Sally’s talk reminded us about our responsibilities for what create and the experiences we craft. I’ve managed to make that sound rather dull, but her examples and ideas were far from dull - especially the way the we can keep evolving with the web and push how we make the technology the servant of great experiences.
I’ve seen Robin talk a few times now, and he never disappoints. Aside from the dextirity with which he uses technology to demonstrate technology - which is hard to do - he also gives a great insight into just how transformative technology can be.
Owen’s talk was a change of pace with an exploration of the way we write on the web with some observations about styles and their intent. I’ve done him a horrible disservice with my precis, so at least read What screens want by Frank Chimero and watch When we build by Wilson Miner.
On reflection, a theme seemed to emerge from the whole conference when watching Mr Bingo, which was that of implementing things. It’s not enough to have ideas, but you have to run with them. Mr Bingo does that in spades. Big, Sweary, Delightful spades.
The thing I enjoyed most from the Creative Mornings session from David Hieatt was the obvious enjoyment and stimulation from having ideas, often widly ambitiously, and then running with them. The emphasis on following through on ideas was great.
It was a good finish to end with hyper-optimist Brad Frost’s talk sending everyone away with Work Hard. Don’t be an asshole. Share what you have learnt.
I think Benjamin Hollway slightly scared everyone over 30 in the audience by being so precocious. He gave a good talk about younger devs and what we can do to help them along. My constructive criticism would be to talk more about himself - the story of coding from age 8 is way more extraordinary than it probably feels to him - I think lots of people would love to hear more about that specifically.
A really practical talk from Andy with plenty of stuff to go away and do (or ask someone else to do), with really good reasons why you should.
Seb Lee Delisle was a very entertaining and relaxed speaker who likes lasers. He also showcased some fantastic art experiments that were impressive on their own, but made more so by the knowledge of the technical skills and ideas that were involved in their creation.
Phil Hawksworth did a lovely job with a timely reminder of the power of the humble URL. It was good to be reminded that such a simple principle as the hyperlink has been so essential to the medium that we all rely on.
Nathan Ford did a nice job of reminding us that everything changes - which can be very stressful in an industry that depends so much on keeping up with a fast changing landscape - but also gave some pointers on how we might manage to keep on top of things.
Kier Whitaker set the context for the second half of his talk by doing a lightening quick round of up of his personal history on the web, which had more than a few members of the audience reminiscing about how far we’ve come, and maybe gone backwards in some areas.
Emma Mulqueeny was a new name to me, and one of the good things about thi event for me was hearing from new people. Hers was a talk outlining the characteristics of people born after 1997 - (the 97ers of the title) and how the things they’ve grown up with online will shape their and our futures.
Chris Murphy’s talk was a great way to start the conference, with some heartening stories of teaching the next generation. I particularly liked the reference to Industrical versus Agricultural models of education by Sir Ken Robinson, though when searching that, I also found an interesting rebuttal to some of his ideas.
I was looking forward to seeing Anna speak having enjoyed her Pocket Guide on Style guides,as well her 24ways article on Jekyll. - I wasn’t disappointed - It was an intriguing journey through the weird and wonderful world of console capabilities and controllers. I found it a good wake up call to be better informed about the ways that people consume the things that we build.
Something different for Andy Clarke’s session where he recorded an edition of his podcast Unfinished Business talking about Mental Health and Wellbeing in our industry to coincide with Geek Mental Help Week
Helia lead a good discussion on web sites and whether they are even needed.
Gareth lead a discussion that touched on hyperlocal sites and how to make information easily consumable.
Dafydd lead a cool session puzzling over whether Wales can and/or should get our own version of GDS
Bill Oates lead a discussion about public toilet provison across Wales that was surprisingly wide ranging.