Taylor Otwell: "PHP (and a cheap laptop) changed my life"
How Taylor earns a living from a free, open-source PHP framework called Laravel
Jon is away so Justin called up Taylor Otwell, the creator of Laravel. In this episode we covered:
- How Laravel become the most popular backend framework on GitHub.
- Surprise! Taylor wasn't really into computers before he created Laravel.
- What was Taylor's motivation? Why did he create this, even though there were other alternatives?
- What's Laravel's secret? Why did it succeed?
- How is Laravel a business? How does it earn revenue?
"Before Laravel, there were a lot of programmers that were burnt out on PHP. These folks hated their job. But after Laravel, they enjoyed their job more. It helped them in a personal way."
Here's the timeline we discussed:
- 2010: Taylor starts working on Laravel.
- 2011: Taylor launched version 1.0 of Laravel.
- 2013: Taylor launches an ebook
- 2013: Start working on Forge
- 2013: First Laracon conference (90 people)
- 2014: Launches Forge at Laracon (240 people)
- 2014: after a month he had 1000 customers, $90k / ARR almost right from launch. (He thought it would maybe make $2-$3k / month). Plans started at $10 / month.
- End of 2014: decided to go full-time on Laravel.
- 2015: Full-time on Laravel, developed a competitive nature, really driven to see Laravel
- 2015: Launched Envoyer.io
- 2016: Launched Spark, as a “SaaS starter kit.”
- 2016: First full-time employee, Mohamed Said.
- 2017: Launched Laravel Echo, Passport, Notifications.
- 2017: Second hire,
- 2018: Laravel Nova.
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- Taylor Otwell on Twitter
- Taylor Otwell's podcast
- Laracon - the Laravel conference
- Justin's article: Why many products struggle, and only a few succeed
- Jeffrey Way and Laracasts
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