PHPCamp is the biggest PHP conference in India and happens in Pune every year. Why should you go?
If you’re a student interested in web development, you should go to find out what’s going on with the most popular web development language in the world.
If you’re a motivated student who would like to do some interesting projects, and are looking for a mentor/guide/advisor from Industry, PHPCamp would be a good place to find some
If you’re a web developer and would like to interact with other passionate web developers and find out what interesting things they’re working on, then the hallway conversations at PHPCamp should attract you
If you’re a non-technical founder of a startup and are looking for technical co-founders, this is the place to be.
If you’re looking for a development partner, or a small company to which you’d like to outsource web development work, then PHPCamp is the place to find the most interesting ones
What is PHPCamp?
It is a barcamp for those interested in PHP. A barcamp is essentially a conference but without a pre-determined schedule or invited speakers. Anyone can attend. And on the morning of the conference, there is a whiteboard put up with all the open slots (for speaking), and anybody who has an interesting topic can write down their name and the topic and sign up as a speaker.
You might have noticed that PHP is taking over the world, unless you live in a cave, or work for a large company.
A lot of the world’s biggest websites are built using PHP – Facebook, Wikipedia, Digg, Flickr. And try to do anything interesting on the web today, and you’ll almost be forced to do at least part of it in PHP. For example, it is very likely that you’ll need to write a facebook application for whatever you are doing – and guess what language is best for that? Yes, PHP.
If you’re someone who’re only mainly familiar .NET or Java, now would be a good time to move out of the age of dinosaurs and come into modern times, and find out more about PHP. And what better forum to do that than PHPCamp, the biggest PHP conference in India (actually, the biggest (un)conference in India). Last year, Pune had the first PHPCamp. 1200+ people registered for it, and over 700 showed up.
So why go to PHPCamp? Because whether you like it or not, whether you’ve planned it or not, there’s PHP in your future. And the best way to find out more about something is by interacting with people who are passionate about it. And that, you’ll find in abundance at PHPCamp. People who love PHP. For example, people like Amit Kumar who created PHPCamp.net, a news site about PHP written using PHP.
If you are already into PHP, then PHPCamp is your way to find out the latest buzz in PHP. What’s new with CodeIgniter (the framework that allows you to create websites very quickly using PHP)? Would you like to meet a Joomla Expert, someone who’se website shows up as the second hit on a google search for ‘Joomla Expert’? He’s a Punekar and will be there. How about someone who has created 50 drupal websites in the past year or so, including one in Chinese? He‘ll be there too. Have you heard of modx, the new, very fast, content management system written in PHP? No? Well, then you should certainly attend PHPCamp.
If you’re a student, especially a 2nd or 3rd year student of computer science, events like this are the best place to find interesting people in industry who are actually interested in working with bright and motivated students. In 4th year, when you’re desperate for projects, or jobs, it will be too late. Instead start attending events like PHPCamp, and you’ll form relationships that will be very useful for you later. Attend the talks, and if you liked the topic or the speaker, walk up to him/her and tell them that you are a student and would like to do a project with them. It does NOT matter that you know nothing right now. Low knowledge and high enthusiasm is any day better than the vice versa. It does not matter that you are just in 2nd or 3rd year. It does not matter what college you’re from, or what degree you’re pursuing. And no, contrary to widespread beliefs, industry people do not bite or eat students. So you don’t need to be afraid of talking to them. What’s the worst that can happen?
Did I mention that it is free? That’s right, anyone can register, and attend without having to pay anything. Just show up. Tell them, PuneTech sent you…
PHPCamp in Pune this Saturday, with a reported 700+ campers, was easily the biggest barcamp-style event in India. There were people coming in from all over the country, including groups of students from various colleges (not necessarily from Pune). Unfortunately, I missed it, and I’m trying to make up for it by rounding-up all the blog posts about PHPCamp that have appeared over the weekend. I’ll update this post as more pop up. The PHPCamp website has a comprehensive list of all blog posts before and after the event.
Tarun Chandel one of the godfathers of all barcamp style get-togethers in Pune was also on hand and has uploaded a bunch of photographs of PHPCamp on his photoblog. You can see how crowded the rooms were, with probably more people standing than sitting.
PHPCamp is a ad-hoc gathering for PHP community. It similar to barcamp, but more focused towards PHP based web application development. This means that anyone can come to PHPCamp and participate. There is no set agenda – the agenda gets decided at the venue. If that sounds weird to you, you should read up on barcamps now.
PHP enthusiasts in Pune are organizing a barcamp focused towards PHP based web application development, in September 2008. (If you don’t know what a barcamp camp is, now is a good time to find out.) What started out as a small initiative at getting together the PHP community in Pune for an informal gathering is, judging from the initial response, fast snowballing into a major all-India conference.
It is still very early, and the details are all still being worked out. Since this is an unconference, it is all volunteer driven, and anyone can participate, and more importantly, anyone can join the organizing committee. Which means that if you are interested in PHP, you should seriously consider helping out with the effort. They are still looking for speakers (and due to the unconference nature of the event, this will continue until the day of the event). More importantly they are looking for sponsors, to smoothen the process of hosting the event. This means that if you are a company (or know a company) that wants to get visibility with the most enthusiastic PHP developers in the country, you should sponsor this event.
In any case, join the mailing list to keep tabs on what the organizers are planning, and register yourself for attending the event, so they have an idea of how many people to expect.