With great power comes great responsibility – Uncle Ben aka
Taylor Otwell 😉
– Laravel, comparison to CakePHP, and ownership model
– The realization (of difference in ownership)
– Impact, blockers and opportunities for me
Laravel, comparison to CakePHP, and ownership model
Taylor Otwell, the creator of Laravel, was perceived by me as an arrogant individual when I first starting to learn what Laravel is and who Taylor is.
I have been brought up during the era of CakePHP, WordPress, Magento, CI, Yii, Zend (and some other frameworks) and these frameworks are great frameworks.
They get shit done, and wow, in such awesome ways possible (genuine awesomeness and with a pinch of sarcasm as well).
None of these frameworks is owned by an individual (unless I am really ignorant about this fact), and when I go see Laravel’s homepage it says “Trademark of Taylor Otwell” and I am like “whoa… that’s arrogance”.
He is not the only one who has contributed to the development and success of Laravel, there are numerous other people (working directly on the framework, creating libraries, conducting training, sessions, conferences etc) and yet Laravel is “owned” by Taylor Otwell.
I had this discussion with quite a few people, specifically with @svikramjeet about possible reasons for this “attitude”. I was convinced that Laravel should be a an organization, under which Taylor work and operates, and yet there was no lack of people moving to Laravel (a very young framework) leaving all other mature frameworks with their well-known features and a lot of blogs and articles and training materials floating around the web.
Not until recently, a few months back, when it has been over a year since this thing have been bugging me, that I had a realization that made me change me thought process.
The realization (of difference in ownership)
Something went wrong in a version of Laravel 5.8.4 and some of the dependencies were behaving abruptly (due to removal of PutEnvAdapter).
Following links contain more info:
Taylor was on vacation, and he mentioned this in one of the thread linked above, and he promptly got the issue fixed and released the next version the next day.
This is a clear example of
move fast, break things and till that day I was not able to realize this phrase. I understood, but now I realized what it meant – the worry of things going wrong should not stop you from experimentation, be courageous enough to own the process and confident enough to get things back on track if something goes south.
If this was CakePHP, then such an issue would not have happened in the first place.
And the fix might not have been so quick either.
There are very good processes in place that would prevent preventable issues to crop up, and that means there would be a lot more checks/considerations when talking about a release, which means a slower delivery schedule, a more
controlled release process, which eventually means fewer contributions by newer generation of developers – these young folks are smart(er), work fast(er), expect feedback fast(er) because they are impatient, owing to the technical environment these young minds have been exposed to.
While the instant gratification process is definitely wrong, but since it is out there (yet) and there are developers who are suffering from this issue, and are good/awesome developers, they agree and align more with
individuals rather than
processes. They are OK with broken things (the Zuckerberg-inspired people) as long as those are fixed soon as well.
The “So what?” attitude really helps here – yes, some code was wrong, it was fixed in less than a day, “So what?”.
Additionally, people want someone to look up to – I, for one, cannot look up to “CakePHP” as a framework or as an organization, rather I would look up to “Mark Story” or “Taylor Otwell” – the people who get things done, who inspire, instil a notion of “get-shit-done”, and are there to answer us when we reach out to them on Twitter.
Even if CakePHP Twitter handle responds, it is not guaranteed to respond every time, but when Taylor or Mark will reply, then a whole lot of “looking-up-to-them” people will reply.
I don’t know if I am rightly addressing the cause (or even if it is a right cause), and I haven’t proof-read the above content.
I am writing, and once I am done, I will hit “Publish”, I am impatient, I don’t care if some typo or a incorrect sentiment goes out, I will reply in the comments if someone asks me something, and I will acknowledge and own if something is wrong. I had no intention to hurt any individual or organization, so I know (and I am confident) that my words would not come out as hurting, but if someone would be looking for “getting hurt”, the person will find something that fits the “use case” – and yes, I won’t care.
I used to think that I belong to an older generation, but I think there are some traits that I am following.
So what’s next?
I am going to set some things right in the world of CakePHP, not necessarily because things are going wrong, but because I believe I would want to see someone respond when I there is a need to respond, someone who can understand the context, be ready rewrite everything that is out there because someone might really be talking about something small that requires an overhaul of the things.
In last few months I have felt the need for someone to act like CakePHP’s T. Otwell, M. Said, J. way, and although I found people who were close, I wanted more, and unless I find someone else, I am going to own this – this is a strong sentiment and it took me 20 minutes to write this single line because of the responsibility and ownership this needs (and I will grow where I lack).
Good luck, and god speed…