Further@LaraconEU Madrid 2019

The 23rd of May was a special day for us, as we attended our first Laracon in Madrid. We've been using Laravel since 2014 (version 4.2), and since it is part of our main tech stack and we're also trying to take active part in the local community, Laracon has always been high up on our conferences bucket list, but it just didn't work out for us until now.

We arrived early on the 22nd, and after a long walk exploring Madrid and some awesome paella, we dropped by Teatros Luchana for an evening of networking, drinks and tapas, sponsored by Cyber Duck. It was great to meet new people who think alike and are all excited about Laravel, the same way we are.

Teatros Luchana was an awesome venue, with a really cool industrial design
Teatros Luchana was an awesome venue, with a really cool industrial design

The actual conference kicked off the next morning. After a quick breakfast and some more mingling, Freek Van der Herten started the talks with his piece called "Supercharging Common Controllers". After going through some of best practices to keep your code clean, Freek presented some (more) awesome packages they developed at Spatie. Their work in the Laravel open-source space is quite unparalelled and it was nice to talk to them during the breaks.

Next up was Christoph Rumpel of Laravel Core Adventures with a deep-dive on how the internals of the Laravel framework functions. Some really good content, and maybe a subscription is in order?

Krystal Campioni raised awareness about accessibility issues on modern websites and showed us how to use colour theory to circumnavigate some of them. Sprinkled with some VueJS awesomeness of course.

There's no Laracon without a new package being presented and Sander van Hooft did exactly that. He talked about a new Cashier integration for Mollie, which brings European country-specific payment gateways to Laravel.

Nuno Maduro wrapped up the morning session with his talk "Writing Effective PHP", in which he spoke about the importance of defensive programming "only when it's needed" and why everybody should integrate static analysis tools like PHPStan in their deployment processes. He also presented PHPInsights, another static analysis tool he develops and maintains. Make sure you check it out, we'll definitely be going to use it.

Marcel Pociot was given the tough job of following a lavish tapas-fueled lunch, but he delivered, by repeating his Laracon Online presentation about building "Realtime Applications with Laravel".

Next up was a frontend talk by Vitor Caneco talking about Tailwind CSS and the use of utility-first CSS frameworks, followed by Dimitris Savvopoulos with a demo on event sourcing in Laravel.

After a short break Antti Rössi followed with probably the best talk of the day. He raised some serious issues about software security and how to avoid them. I bet a lot of people were checking their source codes for vulnerabilities after this.

Up next was Julien Bourdeau speaking about multi-tenant and multi-domain Laravel apps. The final talk was by Adam Wathan with yet another fine demo on how to design advanced components on VueJS.

We've been to a couple of conferences before, and there's always some talks that are just sub-par, but I can honestly say, it wasn't the case here. The quality of the speakers was excellent, all-round.

The venue was also really cool. An awesome movie theatre with a funky industrial design interior. It wasn't big, but it's coziness really added to the friendly atmosphere. The tapas was also great, in fact each meal in Madrid was mouth-watering. I guess that's one of the perks of being in Spain.

Best of all was the community. Everybody was really open-minded, talkative and just good people to hang out with. We made some new friends and found out a lot about the communities and projects around Europe. We can't wait to see them again. One thing's for sure: we'll definitely be back next year (we actually got our tickets this morning!)

It was a nice surprise to see that the Laracon t-shirts had our company colours
It was a nice surprise to see that the Laracon t-shirts had our company colours.