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Issue 39

SMARTWEB CONFERENCE 2015

Alexandru Botez
Web Developer @ Gemini Solutions
OTHERS

The third edition of SmartWeb Conference took place on September 21st and 22nd at JW Marriot Bucharest Grand Hotel. It is the most important East-European event dedicated to web developers and designers.

After the success of the first two editions, Evensys had proposed organizing this year eight international level conferences, for the participants to discover the latest tendencies in web and mobile development and meet colleagues and great people from the web industry.

Among the great names the participants had the opportunity to listen to and meet, we can mention: Bruce Lawson (Opera), Petro Salema (Gentics), Roy Tomeij (Advanced SASS), Stephen Hay (Zero Interface), Tobias Ahlin (Lookback, in the past Github and Spotify), Soldedad Penades (Mozilla), Heydon Pickering (Neontribe), Andy Hume (Twitter) and Christian Heilmann (Microsoft).

During the first day, the participants were able to take part in an advanced workshop on Sass CSS, together with Roy Tomeij, and the second day was dedicated to the eight conferences. CSS, Responsive Web Design, HTML5 & CSS3 and Java represented the main domains tackled in the conferences.

The second day was started by Petro Salema, who raised some questions regarding the amount of information we offer to the web and the way in which this information is analyzed and used. Other subjects he tackled were UX design and the how the web applications development has progressed from desktop first to mobile first, to predicative backend first at the present moment.

He was followed by Roy Tomeij, who proved live how simple it is to achieve advanced things by using Sass CSS.

The idea of simplicity was carried on also in the following conference, that of Stephen Hay, who believes that we often spoil things in the development stage due to unnecessary complexity and he presented the main reasons why and how we complicate them.

Tobias Ahlin contributed by a presentation on the CSS animations, where he gave us some pieces of advice and ideas on their usage and performance.

The second part of the day was started by Soledad Penades, with a presentation on Web Audio API, focused on the way it can significantly increase the performance of the application and how it gives us the possibility to build sophisticated and efficient tools with little effort.

Heydon Pickering also exposed some interesting ideas in his conference on prototyping the design on paper. He thinks it is essential for web design to start on paper, offering thus the entire team (whether designer or developer) the opportunity to express their opinion.

Right before the last conference of the day, Andy Hume spoke about the importance of the loading speed of a website and how much it affects the user experience. Andy also presented the main causes for this problem, as well as manners in which they can be avoided.

The day was ended by Christian Heilmann, who had probably the most captivating presentation of the day. He talked about how we make our lives more difficult by asking for new things instead of using what already exists, or by writing awful code and blaming other people or the environment for it.

All in all, it was a very successful event, with exceptional and funny speakers. I recommend to everyone who did not take part in it to have a look at least at Christian Heilmann's conference - "The wheel is spinning, but the hamster is dead", which can be found online. "People should have an awful experience on the awful browsers, as this way they have the chance to move on to a better browser", is but one of the funny quotes from this conference, which I will never forget.

I shall definitely not miss next edition !

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