About the Author

Chris Shiflett

Hi, I’m Chris: entrepreneur, community leader, husband, and father. I live and work in Boulder, CO.

Our First PHPCon

This April, the PHP community is going to descend upon Nashville, Tennessee for its inaugural PHPCon. Judging by the speakers and attendees, it's going to be a conference to remember and one that will be talked about for some time. It's being organized primarily by Ben Ramsey, Lisa Denlinger, and Nick Sloan, with plenty of help and support from the rest of the PHP community.

This is a conference I've been hoping would emerge for years. Conferences organized for profit have their place, but the heart and soul of the PHP community, and the open source community in general, is not profit-driven. From PHPCon's about page:

We believe the PHP community is just about the friendliest group around, and we're going to be sharing stories of successes, failures, and lessons learned along the way. Because this is our first conference, we're hoping you'll join us, roll up your sleeves, and help make this something we can all be proud of.

This is your chance to support a good thing, and you get so much in return. Those who register will be supporting the conference financially as well as supporting the people who make it happen. Thanks to some generous sponsors, the all-inclusive pass to PHPCon is only $300, and it includes:

  • Both tutorials on Thursday
  • An entire day of talks on Friday
  • Free food, snacks, and conversation
  • The chance to meet the people who make PHP

This is probably the best lineup of PHP speakers I've ever seen, and I've been to a lot of PHP conferences. Have you ever been to a conference with Rasmus Lerdorf, Andrei Zmievski, Sean Coates, Paul Reinheimer, and Terry Chay? I haven't. Have you ever met the people behind PHPDeveloper.org, Phorum, 24 Ways, Smarty, Spaz, CakePHP, Lithium, or Zend Framework? They're all going to be there, along with people from Flickr, Etsy, Automattic, and SourceForge.

The tutorials are free for everyone who is registered, and you get to choose from Lorna Mitchell talking about web services, Helgi Þormar Þorbjörnsson talking about caching, Joël Perras talking about Lithium, and Matthew Weier O'Phinney talking about Zend Framework.

All of this is happening in a really cool space with a rather dumb name (aVenue). :-)

If I sound a little bit jealous, it's because I am. I'm not going to be able to make it this year, but I genuinely hope it's a huge success, and I can't wait to hear all about it. If you're lucky enough to be there, be sure to get the Pot Pourri at the Spaghetti Factory and the Kansas City Strip and Demos'. That'll make me extra jealous.

Have fun, learn lots, and make something great.

About this post

Our First PHPCon was posted on Fri, 11 Mar 2011. If you liked it, follow me on Twitter or share:


1.Nicholas Sloan said:


Thanks for the excellent post. It's a shame you can't make to the conference, but I'm sure you'll be hearing all about it afterward.

Fri, 11 Mar 2011 at 18:07:21 GMT Link

2.Lisa Denlinger said:

Thanks Chris! I'm really excited about the conference and glad to hear you speak so highly of our efforts. It's so great to be able to give back to such a fantastic community. Hopefully more people will comment here to let us know their thoughts.


Fri, 11 Mar 2011 at 18:43:56 GMT Link

3.Michael Peters said:

I'm glad to see PHP doing community conferences. I enjoy them a lot more than corporate conferences. They are more relaxed and more real.

But $300 seems like a lot. The Perl community puts on YAPC every year for around $100. Why is PHP so much more expensive?

Mon, 14 Mar 2011 at 18:48:03 GMT Link

4.Chris Shiflett said:

Hi Michael,

$300 seems like a lot. The Perl community puts on YAPC every year for around $100.

That's a fair point. I've been to YAPC, and I loved it. One big difference is that YAPC doesn't pay for speakers' travel and lodging. PHPCon does.

Other differences are that YAPC doesn't provide food, tends to be held at venues that are inexpensive or free, has more people to spread the costs, and things like that.

PHPCon's venue is awesome, and it certainly wouldn't have so many amazing speakers if they all had to pay their own way. I agree that $300 is a lot for some people, but I would gladly pay that if there was any way I could make it to Nashville.

Mon, 14 Mar 2011 at 19:05:04 GMT Link

5.Alex Patin said:

Looking forward to the conference myself. A community PHP conference is just what we need here. There's going to be such an incredible amount of people from such great companies and organizations - I really can't wait!

We'll be sure to let you know how it is Chris. Wish you could be there!

Thu, 14 Apr 2011 at 03:49:33 GMT Link

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