The web conference at the University of Illinois was an excellent event! This conference was not my normal scene. Being a web conference, the sessions covered all pertinent topics from pure design and UX all the way to distributed real-time apps and TDD. Along with the heavier design focus, this conference was outside of my normal circle of friends. In fact, I didn’t know a single other speaker or attendee before the event!
This was a great growing opportunity, and I met some very engaging personalities! I highly recommend this event.
- Standing behind a podium for your entire presentation makes a short talk seem really long.
- Plan for square screen aspect ratio, so that your content doesn’t get cut-off in the projector.
A Responsive Process
Steve Fisher (@hellofisher) started the event off with a series of zombie videos to illustrate a responsive process. I had a chance to get a drink and talk with Steve after the event, and he seems to be a great guy who definitely knows his stuff!
Check out his websites for more details!
Test Driven Development: A Love Story
Nell Shamrell (@nellshamrell) walked us through her experience as a new employee maintaining a horrific legacy codebase, and how she continues to overcome it with TDD.
- Sometimes your dream job can turn into (or turn out to be) a knightmare
- TDD is the key to maintaining legacy code
- Coming to terms with legacy code can take you through the 5 stages of grief
- Testing your code is a journey
- After embracing TDD, I no longer code out of fear and pain, I code out of love.
Real-Time Web Apps at the Assembly Hall
David Iffland (G+) described a software project he worked on that used real-time communication between web browsers with ASP.NET WebAPI and SignalR.
- Real-time apps are good for things like notifications, games and collaboration
- Real-time == Real-time(ish)
- Time can always be divided into smaller increments
- Web Sockets are best method available, but not widely supported
- SignalR allows graceful fallback to forever frame, long-polling, etc.
The Honeymoon is Over
Brad Ward (BlueFuego) closed the conference by describing social media and content strategy in terms of our family and romantic relationships.