The keynote speaker on Day One was Remy Sharp who discussed the challenges he has faced with JSBin, something he created as a side project. To be honest, it was a somewhat depressing talk on how something you create and feel passionate about can turn against you and be an anchor around your neck. Other takeaways were that family changes a lot for engineers and it’s imperative to know your limits and where you need help and assistance. I found the talk very engaging and took a lot away from it on a personal level.
The second talk I attended was titled New Generation of Front End Architectures by Luca Mezzalira. He went through a brief history of MVC, MVP, MVVM, DCI, Flux and then touched on what he was calling MVI or multi-view intent. He indicated that the core of it was communicating sequential processes (CSP) along with transducers. Both Go and Clojure have native implementations of CSP, which have provided the reference to js-csp. Essentially, it feels like a pattern for using ES6 Generators (and in fact, js-csp requires support for Generators in some fashion to run). While it is an interesting pattern, I think it is just one tool in what might be part of a larger application pattern and needs more time in the oven to be fully baked.
The Day Two keynote was by Addy Osmani, the well known engineer from Google who works on open web tooling. Addy gave a Chrome DevTools Deep Dive. I was wholly impressed and hadn’t fully appreciated how far dev tooling has come. I learned a huge amount about how tooling can really help pinpoint the performance challenges for your applications. I think any self-respecting, front-end engineer needs to have a good grasp on performance tooling that can be had with Chrome and should watch this presentation.
I then attended Jack Franklin’s talk on writing ES6 applications today. Given where our focus is at SitePen, I didn’t learn anything new, but it did help me clarify some thoughts about an approach to educating others on the benefits and usage of ES6.
Then came the big moment and it was time to give my talk! The concept of a “caveman coder” had been bouncing around my head for a while, the mode when software engineers are the most dangerous to an organisation. I believe we can take steps as individuals and as teams to help defend us against the “bash on the code and commit” mentality we sometimes fall into. My talk was well-received so hopefully people were able to take away a few things that will benefit themselves and their team. The full video of the presentation is available: