Time to Code Smart!

Laravel 5 is on the way, and with it, much excitement. As there very well should be! Taylor has worked his butt off bringing us some exciting new features that we'll all be playing with over the next year or more.

Since version 3 of Laravel, the framework has always had a "Code" book by myself. The documentation for the framework provides a great source of reference for those working day to day with the framework, but my books have always had a different goal. They exist to inspire people to enjoy the code that they write, and to build great things.

My books have no entry barrier, everyone is welcome, and everyone is equal. It's important that a resource like this exists for a framework to be accessible to all.

Laravel 3 had "Code Happy", an accidental book that was more successful than I could have ever imagined. This title spurred a new love for writing, and gave me the courage to share my knowledge with others.

When Laravel 4 "hit the shelves" it was accompanied by "Code Bright". This book was my most successful to date. It absolutely stormed the Leanpub sales charts, and still remains at the top spot for a number of categories.

Well that time has come around for a new major version of Laravel, and there must always be a "Code" book to accompany it. Tonight I'd like to make an announcement.

Code Smart

Code Smart, will be my next Laravel title, dedicated to Laravel 5. It will contain all the tips, tricks and guides you need to get to work with Laravel's components, and the Laravel 5 way of thinking.

So why a new book? Laravel 4 is still a highly popular version of Laravel, and people should always have a resource for learning it. For that reason I'll still be maintaining Code Bright. Code Smart will be the book sitting on your desk if you wish to venture into the new world of Laravel 5.

As developers, we're taught 'DRY' (Don't Repeat Yourself), and so I'll be putting this into practice with Code Smart. Where components are similar, it will re-use the content of Code Bright. It simply makes no sense to completely rewrite a chapter on "Validation" if the content is still applicable. However, these chapters will be brought up to speed with the new formatting of the book, and contain new and exciting features that have been included with version 5 of the framework. It will be the next evolution of Code Bright, with a whole bunch of extras!

Laravel 5 has a whole new way of thinking about the framework dependencies we use in our application. This means that even while making use of some of the component chapters from Code Bright, there's still a lot of work involved in re-structuring the content to suit new practices, and ensuring that all chapters are up to date with the changes introduced in L5.

The holding page for Code Smart is now available at //leanpub.com/codesmart and I hope that you're as excited about the release as I am! I'm not at a stage where I want to give the project a release date yet, but I'll be sure to keep you updated!

Code Bright

At over 400 pages of Laravel goodness, Code Bright has been more than I could have ever hoped for. I'd like to take this opportunity to thank all of my readers, reviewers, everyone who has submitted bug reports, and the Laravel team for promoting it. You all share in it's success.

I've felt for a while now that Code Bright is complete. It offers everything that you need to get building apps with Laravel. The chapters that I've added recently have only been driven by individuals asking for more information. It's an evolving book, and so I'm happy for it to change when it needs to.

Saying that, with it's complete state. I'll soon be closing off "the ending" (maybe I should kill off a few characters first?) of Code Bright. I'll still be maintaining it for fixes, and where appropriate I'll be "back porting" chapters from Code Smart if they are compatible with version 4 of the framework.

I hope you've really enjoyed the journey that we've taken with Code Bright over the last year or so. Thank you so much for being involved.


PHPandas is my "pure" PHP book for people who've never written code before. It's around 90% done, so you'll hear more about it soon. Which leads me nicely on to something exciting that I like to call...

PHP for everyone

It gives me great pleasure to announce that Code Smart and PHPandas will be part of a series of books that I'm writing that I like to call 'PHP for everyone'.

PHP is a late-blooming language, and for it to continue being useful we need to excite and entice newcomers to the language. There are many PHP books out there, but none of them delivery what I consider to be the "complete journey".

Here's how the series will look.

  • PHPandas (Intro to the PHP language.)
  • TBA (Understanding PHP for the web.)
  • Code Smart (The Laravel framework for PHP.)
  • PHPatterns. (Best practice and patterns for the PHP Language.)

And possibly more!

It's an end-to-end series, supporting readers in their first steps of programming, to delivering an artisan project. I'll be there to hold your hand every step of the way.

That's all I can say about this exciting new project for now, but I hope you're excited too! Let's work together to make PHP the language that people love to use.