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Coldfront Conference 2014 in Copenhagen

We were excited when we first heard of Coldfront Conference since a developer conference in Copenhagen is hard to come by these days and we have been accustomed to travel abroad to get some good inspiration.

The conference boasted 7 speakers in a tight packed one-day schedule covering everything from dynamic two-way binding frameworks like Dart and Ember to the opposite end of the spectre where Phil Hawksworth from R/GA talked about static site generation.

All seven talks from the day can be seen here: video.coldfrontconf.com

Workflow

As most developers can probably agree workflow is king. Even on your best day a shaky workflow can bring it all down. Almost every talk had a workflow angle or could be interpreted as workflow related topic – i.e. a disorganised workflow will prevent you from delivering an optimised solution to your users, make you vulnerable to change or prevent you from effectively working as a team.

A few talks had their main focus on delivering the crucial content to the user as fast as possible, and Nat Buckley even claimed that you were literally breaking the web unless you made this your prime concern. If somewhat a too bold statement, being able to react to these concerns requires a structured workflow, where modules can be optimized independently, and the entire website isn’t an intertangled web of code only decipherable to the developer (that left the company a few years ago). At Plant we have had a lot of focus lately on team based development in order to meet this and other challenges of modern web development.

Performance and perceived performance

Guillermo Rauch did a talk called “How to build the modern, optimistic and reactive user interface, we all want” and he had a lot of good pointers on how to improve the user experience by improving the perceived performance. We recommend that you have a look at the video from the conference.  A keyword to perceived performance is Feedback: if something is taking a while, give the user an indication of progress instead of letting them hang in oblivion.

All talks summed up as sketches by Elisabeth Irgens

Twitter: elisabethirg