SymfonyCon Madrid 2014, the Sf2 community it's getting as stable as it can get

Since I had the privilege of attending the SymfonyCon in Madrid, in the past couple of days, I thought it would be nice to wrap up my thoughts on the event and the state, from my point of view, of the symfony community.

Broader expansion

From what I could see, it looks like symfony is trying to expand in a way so that it can reach out to a bigger part of the PHP community: both Fabien and Ryan spent a few words on how we should make the process of embracing symfony a bit easier and the importance of the DX initiative in this direction.

To me, this looks like a very good move as it will influence the community, as a whole, in a drastic way: if we can get PHP developers to embrace, by default, all the best practices that symfony endorses (decoupling, testing, etc.) then we’ve got a great road ahead of us.

When I first bumped into PHP I must admit that the panorama was much messier, whereas today developers are already used to tools like Composer, standards like the ones promoted by the php-fig, which shows that we’ve improved a lot, but there’s still a lot to do (and more legacy to fight :)).

Fabien also pointed out how we shouldn’t expect drastic changes for Symfony 3 and the leit motif of his first keynote was a focus on making the ecosystem around the framework more complete, stable, rather than pushing towards innovation: as you probably already know, Symfony2 is really stable and the overall feeling I had is that we won’t see anything technically crazy in the next couple of years but rather see the framework and the surroundings getting simpler and more “complete”.

I particularly appreciated one of the final presentations, about Sensio’s newborn Blackfire, which looks like a very promising tool in order to monitor performances and optimize without too much hassle.

It is now in public beta so I invite you to try it on any random project you are developing, as the setup literally takes 5 minutes.

Time to look beyond Symfony2

I should also be a little critical :)

One of the things that I missed, not being in the trenches with symfony on a daily basis, were those in-depth contents – not necessarily related to Symfony – that you will bring home – after the conference.

I am talking about new technologies that can be integrated with the framework (I tried by giving an overview about our experience with AngularJS), generic best practices (ie. API design) and so on. I actually left the SymfonyCon without too much (technical) inspiration.

(but again, this is the SymfonyCon, so maybe… :))


Well, probably the best part of the conference: I already mentioned elsewhere that food and WiFi were amazing, plus Sensio did a great job in making the speakers feel welcome.

It doesn’t always happen, but when an event is facilitated by the venue / organization / detail-orientation of the organizer you can then spend your time focusing on what really matters (the content) rather than complaining that the WiFi is slow, feel hungry or tired because the venue is 2000 miles away from the nearest, affordable hotel.

What’s next?

Well, Symfony turns ten next year…and will celebrate its most important birthday back in Paris so…hope to see you there!