Laravel has become one of the fastest growing PHP frameworks ever. With its expressive syntax and excellent documentation, it’s easy to get a fully functioning web application up-and-running in very little time. Additionally, the use of modern PHP features makes Version 4 of Laravel very easy to customize to our own needs and also makes it easy for us to create a highly complex site if need be. It’s a perfect blend of the simple and advanced.
This book covers merely a fraction of all that Laravel is capable of. Think of it more as a starting point, with code examples to get things working. Then customize them, add to them, or combine them to create your own applications. The possibilities are endless.
One of the best things about Laravel is the community. If you’re ever stuck on a problem and doing a Google search isn’t helping, there are always people willing to help out. You can find helpful community members on IRC (#laravel on Freenode) or the forums (http://forums.laravel.io) or you can contact the many Laravel users on Twitter.
What this book covers
Chapter 1, Setting Up and Installing Laravel, covers various ways to get Laravel up-and-running.
Chapter 2, Using Forms and Gathering Input, shows many ways to use forms in Laravel. It covers using Laravel’s form class as well as some basic validation.
Chapter 3, Authenticating Your Application, demonstrates how to authenticate users. We’ll see how to use OAuth, OpenId, and various social networks for authentication.
Chapter 4, Storing and Using Data, covers all things data, including how to use data sources other than a MySQL database.
Chapter 5, Using Controllers and Routes for URLs and APIs, introduces various routing methods in Laravel and how to make a basic API.
Chapter 6, Displaying Your Views, demonstrates how views work in Laravel. We’ll also incorporate the Twig templating system and Twitter Bootstrap.
Chapter 7, Creating and Using Composer Packages, explains how to use packages in our app as well as how to create our own package.
Chapter 8, Using Ajax and jQuery, provides different examples of how to use jQuery in Laravel and how to make asynchronous requests.
Chapter 9, Using Security and Sessions Effectively, covers topics about securing our application and how to use sessions and cookies.
Chapter 10, Testing and Debugging Your App, shows how to include unit testing in our app with PHP Unit and Codeception.
Chapter 11, Deploying and Integrating Third-party Services into Your Application, introduces a number of third-party services and how we can include them in our application.