A few months ago I wrote What is The League of Extraordinary Packages?, and it was clearly written in a defensive tone. I wanted to explain a few things about the League because people were attacking it in weird ways.
We sat down as a group and discussed a plan for 2015 to solve this. A lot of cool ideas came up, the first of which was to make a Leadership Group. These people have been doing amazing things in the PHP community at large, and have been doing awesome things in the League too.
This is an introduction to them, and a thank you for everything they do.
Alex has been a friend of mine for a long time. We've freelanced together on multiple projects, found each other jobs, met a few of each others partners, stayed at each others houses, and he has even helped me run a conference. Alex was the one up on stage introducing the next guest while I'm hiding in the bathroom having a panic attack about the fucking sandwiches.
A huge amount of the early League code came from Alex. His work at the University of Lincoln back in the UK had him doing a lot of work with OAuth, and his OAuth 2 Server is one of our most popular libraries at 128k downloads. He also took over the OAuth 2 Client for a while, which was based on some old CodeIgniter spark I smashed together back in the day. He turned my untested CodeIgniter crap into an amazing package, which has seen 62k downloads.
This chap knows what he is doing when it comes to OAuth, and you should read his stuff. His book OAuthello is going to be a cracker.
I've met this chap only a handful of times because he lives too damn far away, and on the rare occasions he does end up in New York, only once have I been not deported for the occasion. When we do get to hang out it is always a hilarious mixture of deep level coding discussions and way too much talking about bikes. Get me away from a conference and I don't shut the fuck up about bikes either, so it's good to meet another enthusiast.
Ben was responsible for building the brilliant Sentry package for Cartalyst. While I have said several times to the owner of Cartalyst that I have disagreements with the idea of charging for Composer components, it is a source of top quality stuff, and Ben built a lot of it.
Ben was always a perfect person for the League for the same reason he did so well at Cartalyst; He shares my passion for framework agnostic code. His talk at Laracon EU 2013 called Bridging the Gap covers exactly this, and Sentry is often used as an example of an amazing framework agnostic package which still achieves framework integration.
We've been talking on-line for ages, and she's been a guest on PHP Town Hall in the past, but I never had the chance to meet Kayla in person until SunshinePHP '15.
Kayla has taken over a massive project: Omnipay. This was an existing package before her involvement, and before it came to the League, but it had a huge user-base and taking it over was no small task. She jumped at this opportunity and has been nailing it ever since.
At first I was keeping an eye on the packages, to see how she was handling the pull requests and interactions from the community. Then I realized that was some bullshit white-knighting, and Kayla didn't need to be looked after. She's taken apart a few people who have crossed her, and I got to see an in-person take-down at Sunshine.
We had a vote amongst the group, and Kayla is now the FIG representative for the League - assuming we get in. Last time they might have rudely assumed she was my puppet vote, but this time there seem to be no objections from the group and she will get to do her thing over there on our behalf.
Frank De Jonge
Frank is a great guy. He's been to a CodeIgniter conference or two, we've been using each others code forever, and we are both alumni of the FuelPHP core team.
Frank also has easily the most popular package on the League: Flysystem. Flysystem is the first League package to be included in the core of a framework, and not just any framework, but the most downloaded one: Laravel 5.
/me grabs popcorn and watches #flysystem download numbers on @packagist reach for the sky. #laravel5 #php— Frank de Jonge (@frankdejonge) February 4, 2015
Over the last year Flysystem got up to about 250k installs, but in the last 30 days alone it got 88k and yesterday it got 6k. These numbers are insane.
Frank is not just one of those basement coders that writes good code and keeps quiet about it. He's been taking Flysystem on a tour, and spoken at PHP Benelux and SymfonyCon Madrid.
I have no idea where this guy came from, but Jonathan has been amazing. He designed the website for absolute free, designed the sub-sites that we use for documentation of the packages, implemented it all in Sculpin and then reimplemented it all in Jekyll at a later date.
Outside of the League Jonathan has been helping the PHP-FIG redesign their fugly website. It's not live yet, but it's gonna look amazing when it is implemented.
Jonathan brought over Plates at a very early stage, which is a mind-boggling simple but very powerful syntax-less templating system. It's a little light on adoption as people get things like Blade already in their framework, but I see a good future for it.
He's also recently released Glide, which I like because it has kayaks on the homepage.
Follow @reinink to watch a new contributor to the community work his way up from nervous-to-meet-me to speaker and member of @thephpleague— Chris Hartjes (@grmpyprogrammer) February 6, 2015
It's not just me noticing Jonathan and his efforts in the community recently.
The League is incredibly lucky to have these people helping shape its future and contribute their code. They are however not the only people working hard on the League projects, all of the project leads are, as are all of the contributors to those packages.
For a full list of project leads you should see the League's website.