Going out with a bang! My review of this final chapter of an amazing community conference: LoneStarPHP.


Two weeks ago I returned from the very last LoneStarPHP held in Adisson, Texas. The conference organized by the DallasPHP community was held for the seventh and final time. Sadness grows as I’m writing this review, but I have to continue talking about this amazing event held annually in this massive state.

LoneStarPHP is what you can call a true regional conference where their Texas way of doing things is making this event a true unique experience. The community in Texas is truely amazing as we had very deep discussions on testing and best practices for using PHPUnit on legacy code bases, I even did some free consulting in the hallway to help one out solving their testing issues.

A big round of applause for the organisers as they took extra care of me by putting a coffee cart in front of the venue pouring delicious coffee. That was really awesome!

Epic moments were those when you were talking about security and privacy with Keith Casey in the hallway. This man has truely a gift to make you paranoid within 5 minutes! Add to this conversation the one-and-only Snipeyhead and it’s a long haul about war stories straight from the battlefields in tech.

When I mention LoneStarPHP I cannot ignore the speaker’s dinner at Hard Eight BBQ as this is a truely an experience. Rich flavored briskets, chilli sausages, juicy ribs and spicy chicken poppers… a true delight for any fan of meat.

HardEightBBQ Experience

I got to see a few talks including “Tests should tell a story” by Matthew Machuga, “Effective Code Review” by Jessica Mauerhan, “Discovering Dark Knowledge in the Social Web” by Keith Casey and of course the talk of Mr. PHP Godfather himself, the bag of nails that makes PHP stick, my dear friend Cal Evans titled “Groupies, Roadies, Rockstars”.

I had the honour and pleasure to present my top-rated talk “Dockerize your unit test for faster feedback“.

All in all a superb event! I will miss those folks in Dallas! Over the past years I’ve got to know a bunch of them. I saw them changing jobs and advance in their careers because of the stuff they learned at LoneStarPHP conference. Again, I’m sad to say it was the last amazing experience.

But… at the very last minute of the conference, LongHornPHP announced that they will take over and continue to unite the PHP community in Texas, this time from Austin. So I left with sadness and joy on my route to the next conference.

Michelangelo van Dam

Michelangelo van Dam is a senior PHP architect, PHP community leader and international conference speaker with many contributions to PHP projects and community events.