Foundations Workshop


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I popped in for a few minutes to see what was going on, and I saw a lot of learning happening. I have know doubts that the attendees found this workshop to be extremely helpful.

The curriculum is a good introduction to PHP. Given the slow WiFi, I was grateful for the complimentary flash drive that contained all of the files we needed.

The difficulties that I saw were primarily in getting everyone's development environment set up. Vagrant is a great choice for modern machines, but there were a few older laptops that may or may not have had the option to enable VT-X in the BIOS. Perhaps for future workshops, a fallback of XAMPP and MAMP should be provided.

Davey did a great job of calmly walking us through the lessons and explaining concepts when questions were raised. Elizabeth's infectious enthusiasm for web security made us all fear evil monkeys (aka: malicious users). Matt Frost and Michelle Sanver did a great job in their support role, though I would have loved to hear more from them, too.

Thanks for open sourcing the curriculum, I plan to introduce it to my local PUG as an option for some of our future workshops.

Extremely valuable experience! Couldn't recomend this more.

I did not attend this session, but heard from many of my developers who did that the first half of the day was spend debugging environment issues for attendees on PCs.

With multiple presenters covering this session, it would have been more beneficial to split the group having environment issues into a sub-group to troubleshoot while keeping the lesson going as scheduled for the rest of the attendees. By stopping the session to debug individual environment issues, everyone else's time was being wasted.

Better planning for these scenarios would make this session even more valuable for PHP newcomers.

Having walked myself through similar programs like RailsGirls & RailsBridge, I'm so happy to see PHPBridge finally taking off. I found the curriculum to be a great introduction to PHP, and the 1-on-1 coaching was immeasurably helpful. The conference wifi did slow things down, but that's to be expected.

Anonymous at 16:13 on 28 Apr 2014

I joined this workshop on the second day - I'm not new to PHP, so I didn't think a beginner's course was what I needed, but many of the other talks were over my head, so when I heard that the workshop was continuing, I decided to jump in.

The teaching technique was great - it may seem tedious to refactor the same code over and over in multiple steps, but that made sure we understood what each change was really doing. And it will equip us to recognize existing code that might be similar to one of the intermediate stages.

And Davey not only has solid knowledge and a way of explaining things clearly, but he also can quickly recognize the level of each of his students and respond appropriately. If I cross paths with him at a future event where he is teaching or presenting something, I will be sure to attend.

The only suggestion for improvement is to pad the time plan to expect issues that need to be resolved one by one. In two days we did not finish a one-day curriculum. The personal care is good - I'm not saying that you should reduce a hands-on workshop to a cold lecture or leave students to fend for themselves. But you could either: (a) increase the time, (b) reduce the amount of material, or (c) have helpers working with individual issues while the main teaching progresses - which of those is possible or appropriate will of course depend on the situation (number of students, number of instructors, available time, etc.).

I think it would be beneficial to 4 parts:
1. Intro to PHP(using xamp)- CRUD app using PHP, MySQL, and html.
2. Frameworks - Update/rewrite the app with Bootstrap (GUI) and Zend or Laravel(MVC).
3. Security - Filter inputs, escape outputs, prepare SQL statements, basic XSS.
4. Stack components - Install an configure Apache, PHP, MySQL and maybe even setup virtual hosting.

I left more details with the Lone Star PHP 2014 email questionnaire.