“A good knowledge of servers and how they work is vital to most web applications. Generally for PHP development a database is required, as well as proper server configuration to work in tandem with your web application. I have a solid working knowledge of server configuration and can debug most server issues.”
The Open Web Application Security Project (OWASP) lists a set of standards that applications should adhere to so they can protect themselves against malicious attacks and security vulnerabilities from poor coding practices. I have worked on large scale applications for huge corporate clients which requires solid security to pass rigorous PEN testing.
To me server optimisation isn't just about speed, its also about security. You have to protect what you have built.
While many frameworks and systems employ their own .htaccess with predefines rules, there are specific speed and security rules that should be added to every website that may not be present. I have developed a highly optimised and secure set of .htaccess rules that I add to all the web application I build that ensure a solid and secure experience.
Database Optimisation & Administration
Optimising database queries and relations is a core part of interacting with a database especially when working with large data sets. Increased database performance leads to increased application performance. Being able to work within a database is also another core skill and I have experience with many database administration software in including phpMyAdmin and Sequel Pro.