What makes Laravel so special?
Matt Stauffer

Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic. -- Arthur C. Clarke

That's how myths came from.

And what some people mean is what makes Laravel so magical?

If you're thinking about three types of Laravel Magic

Why are there 900 people here in the PlayStation Theater

"What makes Laravel sell out the PlayStation theater?"

Most important answer: "Laravel is changing people's lives"

Glad to be going last to be able to hear conversations in the hallways. Like, Justin who is so new to space being able to talk about Laravel and how accepting the community is

Story time, Twitter break

Some of them fit into pre-made ideas that I had about how it changed, and some of them were different. Learned a lot about people and them

Tweet from Jul 21, asking about how Laravel has changed your life

Someone whose life opportunities were transformed

Someone who was leaving for Ruby/etc

Someone whose business was possible

You, the attendee

Taylor's story

Yes, Laravel changes people's lives. That's a good thing and allows us to want it.

Laravel is changing people's lives because...

Five important reasons why


A good community promotes a sense of belonging, feeling like you're a part of something. This is an intentional feeling, affects how docs are developed, features are developed, and they've been thought about. Laravel's a good tool, sure but it's also got a great community

Kindness: Everybody in the community follows the Bill & Ted rule of life to "Be Excellent To Each Other"

Teaching and Sharing: Stack Overflow, Blogs, Books, GitHub, Twitch, Video Courses, Twitter, IRC/Slack/Discord, Meetups

Two angles: Helping as a means to an end of making money vs helping for the sake of helping

Open Source: Just under 2k contributors to Laravel, Packalyst packages. Community giving back to each other

Inclusivity: X number of countries, no pretense about PHP devs or JS devs or WP devs. RAD (rapid application development) and CQRS in the same community. Rush to be the teacher = rush to be a helper. We don't seem to be pretentious about our tools ("Aww, how adorable, you're using WordPress").


Docs are really significant, usually it's the first interaction someone has with us. Huge entry point. If the docs weren't helpful or welcoming or accessible)

I found a new project but the docs don't show me how to actually use it so wtf -- Adam Wathan on Twitter

Developer Happiness

The easiest solution wins -- Taylor Otwell, interview with Justin Jackson

Developer happiness from download to deploy (unofficial Laravel slogan for a while)

Happy developers make the best code.

When you hit "Send" and it just works and you just got "...yes!"

"I'm really annoyed with how hard it is to host a site locally..."...and so they built Laravel Valet.

Developer Growth

Criticisms include "too easy". One of the things I realized is it's easy to use but easy to do advanced things. Lots of folks said they learned how to be a better developer by using Laravel. It's also teaching! Like queues, unit testing, containers, etc. You don't have to know them all to start using Laravel, but you can still use them as you need them and stay within the space


Taylor had a vision for the community, docs, new tech, new things. Vapor is relatively unique

How do we keep it magic for the next eight years?

Step one: keep doing the same stuff

Who taught me? Who helped me become the dev I am? They aren't on stage, but there's space for new blood and to share opportunity. No need to be entrenched! Finding a way to be less entrenched, avoid cliques

When learning/helping someone else learn, but if docs are unclear, try and make the docs better for someone else.

Favorite thing about an SDK. Let's write what we want to use and what we want to consume. Write the API for how you'd want to consume it, then implement it to work like that.

"Hey, I learned this new thing. Check it out!" Try and keep sharing new things

Vision, I don't know if I'll use LiveWire, but I'm really happy that it's possible. Vision to not stop where we are and be content, but keep going for more.

Try some new things

Don't want to just keep up with new trends, but also innovate! Not just what RoR did five years ago, but stuff where other projects can look to Laravel for inspiration. Listen to new blood, ease the on-ramp for Laravelship

With Vapor, I want people to be proud of PHP. This is the first serverless platform for any language with this feature set (assets, databases, cache, queues, mail) all integrated into one cohesive pictures. Trying to do my part to make the next 25 years of PHP glorious. -- Taylor Otwell

Use it or not... @calebporzio's LiveWire is the kind of outside the box thinking that I love about Laravel people -- Taylor Otwell

We can be a force to make being proud to be a Laravel developer or a PHP developer! We shouldn't be ashamed about it

Ease the on-ramp

Right now, very open to PHP developers, but opportunity to help reach out to other developers in other languages

Introducing Onramp (onramp.dev) to help new developers figure out what to learn to be able to be a darn good Laravel developer by the end. Tool to allow folks to enter this space

Introducing Laravel Podcast Season 4...which has been in progress for about a year. For "enough interview, gimme technical talk!" Good news, that's what that'll be.