CakeFest 2008, Day Two

I'm sitting in the airport in Orlando, waiting for my flight to Charlotte (which is delayed about 40 minutes as this point) so I thought I'd talk about what I saw on the second day of CakeFest.

PhpNut's keynote was, well, PhpNut was having problems with his presentation (his notes for the slides weren't showing up for him) but he did a good job of talking about where he started out with CakePHP and his thoughts on where it's going. Specifically he mentioned how Cake 2.0 was going to be PHP 5 only, and more likely 5.3 specific as they planned on leveraging the upcoming support (or is it in there already?) for namespaces in PHP. Sure, you can use it on older versions of PHP 5 that don't support it, but you won't be able to benefit from the namespaces.

Then we broke down into two "tracks", API and GUI. After the keynote I sat in on Nate's talk about building REST services with CakePHP 1.2, which was very informative and showed me just how hard Nate had been working to make those changes possible. However, the end of the talk featured some fireworks as one of the crowd members took exception to Nate characterizing SOAP as being (and I'm paraphrasing here) stupid and useless. During the lunch break afterwards, the discussion about SOAP vs. REST continued at the table I was sitting it, with the same person claiming that once Web 2.0 got "serious" that it would absolutely require SOAP.

Well, I dunno about you but I'm of the opinion that just because something is using SOAP doesn't make it serious. REST is great for lots of different applications, and to say that REST has no place in any sort of "serious" web application is just, I dunno, elitist and pig-headed. Look, the truth of the matter is this: if you want to talk to other applications in different programming languages and web environments, well, you have to use whatever API's the *creator* of that application has chosen. If it's REST, don't start bitching to me about how you want SOAP. If I don't want to create a SOAP interface to my app, you are shit out of luck. This idea that there is somehow a split between "serious" and "non-serious" web applications is just snobbery in another form.

So, after lunch I watched Felix's talk on CakePHP + jQuery and World Domination. One of the things I like about going to these conferences is that I am always impressed by the level of skill of the people I meet. I feel like I'm constantly the stupidest person there (which may be true) and their youth and energy and out-and-out mad skillz make me appreciative of all the tools they create so lazy bastards like me can build things for money. My hats off to those guys.

For the rest of the time I spent it trying to fixed a messed-up git conflict (I have no idea what I did but I'll be more careful next time) and tweaking on some new features for the baseball web site, mainly consisting of refactoring some code to do the standings and learning to exploit the power of Set::extract (don't worry Felix, you're gonna get that email like I promised.

But of course, the best part of the conference is the people I got to meet and hang out with. I appologize to anyone I miss here, but I want to thank the following:

  • Sonicbaker - easiest roomate ever, except for the fact you snored like a chainsaw
  • Felix, Tim and Timo - always good to hang out with the Germans and practice all those language skills I learned as a kid
  • Travis Cline, Ryan Peterson, Neal the English Guy (or is it Neil?), Forrest - conversation was good and I'm glad I entertain you guys with my blog postings and flame-bait postings on the mailing list
  • Mariano - your rousing stories of kidnappings and being shot at by 10 year olds in Argentina make me want to rush right down there!
  • Jeff "Don't call me phishy!" - despite all my efforts to have you do an edition of The Show at CakeFest, I left before it could happen...
  • PhpNut - always good to talk to you even if the professional relationship didn't work out we can still be nice to each other in social situations :)
  • Nate - big shock to find you on the same flight to Orlando from Charlotte, and I always enjoy our conversations no matter what medium...and don't take offense at you making fun of me because I'm from Kanuckistan
  • and finally Garrett - thanks for inviting me to speak, thanks for taking care of me during a time when money is supertight, and I look forward to the next CakeFest in the US