Monday, January 20, 2014

EdgeConf 2013 Was The Best Conference I've Ever Attended

I do not say this lightly. I have a strong emotional bond with PyCon, and I’ve run my own conference. EdgeConf was easily the most rewarding conference experience I’ve ever had the pleasure to be a part of. Capturing why it was such a great time is very important to me.

EdgeConf was a combation of validation, fascination, and exploration.

I attended EdgeConf feeling a bit apprehensive. To me, it seemed like a Big Deal full of amazing people I would feel completely out of place around. I did not expect to fit in, but to just absorb from these smart people.

What I found instead were experts on panels solving the same problems I’m solving in very similar ways, making different trade-offs. I learned how Conde Nast has been loading responsive images, something I’ve implemented and maintain, and spent considerable time at dinner comparing the approaches we’ve taken. I was able to learn about Javascript-free ways to implement our loader, with browser support trade-offs using “The Clown Car” technique. And, I think, I was able to impart a bit of our own successes in moving our image sizing out of the content and into the presentation layer.

I was absolutely fascinated by the Legacy and Payment panels, the two I thought I’d be bored by. When Manu Sporny from the W3C told us to come and get involved in defining the spec, and when questions were routinely responded to with “go write a spec for it”, I felt enormously empowered as a participant in the direction of the web.
I write here about programming, how to program better, things I think are neat and are related to programming. I might write other things at my personal website.

I am happily employed by the excellent Caktus Group, located in beautiful and friendly Carrboro, NC, where I work with Python, Django, and Javascript.

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