Written by Matt Caprioli, Content Marketing Associate at eZ


Michał Pipa, a coder for more than half of his life and one of the founders of the PHP meetup group phpers, joined eZ Systems last November. 

He and his team are developing the backend for eZ Studio, eZ’s new content creation center, which is built on top of eZ Platform. They work from the Polish office in Katowice.


Michał explained what eZ projects he’s working on now, why he decided to be a developer, and which Polish science fiction we should add to our reading list.

What do you like about eZ?

I like that our product is open source. That’s one of the most important things for me. We share our work with the community and we can collaborate with other projects, which is a huge advantage. Many other things, but open source is up there.

What can you tell us about eZ Studio?

eZ Studio is our commercial extension to eZ Platform. Together with our Cloud Services, they form our new stack called eZ Enterprise. It’s our biggest release in over a decade, and it’s coming at the end of Q4 2015.

eZ Studio offers features like in-site editing, flexible workflows and landing page management. It is aimed at editors and marketers and allows them to easily create and manage their content.

Right now, we are working on a new user interface that's highly visual and very intuitive. Users can create content by dragging and dropping simple blocks on the page. It’s a big step forward for us as well as business users.

Did you always want to be a developer?

My father and my uncle were always interested in programming. They were doing some programming work, they’re not programmers, more like hobbyists, but they were creating some programs, and they introduced me to everything.

My first contact with computers was when I was around 10 years old. Computers weren’t an easy thing to reach because we were (laughs) a communist country. So we didn’t have easy access to stuff like computers.

I used machines like the Commodore 64.

I learned programming then, so I was doing some really simple programs in BASIC language. I learned programming seriously in primary school.

Tell us a bit about your professional background.

Let’s say that I didn’t choose web programming, it was web programming that chose me. When I started web programming, my friend was looking for someone who could help him with some projects, so I started working with PHP. I had some knowledge of PHP, but it was very basic. Then I found another job as a PHP developer. So I started working with a software house, and we were doing custom applications for customers, and I did that for about eight years. Then I moved to eZ Systems.

I was also doing PHP and Symfony trainings for other developers.. And I think I’m quite good at this -- transferring knowledge to other people.

When did you first hear of Symfony?

When I was working for a previous company. We had our own customer framework, and we were looking for another framework. We decided to use Symfony. It was the first version, Symfony 1.0. We ended up liking it a lot, so we stuck with it since the first release.

When the second version came out, it was even better.

I started to attend Symfony conferences in Europe. There are Symfony Live conferences, then there’s the international version called SymfonyCon. The first version was in Warsaw three years ago, and the last edition was in Madrid. And this year of course it will be in Paris. It’s a wonderful place to meet lots of developers.

Tell us about your favorite high school teacher. What did they tell you that you still remember?

You know, this question is tricky. I have to think about it (laughs). I think it was my Polish teacher. She introduced me to some interesting literature, like The Visit. It was something different from all the other classes. I was really into math and computer science through high school, but I think my Polish class was something that really influenced me.

As far as hobbies, when you’re not near a computer, what are you doing?

What I like most is reading books. I read quite a lot, all different things. Some technical things, of course. But I also really like non-fiction, literature, science fiction. Isaac Asimov, Terry Pratchett, and I’m not the only one. Other eZ developers also read Pratchett, so I’m not his only fanboy at eZ!

Also some Polish science fiction authors like Stanisław Lem. He’s really a genius, and I love that I can read his works in Polish.


You can read what Michał is up to on Twitter https://twitter.com/michalpipa or see one of his GitHub presentations http://michalpipa.github.io/talks/2015-05-30-whats-new-php-dcwroc/#/

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