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An exciting year

Source: Flickr HansVdb
Each time we're getting close to the end of the year, it's good to reflect on the passed year and stand still at those moments that had a great impact on our lives. In this trend I'm looking back at a very exciting 2013.

January 2013

January has been a very exciting month. First of all the birth of our third son Tycho on January 22, and immediately after PHPBenelux Conference 2013. I remember how I had to head back and forth between the conference, the hospital and home just to be on top of everything.

Tycho van Dam, born January 22, 2013

February 2013

Another exciting month for us as our second son Ares was going to school for the very first time. And just like with Xander's first day at school, I have to admit I was more excited and nervous than Ares was. I can only imagine how big of an impact this must be for Ares.

April 2013

Even though most of April was business as usual, one moment really stood out of all other things: my webinar "Quality Assurance for PHP apps using PHPStorm" for Jetbrains, just a few weeks after I started using PHPStorm because everyone around me recommended it to me.

May 2013

May was php|architect's TEK time in Chicago, USA. An awesome conference under new management of Musketeers. Yes, it was really a great conference where communities got together even more than ever before. Here I gave my talk "UA testing with Selenium and PHPUnit".
Source: Flickr EliW

June 2013

This June was Dutch PHP Conference (DPC) month! Even though I was not a speaker, I attended this conference to get in touch with many local PHP professionals.

August 2013

In August I visited two PHP user groups in Ireland where I gave my workshop "Quality Assurance for PHP applications" at both PHPDublin and PHP Belfast. Besides meeting the local community members and have a good chat with everyone, I also got to know the awesome people at EngineYard and SimplyZesty who made this possible.

The crowd at PHPDublin

September 2013

In September the conference treadmill started again and kicked off in Utrecht, the Netherlands. There I gave 2 talks "PHP Azure, A brand new day" and "UA Testing with Selenium and PHPUnit" at PFCongres.


October 2013

October means PHP Poland, PHPNW and ZendCon. Unfortunately I wasn't able to attend PHPNW, which I still regret looking back at all those great comments of the event, I did made it to PHP Poland and ZendCon.

PHP Poland was an awesome conference and even though most of the sessions were in Polish, the slides were often in English and you were able to follow along. Here I gave my talk "UA testing with Selenium and PHPUnit".

ZendCon was impressively an awesome conference, where not only Zend announced Apigility and Zend Blueprint for continuous delivery but also old and new community members (re)found each other again.

November 2013

November is since last year marked by TrueNorthPHP in Canada, an awesome community conference organised by Peter Meth and Chris "Grumpy" Hartjes. This year it was so great you can call it the "PHPNW of the North-Americas". I really enjoyed giving my "Azure PHP, a bright new day" talk.



A new conference, ZendCon Europe, entered the conference scene, bringing Zend across "the pond" and offer an informational platform for businesses depending on PHP technology within Europe. As it was organised in Paris, it would mean no flying but taking a train instead.

Teaser for the ZendCon Europe, taking place from 18 to 20th of november

December 2013

I think the biggest event here was my small involvement having a community birthday wish for Mr. Cal Evans when he turned 50. Thanks Evan Coury, Kathy Evans and Elizabeth Naramore to be my partners-in-crime to make it all happen.

DayCamp4Developers was an online conference I participated in to present my new talk "Unit testing PHP apps with PHPUnit" besides the heavy-weights in unit testing Chris Hartjes, Jeff Carouth and Ptah Dunbar and hosted by Mr. Cal Evans.


Closing notes

Well, as you can see it has been a very busy and exciting year. Besides these mentioned major events I noticed that the PHP community is really expanding this year. New babies were born in the community: Joshua Thijssen, Ralph Schindler, Jeroen Van Dijk, Thijs Feryn and a whole bunch of other people.

Yes I believe 2013 has been a new start. A new start to get out of the "financial crisis" that is keeping the economy hostage since 2008, a new start to step up and get involved in the community and a new start to step out of your comfort zone.

I wish everyone a very merry Christmas and a wonderful, successful and above all a great 2014!

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