sitepoint.com/pros-cons-zend-certification/

Voices of the ElePHPant:
It's the Booze Talking #5 Core Developers
February 04, 2014 @ 13:56:36

The Voices of the ElePHPant podcast has released its latest episode, the next in their "It's the Booze Talking" roundtable series - Episode #5, "Core Developers".

This episode was recorded live at last year's ZendCon PHP Conference in Santa Clara, California. Guests for the episode were:

  • Sara Golemon
  • Derick Rethans
  • Illia Alshanetsky
  • Ben Ramsey Liz Smith
  • David Stockton

There's also mention of the PHP Mentoring project and the PHP RFC process. You can listen to this latest episode either through the in-page player or by downloading the mp3 for listening at your leisure.

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voicesoftheelephpant community roundtable core developer booze podcast

Link: http://voicesoftheelephpant.com/2014/02/04/its-the-booze-talking-5-core-developers

Matthew Turland:
How to be a Great Developer
January 28, 2014 @ 11:43:18

In his latest post Matthew Turland has shared some of his thoughts about how to be a better developer, regardless of the language or skill level you may find yourself at.

I've shamefully ripped off the title for this blog post from what I expect will be a phenomenal session given by Ed Finkler at php[tek] 2014. Sadly, I haven't seen the session and may not be present at the conference. However, I've spoken with Ed and seen him give sessions on several occasions, so I know he sets the bar pretty high. If you've not considered attending the conference and his session, I highly recommend doing so. Ed has plenty of insightful things to say about being a great developer. Today, the subject coincidentally crossed my mind and I realized I had a few things to say on the matter that may also prove useful to others.

He suggests that there are three main qualities that developers need to become better at their craft and, as a positive side effect, work better with other developers around them. These three points are:

  • Humility
  • Patience
  • Imperfection

For each, he briefly explains the topic and makes some practical suggestions for achieving the goal.

These are things I've learned from my own experiences. I state them here realizing that they may be more applicable to me than they are to you. You must form your own opinions and find your own wisdom. [...] In the end, you must find your own path. Regardless of what that path is, I hope you find the passion shared by myself and those who inspire me and I wish you well in your pursuits.
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great developer opinion humility patience imprefection

Link: http://matthewturland.com/2014/01/24/how-to-be-a-great-developer/

php[architect]:
January 2014 Issue Released - How to Be a Better Developer
January 27, 2014 @ 12:29:14

[php]architect has officially released their latest issue - the January edition with articles focusing on how to be a better developer (and a few other things).

The first issue of 2014 is now available. Our January issue aims to give you some tips and tricks to make your development life easier.

Articles in this edition include:

  • Straight-forward ways improve your developer skills
  • Thoughts on commenting code from two great developers
  • Get the CLI working for you with console apps and ZF2
  • Learn which common OOP misconceptions you may be following
  • Harness the power of regex

You can pick up your own copy (print or digital) directly from the php[architect] site.

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phparchitect jan2014 issue release better developer

Link: http://www.phparch.com/magazine/2014-2/january/

Mashable.com:
10 Programming Languages You Should Learn in 2014
January 23, 2014 @ 12:09:46

According to this new post over on the Mashable site, PHP is one of the "languages to learn" for 2014. Others in the list include Java, C and relatives, Python and Ruby.

The tech sector is booming. If you've used a smartphone or logged on to a computer at least once in the last few years, you've probably noticed this. As a result, coding skills are in high demand, with programming jobs paying significantly more than the average position. Even beyond the tech world, an understanding of at least one programming language makes an impressive addition to any resumé.

They point out that PHP powers more than 200 million websites all around the internet and shares a few links of places to learn more about the language (including Udemy and Codeacademy).

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programming language learn 2014 mashable developer

Link: http://mashable.com/2014/01/21/learn-programming-languages

Lorna Mitchell:
Zend Certified PHP Developer 5.5
January 08, 2014 @ 09:23:45

If you're thinking about taking the Zend Certified PHP Developer (5.5) test but aren't sure exactly where to start, Lorna Mitchell has provided a list of some good resources to help you out.

Yesterday I updated my previous ZCE certificate to the Zend Certified PHP Developer qualification (the new ZCE for PHP 5.5 also got a new name). Since the ZCE 5.3 exam is no longer available and I work with various clients to prepare their teams for these certifications, it was important to me that I keep my own certification up to date. Now I've done that, I'd like to share some resources for others doing the same thing.

She points to a few things that could help you make the grade:

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zend certified developer test certification resource list

Link: http://www.lornajane.net/posts/2014/zend-certified-php-developer-5-5


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