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php|tropics wrap up

The past couple of days I've been speaking at php|tropics in Cancún, Mexico. It might not be the first place that you could think of for organizing a conference as attendees might find the pool and the free drinks more intesting than going to the conference sessions.

The flight to Cancún went fine - Continental is pretty okay and the second leg of the flight was actually rescheduled to 30 minutes earlier, which caused that I didn't have to wait at all in Newark. Getting into the US was a bit annoying as usual and I think that taking finger prints and a photo makes people feel like they're criminals. Arriving at Cancún International Airport is interesting too - after passing through immigration and customs there is a horde of people that want to arrange "transportation" for you. I respectfully declined and waited for Chris , Wez and George and shared a "taxi" with them to the Moon Palace Resort .

The conference started the next day on the 12th in the Expo Center across the road from the resort's entrance. The first talk I had to give was on "Clustering PHP and MySQL". It was the first time that I gave this talk, but it worked out fine although I should have had a tiny bit more material. After the sessions ended we went for dinner in one of the many restaurants and relaxed at the pool-side.

On the second day of the conference I had no talks to give, and together with Ilia and Andrei we booked a tour to Chikin-Ha . We had several activities on this tour, like zip-lining, snorkling in an under ground river and enjoying Maya food. Definitely a better choice than staying at the hotel doing nothing all day. Andrei has more on this trip. When we returned we headed for the hotel's pool and enjoyed the sun and water while sipping on our cocktails.

On the third day of the conference I gave two talks. One was a "Bring Your Own Laptop" session on "Practical Debugging Techniques" in which I showed how to use Xdebug and the second one was on "Encryption with PHP".

When checking in to get out of Mexico I found out that I misplaced my immigration card, so I had to get a replacement at the immigration office. When walking there I was already blaming myself for this, and worrying about how much time this was going to cost. Fortunately, the woman in the office gave me a simple form that I had to fill in, and during the 30 seconds that that took me she was hapily singing along with the radio. So as soon as that was wrapped up, I could go home through the air via Newark where it was again a chaos with endless queues for the various attractions like immigration, bagage collection, customs, bagage re-check-in and security. So much for efficiency. I did make it on time to Schiphol airport where I had a pick-up that brought me back to my parents place. Next trip is to go back home to Norway on Saturday.

The presentation slides of my three presentations on " Xdebug ", "Clustering PHP and MySQL " and "Playing Safe: PHP and Encryption" are online at the talks page .


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