Community also means fun!

“Life is more fun if you play games.” — Roald Dahl

I often say that the PHP Community is not all about PHP and work, its about community, friends and good times. As an expat recently arrived in Amsterdam I found lots of comfort in the group and made new friends that have grown into my closest circles. I also found that when life decided to give me a hard time, these same people were there to lend a hand.

Cards Against HumanityThe is the spirit of community and is what I like to grow and care for wherever I go, its not about learning its about sharing good times and knowledge with a group of like minded people.

In keeping with this we had a wild idea one day, let’s all get together to play games! Aisha quickly volunteered to be the champion behind the idea and we started working out details. We quickly settled on Café Batavia 1920 as our first venue since they have an awesome back room that would be perfect for this.

Turns out we have loads of games so we picked a few of them and in the beginning of october got together for the first Geeks & Games meet up. And it was amazing, the back room echoed with laughter all night, the beer kept coming and we had fun all night, from 19h to 3am.

We also welcomed a few members who had never come to any meet up, even a recently arrived expat from South Africa. It was really great to off these newcomers with the same network and friendliness that i got from the group.

MunchkinBetween games of CAH, Munchkin, Mascarade and Tsuro we had a night full of healthy competition and complete and utter madness. We made new friends and we strengthened already existing friendships, at least that is how it felt to me.

So having decided this was a success, we came to the one obvious conclusion, DO IT AGAIN!

In december we will meet again (reserve the 12th/December!), and hopefully settle into a pattern every 2 months.

User Groups! This is an amazing way to strengthen the unity of your group and introduce new members into the fold, if you want to try it, feel free to get in touch with us and we can share our experience.

Companies! Do you want to associate your brand with bonding and network building? We would love to have a company sponsor drinks and snacks and be part of this unique experience. Get in touch on our website.

Wanna be a champion? Our community is built on the back of volunteers and enablers, if you have an idea you think would work for the group, come join us in making it happen, we will provide you the man-power (and women-power) and support as long as you are willing to captain the boat.

Thank you all who made this possible, see you next time!


AmsterdamPHP Podcast – Episode 1: The new and shiny

podcast-1400The AmsterdamPHP crew is proud to hand you a new participation opportunity and more new content for you to learn from, our podcast! This podcast will be a bar-table style conversation on topics related to the PHP ecosystem, so join us for a listen.

I this episode we dive into the new and upcoming features of PHP 5.5, 5.6 and beyond, tripping on our words, weeping about being stuck in older versions and even run away from discussing the HHVM. Join our semi-sober crew of four for a fun conversation that we hope you can even learn from.

Download the episode and don’t hesitate to leave you opinion in the comments, feel free to say we suck, or if we actually make you laugh, that would be great to know as well. Suggestions of new topics are always welcome!

Listen using the player below, or add this feed to your iTunes library.

Discussed in this episode:

Win a DayCamp 4 Developers #5 Ticket!

AmsterdamPHP believes in investing and forming new speakers to share their knowledge with the community in general. For this reason our stage is always open for new speakers who want to take the first step, and we are always happy to coach and provide feedback in these cases.

In the fifth edition of DC4D, Cal Evans has put together a super team of speakers who will guide you through your first stage experience and beyond. If you have ever wanted to get started as a speaker, this is the place to start.

Of course, once you are done learning over there, we want you to come back and grace our stage with your new and awesome talk. So to help this plan along we will be giving away one ticket for someone to attend DC4D#5 for free! It’s an online conference so that should be no problem for anyone.

How can you win?

It’s simple: “Send out a tweet and tell us why you want to be a speaker or why you think being a speaker is important for a developer’s career, and tag it with #amsterdamPHP” (you must be following @amsterdamPHP)

On Friday the 15th of March we will choose a random tweet and award the prize, so be sure to follow us on twitter so that we can send you a DM about the prize.

Research: Type-safety in PHP


Robert Stoll, an ICT student from Switzerland is researching type safety in PHP for his undergraduate study. This is a very interesting topic and he wants to see how the community deals with this in its day to day development.

The deliverables of the research will be provided in an Open Source Project at the conclusion of the research.

If you want to help, all he needs is 5 to 20 minutes of your time to answer a survey.

More about the project TSPHP.

January 2013 Meeting

MimbeeIts 2013 and this time around the topic on the table is Performance.

Our speaker will be Pascal de Vink, member of the Tweakers team. He will talk about how to optimize your website for speed and performance. This month we will be meeting at Mimbee, we have limited seating so RSVP quick and please make sure to remove your RSVP if you can’t make it.


19:00: Welcome Drinks
19:30 – 20:30: “Let’s speed it up a bit”
20:30 – 20:45: Raffle
20:45: Social, drinks and food.

Speaker: Pascal de Vink

Pascal de Vink has been a software engineer for the past ten years and is trying to focus on constantly improving both himself and others. He started working at Tweakers 1,5 years ago.

Talk: “Let’s speed it up a bit”

It is said that when asking people how a website can be optimised for speed, about 14 answers come up. For both simple HTML sites on shared hosting and advanced multi-server web applications, I’m sharing these answers as strategies to speed up your (php powered) website in this talk.

We got some awesome stuff to give away this month, so make sure you RSVP for the meetup if you’re coming and want a shot at getting it!


Wibautstraat 150
1091 GR, Amsterdam

December Meeting


WEBclusiveThis month’s meeting will be something special! We’ll be teaming up with our friends from the Amsterdam.rb user group to give you a special event that will surely spark some discussion.

The December meeting will have two talks, one selected by each group. Note that (for this time only) this meeting is on a wednesday, instead of our regular thursdays. Due to the increased content, this event will also start earlier than normal.

This event will be sponsored by our friends at WEBclusive.


18:30 – 19:00: Welcome & Drinks
19:00 – 19:45: Talk: Your code sucks, let’s fix it! – Rafael Dohms
19:45 – 20:15: Break – Pizzas!
20:15 – 21:00: Talk: Debugging with Pry – Yorick Peterse
21:00 – 21:15: Raffle
21:15 Social, drinks, snacks.


PHP Talk: Your code sucks, let’s fix it! – Rafael Dohms

How do you measure the quality of your code? Performance and testing are just one aspect of code, in order to meet deadlines and make maintenance quicker you also need your code to be readable, decoupled and generally easier to comprehend and work with. This talk will go over tips and exercises to help you identify trouble areas, refactor them and train you to write better code in future projects. Come make your code look and function better.

Ruby Talk: Debugging with Pry – Yorick Peterse

I aim to talk about what Pry does, what makes it cool (features, ease of use, etc) and why people should use it to debug code instead of relying on clunky tools such as IRB or Kernel#puts. Examples range from simple ones such as defining code to more complex ones such as inserting “breakpoints”, listing variables and retrieving documentation.


As usual, we’ve got some awesome stuff to give away. Software licenses, books, and a ticket to one of the best (if not the best) PHP conference in Europe.

For more info and updates, be sure to check out Meetup.

November Meeting

In our November meeting, the topic will be REST!

Our speaker will be Marc Ypes, one of CakePHP’s core developers. He will guide us through the important parts of REST, like HTTP headers, caching, authentication and how we should handle them. We are also very excited to work together with this month’s host: Tweakers. Various members of their team have been active contributers to AmsterdamPHP and its great to finally visit their offices, they will of course be taking care of the food and beers!


19:00: Welcome Drinks
19:30 – 20:30: “Create a RESTful API”
20:30 – 20:45: Raffle
20:45: Social, drinks and food.

Speaker: Marc Ypes

Marc Ypes is a salesman of car parts. In his spare time he loves to contribute to open source PHP projects. He has been using PHP for 4 years as a hobby and became core developer of the CakePHP framework 1,5 years ago.

Talk: “Create a RESTful API”

REST was first described in 2000, but just recently started gaining popularity over SOAP and RPC-style api’s. This talk will go through the important parts of REST style API’s, including topics like HTTP headers, caching, authentication and more.


We got some awesome stuff to give away this month, so make sure you RSVP for the meetup if you’re coming and want a shot at getting it!

VENUE: Tweakers

Mt. Lincolnweg 40
1033 SN Amsterdam
Tweakers is on the other side of the IJ, in the NDSM Warf, so we recommend you take the ferry there, you have two options to get there:
Behind Central Station (map): take the left-most ferry (906)
At Tasmanstraat (map): take the left-most ferry (903)

Once you are on the other side, walk along the shore to the left until you find this building and that’s it!

October Meeting

In our October meeting, our topic is Object-oriented Design. Our speaker will be Freek Lijten, who will tell us how we can use the SOLID principles to create better designed code.

This month’s meeting is sponsored by our good friends at PeerReach. Their awesome office in the center of Amsterdam will be the venue for this month’s meeting, and they’ll be providing us with snacks and drinks.

19:00: Welcome Drinks
19:30 – 20:30: “Improve Your Software with SOLID Code”
20:30 – 20:45: Raffle
20:45: Social, drinks and food.

Speaker: Freek Lijten
Freek Lijten is currently working as a developer for Procurios. He has been writing code professionally for almost 5 years and privately ever since his first encounter with BASIC. His special interests are software architecture and patterns.

Talk: “Improve Your Software with SOLID Code”
You might have heard of the acronym SOLID and the five principles it consists of. Sadly the concepts are very abstract and can be difficult to really understand, while they are so important to writing good object oriented code. This talk will not only deal with the theory behind SOLID and explain why SOLID is important. Better yet, we will be looking at code (lots of it!) and how it can be improved by applying one of the SOLID principles.

We got some awesome stuff to give away this month, so make sure you RSVP for the meetup if you’re coming and want a shot at getting it!

September Meeting


Better late than never, so we have locked down the details of our September meeting. In our September meeting, the topic is now “Quality Assurance”.

Our speaker will be Willem Stuursma, he will give us a inside look at how Continuous Integration happens inside of Mollie with all of their PHP projects.

This month we are once again back with our good friends at True, so if you were there for our first meeting you know they are wonderful hosts. It will all go down on the 20th of September, you can see details on the meetup page

We also managed to secure a few O’Reilly books to raffle them off, so stick around until the end of the talk, and make sure you have RSVP’d on Meetup!


19h: Welcome Drinks
19h30 – 20h30: Continuous Integration at Mollie”
20h30: Social, drinks, food and raffles!.

Speaker: Willem Stuursma

Willem works as a developer at Mollie and has worked at Hyves in Amsterdam and at iWink in Groningen. He likes back-end development, as well as developing for mobile devices and equally loves product and programming.

Talk: “Continuous Integration at Mollie”

In this talk, I will discuss our experiences at Mollie with setting up the Jenkins Continuous Integration server for all our PHP projects. The talk will be aimed at developers with little or no experience with CI.

We look forwardto seeing you again this month! We are looking for our October hosts and speaker, if you are interested, get in touch with us!


True Office (find on Google Maps)
Coöperatiehof 16
1073 JR Amsterdam

New Sponsor and August Meeting

I’m thrilled to announce our new Sponsor: The Next Web and Kings of Code. Well known in Amsterdam and globally especially for the Kings of Code conference it is great to have them on board and a great addition to our team.

TNW will kickoff by hosting our August meeting at their offices. This month we will have Joshua Thijssen, renown PHP Speaker and upcoming author of “A guide to PHP Standard Library”, bringing up a very important topic: Security. In his talk “A history on security and how to win the battle”, Joshua will make us rethink how we design our applications and make sure security is in the from the beginning.

Last month we had a full house, so make sure to secure your spot by RSVPing on our meetup page. As usual our schedule is as follows:

  • 19h: Welcome Drinks
  • 19h30 to 20h30: A history on security and how to win the battle” by Joshua Thijssen
  • 20h30 onwards: Social, drinks and food, mingle and get to know new people

Additional information

Speaker: Joshua Thijssen

Joshua Thijssen is a freelance consultant, systems administrator anddeveloper. His passion lies in designing and working with complexprojects, working on high scalability and availability projects andhelping other to achieve higher standards in both coding and thinking.
He’s the author of the upcoming book “A guide to PHP Standard Library” and is regular speaker on both webdevelopment and system administration conferences. He is currently certified as a Zend PHP5, PHP5.3, Zend Framework, LPIC2, Ubuntu, MySQL DBE & MySQL DBA and has a wide range of programming skills. You can find his technical blogs on

Talk: “A history on security and how to win the battle”

Keeping our systems secure is a thing that already starts at the lowest levels of your CPUs. Security measurement after security measurement must be passed before your software or webapp is actually allowed to run or your data is allowed to be processed. And yet every day we keep hearing more and more stories about security leaks and data breaches.
Why is this happening? Are we such bad programmers? Are we not capable enough to write “secure web applications”? We are loosing this battle if we don’t change our security model and the way we deal with security radically. Here’s how…

Venue: The Next Web

The Next Web is one of the world’s largest online technology publications and organiser of events like The Next Web Conference and Kings of Code. At their Amsterdam HQ theyalso run other (PHP) projects like Twitter Counter, Paydro and Qwitter.
Nieuwe Achtergracht 17
1018XV, Amsterdam