JSConf EU 2017

Last week I attended JSConf EU 2017. It was the first conference I have attended and was so fantastic I wanted to write a bit about my experience.

The Venue

Arriving at the venue (Arena Berlin) it looked like a fairly unassuming warehouse but when the doors were opened on the first day I could see the effort that went into transforming the building into the perfect conference space.

There was a large area for the talks, a separate smaller room for a secondary track, a whole setup for eating freshly cooked meals, a cloakroom, sponsor booths etc. There was even a mini beach and a frozen yoghurt mini van! The food was plentiful and of fantastic quality. The meals were well thought out and suitable for all.

Between talks the stage area came alive with lighting and music performed live by LiveJS - simply phenomenal!

Opening

The conference opened with a great perfomance by nested_loops which set the tone for the rest of the conference. There was a real buzz in the air and everybody was having fun.

Talks

Talks were split into two tracks; the main track was ‘back track’ and the secondary track, ‘side track’. For the whole conference I stayed in back track. There was a large number of speakers on a wide range of topics (performance, ethics, accessibility, offline first, community, browser engines, web assembly etc.). In addition to speakers I knew of like Addy Osmani, Anjana Vakil and Mariko Kosaka there were many speakers I hadn’t known whose talks were all fantastic.

Here are my favourite talks from the conference:

Addy Osmani: The Browser Hackers Guide to Instantly Loading Everything

Addy Osmani kicked off the conference with a stellar talk on loading-related performance.

Franziska Hinkelmann: JavaScript Engines - how do they even?

Franziska Hinkelmann gave a very insigtful talk about Google’s V8 JavaScript engine which she works on in Berlin. The talk looked at V8’s optimisation pipeline and included tips to ensure apps adhere to the constraints required for good optimisation.

Emily Gorcenski: The Ethics of the Internet of Things

I think Emily Gorcenski’s talk was the most powerful and thought-provoking of the entire event. I don’t think I’d look at IoT the same way again without thinking of the major ethical issues that Emily raised.

Mariko Kosaka & Suz Hinton: Can You Read Me? Creative JavaScript to Make Computer Science Fun

It was in the title really, I thought this was the most fun talk of the conference as Mariko and Suz guided us through their message machines they built and reminded us to always remember the fun of computer science and not be too serious!

Conclusion

I thoroughly enjoyed JSConf EU 2017 and it was a fantastic introduction to conferences. I went home inspired, motivated and ready to dive into some JavaScript! I definitely hope to attend more conferences in the future. If you are interested in seeing some of the talks from the event, check out the JSConf Youtube channel.

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