In this blog post I want to share my impressions and takeaways of this year’s edition of the annual Frontend Conference in Zurich. The atmosphere during the two days was inspiring, chilled and relaxed.
So first of all let me thank all the speakers and the organisers of the Frontend Conference Zurich for this great event.
Learning from the past for building a better present
The conference’s new location, an old paper factory, was great. I liked it as the web can be seen as an evolution from print based information to what it is today. This was also referenced in the opening keynote “The Fine Art of Web Design“ by Andy Clarke. However, he highlighted how the typography and design from books and comics can still be relevant to our websites and how Frontend Developers should care about spreading content and information to users in the best and nicest way possible.
Accessibility is not a feature but a mindset
The importance of accessibility was reinforced in Estelle Weyl’s talk “Fast. Simple. Accessible”. It reminded me to make my work as accessible as possible in order to make screen reading programs and other tools able to read the website. Accessibility is not just investing time and money to a relatively small target of users. Accessibility is ensuring that the Web is there for everyone.
When the HTML code is semantically correct, then you have covered accessibility and SEO at the same time. Every developer should implement accessibility into their work, even if the customer has not asked directly to do it. Providing accessibility to the masses means that there is transparency on the Web. It means that there are no walls or barriers on the Web and that everybody has access to the same information. There should never come a time again where people are separated by walls. I have come away from the conference with this feeling. This is my new ethic goal. Thank you.
How developers can deliver faster and better
As I mentioned previously, it is every Frontend Developers’ responsibility to deliver content to the end user in the best way possible. To achieve this goal, we need to have some approaches that help us saving time and money. A big help are methodologies that help keeping the code maintainable. Harry Roberts reminded us that choosing the easy way without refactoring gives you a result in quick time but with a technical debt. Componentize everything to be faster in producing better systems. Finally test your HTML.
I think this way can really help reducing the technical depth and create better work.
It is difficult to summarize all talks in a blog post. I just wanted to share the main thoughts I came home with.
We use the web today as our main learning source and have to make sure that the future is great, by delivering information in the most accessible way possible. We have a great responsibility to the users. If we fail to enhance user experience, we fail in delivering the content, which is a block to the learning process.
To mitigate this, every developer should ensure the quality of their code, which has to be accessible for the whole world, performant, maintainable and easily understandable.
I came away from the conference with a feeling of new found responsibility. I want to maintain and improve my work ethic, in order to enhance content flow from a source to its end. Information has to be available everywhere, in every country and, most importantly, for everyone.
We can change the world; we are providing information to the world! It’s our mission to make it great!
If you missed the Frontend Conference 2016 or a specific session, you can watch all talks here.
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