Talk: The Joy of Desktop Apps with Electron (by David Neal – @ReverentGeek)
So this was the talk I was waiting for, but I just didn’t know it yet. I knew about Electron (a cross-platform desktop application builder using web technologies) through the use of Atom, but I didn’t understand the intricacies. But as David spoke (and he was a great speaker, with hand-drawn images peppering his slides, adding charm), I found myself not listening at times, and instead wondering what I could do with Electron. To me, this is a successful talk, where it gets my brain spinning for new ideas and I want to go work with it. In December, we have a week long hackathon at work, so I’m definitely interested in doing more.
Talk: Planning Web Services for the Enterprise (by Gaines Kergosien – @gainesk)
So this talk wasn’t one of my favorites. To be honest, out of the 5 talks in this slot, none of them interested me. I went to this one because my coworker, Karl, went to it as well. I don’t have a lot to say about this one, other than I learned a bit about different web service orchestration tools.
Talk: Fun With Markov Chains (by Brad Montgomery @bkmontgomery)
I was looking forward to this one, since it has the trifecta of things I want in a conference talk:
- Something I don’t know anything about
- Something I want to know more about
- A speaker I enjoy (I enjoyed Brad’s talk the day before)
This talk didn’t disappoint. I got to learn some cool stuff dealing with Markov Chains (ways of stochastically determining sequences with some smarts built in). We went over how to build a simple Markov Generator for text parsing, and its definitely something I might look into for fun.
Talk: Microservices: Lessons from the Trenches (by Gregory Beamer)
While I don’t do microservices, the architecture has always interested me. Gregory went in depth about where microservices are good, what their benefits are, and some easy pitfalls to find yourself hitting. It was less a talk on Microservices and focused on some pretty good design principles. We talked about the importance of testing and automation, and how design is a balancing act. I liked his thoughts on how to break down abstraction, and the influence on contract first development.
Talk: Ratchet: A New View on Web Apps (by Jay Hayes – @iamvery)
So Ratchet was awesome. I went solely because I like Elixir, but this closed out a fantastic day of a conference. Jay Hayes was a really good speaker, and his slides were top-notch. Not being a Mac User, I wonder how much of the slide decks I’ve seen are part of the built in Mac program. Anyway, Ratchet ended up being, IMO, the most impressive tool I’ve seen in a while. I’ve always struggled with the idea of templating libraries for web apps and how they mix behavior into the HTML. Jay made a convincing case on why this was a bit iffy, and introduced Ratchet, a straightforward templating library in Elixir. The beauty was that the templates were pure HTML, which was awesome.
All in all, the conference was good. It wasn’t great, but it was good and I learned a lot and got to meet some new people. I wish there was some more after-conference activities so that I could meet more people, but I do have an Alexa Hackathon tomorrow. I hope DevSpace grows next year, and I’ll try to have my own talk.