Sunday, December 06, 2015

Reflection on 7 Years of JSConf has been a wonderful event with great talks for seven years. I thought I’d share some of my favorites. Other people will have other favorites and this should not be considered a best of list.

2009 - Looking back at the first JSConf one must marvel at the talks and the atmosphere. Magical describes about half of it. These are the talks that still influence me:
     Chris Anderson and Jan Lehnardt’s CouchDB to the Edge was funny and mind-blowing. I’m still a huge couchdb fan. James Duncan’s The Smart Platform. A JavaScript P.a.a.S had these great images of generators in factories and related the rise of electric power plant to the coming demise of in-house data centers. AWS must have watched this video. PhoneGap - Brian crushed this talk and continued to be a presence at JSConf every year. And calls for more bacon.
     I had a very small part at the end when I presented Chris Williams with some beers brewed in the year JavaScript was invented.

2010 - Again in DC with some of the better known JavaScript presenters like Brendan Eich, the inventor of JS, and Douglas Crockford who discovered JSON. Brendan sat at the table with me and the rest of the YayQuery group. Their influence on JSConf and JavaScript had been remarkable (see next year). Noted that everyone at the table had Macs and took a picture - which is lost. Also, this was one of the first US talks about node.js which had just introduced at Talks I remember vividly were:
     YayQuery’s Lunch Spectacular. Ryan Dahl on Less is More in Node.js. Dmitry Baranovskiy on Raphaël the Great which showed me that JS has no limits. And Steve Souders on performance.

2011 - Okay west coasters, JSConf is now closer in the beautiful city of Portland OR - and bigger and with more bacon. Then pinball. This is the year that the quality of the B Track really started to improve where the YayQuery speakers rules. Alex Sexton spoke on Uselessware. Rebecca Murphey’s Modern JavaScript was a great talk. And Paul Irish on Going Steady with the Chrome Dev Tools and he has since taken his expertise to YouTube fame. Yay!
     Mary Rose Cook’s Fakery, AI, Collision Detection, a 2D Platform Shooter in JS may not hold up with time but I thought it was a great moment. I also liked Ben Combee’s talk on Enyo, an early framework which I enjoyed.

2012 - Now in warm Arizona with a great pool so my family came along. Jake Archibald’s Application Cache is a Douchebag was a stunning title and he just kept me on the edge of my seat. And lastly, Chris Williams and Avni Khatri discussed Diversity In Computing. A topic we are still dealing with and having more successes every year.

2013 - First year in Florida for with CSSConf was the day before. Nicole Sullivan’s For The Love of Style Guides introduced me to the concept of a living style guide. Raquel Vèlez talk on AI.js showed the advantages of using JS for non-trivial robots. And Angelina Fabbro’s JavaScript Masterclass deserves to be the most popular video. And of course my talk on JavaScript Journalism that got quite a reaction from the journalists when the video was released.

2014 - Kawandeep Verde’s Open Web Art showed that JS really could be used for art. Yet another way to be creative or express oneself. Jenn Schiffer’s What the Harm In Sorting was hilarious. The talk that had the most impact on me was Patrick Hamann’s was CSS and the Critical Path given at CSSConf. He proved a concept I’ve argued for embedding CSS and JS in the HTML page for performance.

2015 - Mariko Kosaka’s Knitting for Javascripters was a completely unexpected talk and great on many levels. Also, Tracy Hinds’ Re-examing Recipe Search was a walk down a familiar path for me.

[Update expected with links to videos and later about LastCall.]