I really like the Laravel podcast. It’s a (typically) very short podcast covering both development and the Laravel framework. I like this podcast so much that I recommend it to my PHP students. It’s a nice informal conversation between seasoned PHP developers that covers the Laravel framework, PHP and other general development aspects.
The only down side of this show is that there aren’t any show notes (at least not for recent episodes). I found episode 36 to be really good in terms of pragmatic advice to those beginning to code. I think it will be really useful for my programming students which is why I decided to write a quick post providing my version of the show notes for this specific episode.
Things to note:
- The episode is great up to time mark 41:40 (i.e. 41 minutes / 40 seconds) and then it deviates into a discussion about comfortable clothing. Feel free to skip this part. Of course if you want fashion hints from seasoned developers – then feel free to listen 🙂
The episode location is on the laravel podcast site. However, the linked time marks use Overcast.fm since that site provides a web player to specific time marks and it is my podcast player of choice where I listened to this episode. If you have an iPhone you should definitely give Overcast a try – it’s fully featured and free. Of course if you like it – you should donate.
Should you believe anything these guys say? Well – you shouldn’t believe anyone. Take it with a grain of salt and see if it makes sense. I think the perspective of this episode is useful because of the following:
- Taylor: super backend developer and creator of the Laravel framework; very down-to-earth
- Jeffrey: implementer of Laravel for his business (Laracasts) that involves teaching so he he has an interesting perspective on the how-to-learn-programming side
- Matt: started as a ‘designer’ and ended as a front-end developer that now has his own company (so both a developer and business owner perspective)
I’ve arranged these show notes based on new beginner developer questions and the relevant time marks. I’ve paraphrased the questions but you’ll hear the exact question that Matt asks when you listen to the specified time marks. The usual disclaimers apply.
If I want to be a crack Laravel developer and I’m a complete beginner – where would I start? (01:30)
Time mark: 01:30
An interesting discussion of how to get from being a newbie to becoming experienced in Laravel. But it applies to any interesting framework/language.
What should I build when I’m learning? (14:35)
Time mark: 14:35
A good discussion of whether your learning project(s) should be ‘real’ and whether toy projects are the way to go (short answer: yes).
Boot camps: are they worth it? (15:38)
Time mark: 15:38
This frequently comes up in my in-person class. Up to now I didn’t have a great answer but this part of the episode covers this really well both from a what-do-you-learn perspective and from the job search will-an-employer-hire-me perspective.
What are the quintessential books every backend developer should read? (20:52)
Time mark: 20:52
This part of the podcast covers many more books than what a backend developer would use. There’s some dead air in the podcast for this question when Jeffrey speaks. Here are the books that I deciphered (I will update this if I hear back from Taylor/Matt/Jeffrey via twitter for anything that I missed).
- Taylor: (all of these are great – eli4d)
- Jeffrey: (note that there’s a silent portion where Jeffrey was speaking – not sure if he mentioned additional books)
- “The Pragmmatic Programmer” (see link in Taylor’s section above)
- “Clean Coder/Coder” (see link in Jeffrey’s section above)
- Head First Design Patterns
- Even Faster Websites
- Growing Object-Oriented Software, Guided by Tests
- “Practical OO Desgin in Ruby” (see Jeffrey section for link)
- Don’t Make Me Think (great book)
- Extreme Programming
- Working Effectively with Legacy Code
- Are your Lights On
- Nonviolent Communication
- PHP and MySQL Web Development
- all the a book apart books
- How to Win Friends and Influence People
- The Mythical Man Month
- agile software development
- Patterns, Principles, and Practices of Domain-Driven Design
Are there any tricks/pitfalls that you have fallen into as you were learning? (30:41)
Time mark: 30:41
This addresses the Law of the instrument question.
Knowing what you know now is there any one thing you wish you would have known or done when you began to learn programming? (32:36)
Time mark: 32:36
A long time ago I heard the “knowing what you know now” question in a Brian Tracy audio book. It applies to lots of thing including programming.
The clothing question that you can safely skip: is there any piece of clothing that you would fight about if your spouse threw it away? (41:40)
Time mark: 41:40
Thinking of my ripped gray hoodie still makes me sad.
Hopefully you’ve found this useful. Send me a tweet if you did.