12 must-see talks if you want to become a better Laravel developer

Janez Cergolj • November 12, 2021

In my opinion, at least. :)

As a Laravel developer, I've spent a lot of time learning from some of the best Laravel developers. Do names such as Adam Wathan, Colin DeCarlo, Jason McCreary ring a bell? They should. If they don't, here is a quick fix. My list of 12 fantastic talks that you could learn a ton from.

Testing

Test-Driven Laravel
by Adam Wathan
An excellent intro into TDD. TDD seems easy until you need to talk or test DB queries, generate PDF, deal with APIs and so on. He will lear you how to do all those stuff. Even better and more it depth is his course. A must-watch for every developer who doesn't know where to start practising TDD.

Lies You've Been Told About Testing
by Adam Wathan
Jet another great talk from Adam about testing. Stop worrying about architecture. Start emphasising the details.

Code refactoring, patterns

Patterns That Pay Off
by Matt Stauffer
Matt talks about different patterns that we don't think about when building an application. Then, he dives into picking better code patterns by reviewing code bases.

Writing code that lasts
by Raphael Dohms
Writing code that survives the test of time and self-judgment is a matter of clarity and simplicity. This is a talk about growing, learning and improving our code with calisthenics, readability and good design.

Everything I Ever Needed To Know About Web Dev, I Learned From My Twitter Timeline
by Colin DeCarlo
Somehow lengthy title, however still worth watching. Colin DeCarlo talks about some ideas on cleaning up code in your application gained from "fire tweets" on twitter.

Cruddy by Design
by Adam Wathan
There is never enough controllers. From @dhh tweet: More controllers doing less work obviates the need for any other fancy patterns. In this talk, Adam shows how you can move code from one controller into multiple ones.

Design Patterns with Laravel
by Colin DeCarlo
Colin talks entertainingly about three patterns: adapter, strategy and factory one.

Resisting Complexity
by Adam Wathan
Why is it OK that a User can be saved? Because according to Adam, methods are affordances. Furthermore, don't be afraid of facades, he says. But, to be fair, I think this statement was more relevant in 2018 than today. I think facades are well accepted nowadays.

LaraconUs 2018
by Colin DeCarlo
Having the correct tools is not the same as using the tools correctly. Learn how to use Laravel tools correctly. Some more tips on how your code could be better and more readable.

Practicing YAGNI
by Jason McCreary
This talk is about how to avoid overengineering and why you ain't gonna need it is good. Jason also has a BaseCode course. It is about code refactoring. Do check it out. A field guide containing real-world practices to help you write code that's less complex and more readable.

Laracon US
by Sandi Metz
She is one of the gurus in the Rails world. Different language, same rules. Do you know what a code smell is? Really, name 5? Spoiler, nobody can.

MySql

Eloquent Performance Patterns
by Jonathan Reinink
If MySql and not your thing, you can learn a lot here. Even better, Jonathan shows how to write more complex and optimised queries with Laravel Eloquent. Finally, if you like the talk, here is an entire course dedicated to it.

Happy watching & learning.

Disclaimer: nobody paid me to promote those courses here. I bought and watched all of them. And I learned a lot. I generally think those courses are worth paying for.