Elephants In The Clouds: Mastering PHP On Heroku


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Anonymous at 13:27 on 5 Feb 2015

This was a good introduction to the basics of Heroku. For me, the biggest value was in seeing the little bits that Heroku suggests for apps, such as declaring service dependencies like PHP and web server versions in composer.json, and in the build and release process.

I found myself waiting quite a bit as others went through debugging Wifi or environment issues, so there was only an hour and a half or so of useful content.

A few suggestions for future talks:

* Some sort of local cache for packagist would have helped for wifi issues. Or better yet, a git repo with branches for each step of the session. That way, attendees don't have to madly write down code from slides.

* I don't think setting up locals was a good use of time. It would have been better to just do everything live on Heroku. Or, provide pre-configured virtual machines so everyone is on the same setup.

* More of a focus on how to architect your app to work well with Heroku would be great. What are the common pitfalls in moving your app to Heroku? If you have an existing Drupal/Wordpress/Symfony app, what do you need to do to run it well? What types of apps will run poorly on Heroku?

* A section I felt was missing was scaling performance for IO, especially database traffic. It would have been great to learn about how to structure IO in your app and in the Heroku configuration to handle large amounts of authenticated traffic with database writes.

Thanks for the feedback, anonymous.

The repo is a good point. A local cache, like a pre-configured VM, is usually too much of a pain. Some Wifi networks fully isolate clients from one another, and when I brought VMs to tutorials in the past, there was always users that did not have VirtualBox installed or, if they did, then encountered networking trouble etc.

Architecture and scaling aspects are duly noted; will take this into account for the next iteration. Thanks!

I thought this was a great introduction to running PHP applications on Heroku. A previous comment mentioned the wifi issues, so I agree that finding some way to help attendees get up and running quicker without waiting on download time would be ideal.