PHP has come along way in the last few years. Gone are the days when it was all about spaghetti code and sloppy amateurs. It's developing into a highly featured and thoroughly modern language. With the release of PHP 5.3 & 5.4 many new features have been added, such as name spacing and type hinting, and many more are planned. Add to this the emergence of fantastic new frameworks such as Laravel and Yii, and there has never been a better time to be a PHP developer.

Of course, all this improvement can be hard to stay on top of - you need to know about these features and how to use them in order to get any benefit. To help with that, here's a list of some of my favourite PHP resources, some are just about PHP generally, some more focused on the Laravel framework - all have been very useful to me.

Laracasts (Jeffrey Way)

Laracasts is great. It’s basically a collection of video tutorials about a whole bunch of different topics related to Laravel and object-oriented PHP more generally. Jeffrey Way is a great teacher and communicator so he presents the information in a pretty easy to digest way. I think it costs $9 a month, but it’s worth it if you are just learning the framework.

Code Bright (Dayle Rees)

Probably the best book available on Laravel 4. It’s written in a really engaging way by Dayle, which makes it much easier to take in the huge amounts of informtation. This is basically a must-read book for anyone wanting to learn Laravel 4.

Tuts+ Premium

Tuts+ has an enormous amount of info on a wide range of topics, covering design, music production software devlopment and more. It also has alot of great object-0riented PHP courses as well as Laravel specific courses and book. If you’re a premium member you get access to a pretty large library of ebooks for free.

Laravel: From Apprentice to Artisan (Taylor Otwell)

This book was written by the guy who created the Laravel framework. It covers some of the more complex issues related to the framework, like architecture and design patterns. I’m still reading it at the moment, but I’ve learnt alot so far.

PHP Advanced and Object-Oriented Programming 3rd Edition (Larry Ullman)

This is one of the top two books I’ve read on advanced PHP. It’s full of great stuff, written in a really easy to read and engaging way. Absolutely recommend it to anyone wanting to dig in to more advanced PHP concepts.

PHP Objects, Patterns and Practice 4th Edition (Matt Zandstra)

Another really great object-oriented PHP book. This book has some of the same content as PHP Advanced, but it extends more into the design patterns area, which is great. Really useful for understanding PHP, OOP and Laravel better.

Questions and comments...

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