Laravel - My Journey

March 13, 2017

Laravel is a framework, that has gained tremendous traction over the past few years, and for very good reason. Althoug there a ton of resources to learn more about it (which I will link to at the bottom), what I want to write about is my journey with it.

I first encoutered Laravel in it's early stages, at the time I was looking for a framework to help speed up the development of a custom internal system for the company I worked for. Since this was for one of the main projects and the one that was responsible for the bulk of the revenue I had to pick a more supported and mature framework as such I went with CodeIgniter, the software I built back in the days is still in use to this day, it has morphed into this complicated thing, due to lack of maintenance and rushing of features with no proper direction and also lack of design when other developers came on board and worked on it. It's something that although I was proud of at the time and still am for the fact that it has withstood the growth and different direction the company took, it is something that's very ugly to look at or to work with at this point in time.

For some time however I was stuck in this limbo, supporting the application stuck on this old codebase and not moving forward. This was not very good for my continuing growth as a developer.

I thought to myself it's time to get things moving and for this to be re-written to better suit the needs of the company as they evolved, such as dealing with about 30 to 40 million visitors per day, but to also allow me to gain back the love for the work I do.

It was at this point that I re-discovered Laravel (at version 5) and after trying it out for a bit was blown away by what it had become, it's an amazing framework that does exactly what it set out to do which boils down to transforming a developer into a code artisan with the tools to develop an application very fast based on beautiful easy to read code that does the job and does it well. The community I found thriving around Laravel was amazing, helpful, supportive and ready to lend a hand whenever needed. Although with high level of documentation we only really need to reach out for those hard to solve problems, a lot of times not really related to the framework itself.

So I went on a journey to update myself to the modern world, and at the same time push with the company to re-write the application using Laravel. Unfortunately by now the company which was but a startup when I joined had become too complex and anything needed to be approved and planned and this and that, the freedom we had to create things before which allowed me to create a couple of projects making me directly responsible for the systems of about 80% of the revenue, was gone, and with it my ability to get things done in a creative way.

It took a long time but finally they agreed to jump on the Laravel framework, but starting with small projects, so I was finally able to put my skills to work, and developed some internal tools using this amazing framework.

I became the go to Laravel person in the company although I am by no means an expert, but I do have an ability to learn and adapt fairly fast to new things. I helped my co-workers learn about it, and get better at writting code The Laravel Way.

If you're interested in learning more about it, the following resources will help you:

These resources will be a great starting place that will keep you busy for hours on end, and are amongst the best you can find to learn Laravel.

Posted: Mar 13, 2017