Thursday, October 21, 2010

Front Trends 2010 in a few words

First day of Front Trends conference is behind us now. First time ever so many JavaSript 'gurus' met in Poland. As the participant of this event I would like to write a few words about it.

Conference was opened by the organizers - Damian Wielgosik & Pawel Czerski. They said few words about the dreams, writing anonymous emails to famous people, and organizing conference from scratch. I respect Damian for everything he is making for Javascript community, but that part looks really bad. It was delayed, unprepared, and above all just uninteresting for the developers. Searching for #ft2010 on twitter just after it starts I could read a lot of comment like that.
But the worst part of the opening was short speech made by ZlapTaxi guy, who said at the beggining that if you want to make cross-mobile application you have to build huge team of Java, Objective-C, Symbian C, Cpp and God only knows what other developers (have you ever heard of PhoneGap? Oh, sorry, it was next presentation and it is so hard to read all that up to date stuff in the Internet). After explaining how to use his catch-a-taxi app and announcing a contest, he state that if you will find girl in Front Trends tshirt somewhere there, she could helps you order a taxi. So why he build that app for if there are girls to do this? Never mind.

First speech I was attending in was "You know webOS" by Markus Leutwyler. Markus presented webOs history, main tasks, and devices that webOS is running on (even kind of printer with that Os - sick!). After that he discussed basics of webOs development - Mojo framework, building and connecting Scenes & Controllers. He finished with few words about jailbreaking and rooting Palm devices, testing & packaging created apps. Everything was clear and nice (especially I like his pronunciation of the name "webOS", maybe it is Swiss accent or something, I'm not sure:) ), but if you ever create even one simple webOs application - you already know everything Markus was talking about. For sure - if I hadn't written anything on webOS before,I would start after this lecture!

In the second talk Robert Nyman showed us main features of HTML5. He said a little about history of language, coercion, falsy values, video and audio elements and it's hacks, few words about webstorage and cookies and gives us nice example of FileAPI. Each comparison of 'old' methods and 'brand new HTML5' manner was served in funny, enjoyable way, with a lot of Forrest Gump or other pop culture references (Why Rachel from "the Friends" sitcom was sad after her boyfriend left her? Because she needs closure!)

Andrea Giammarchi a.k.a. WebReflection prepared nice speech about Javascript performance on different devices. He showed us couple of performance tests and explained each one. As the summary of the talk he state that if you want you app to run fastest as possible you have to create it for given browser and use browser-specific hacks for performance boost. Check Andrea's blog for more details.

Before the lecture of Kyle Simpson I was wondering, what is that all Javascript Middle-end stuff about. He explained everything using nice, simple slides and charts in about a half of his time. Starting from traditional MVC architecture (the "boring" one) he presents new Clients Views Controllers architecture in which all the logic made in the templates before, is now moved to the middle-end layer. In this manner of creating web applications there are no single condition or equation in the templates. Sounds great. Next he showed sources of his Shortie.me page build using his Bikechain.js - minimal server-side JavaScript wrapper environment.

Last speech for today was prepared by Douglas Crockford. I must say that I was a little bit disappointed - I've already seen this! His "Javascript server-side" lecture was modified version of his Loopage presentation from YUI Theater. Yes, I know - that is all my false - I watch every Crockford's video available on the Internet.
Undeniably - the best part of today's event was Panel Discussion with Tantek Celik, Peter-Paul Koch & Mr Crockford. It was more than one and a half hour of pure Javascript discussion, so it is impossible to quote everything. Most interested things I've learned from the panel:
- differences between API's and implementations are consequence of using technology before specification is finished,
- Flash took place in the web market because HTML was not able to make awesome things. Now it is, so we have to forget about Flash,
- web developers are the most stupid and the laziest people ever
- people are watching so much porn that they have to download JS libraries each time they visit site that is using it:)
- and if you want to be good JS developer you must use js frameworks and you couldn't use it simultaneously.

Tomorrow second day. I'm really looking forward for it!

UPDATE: read next part [here]

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