Awwwards

Presenting about the P in PWA at Awwwards Berlin

Last Friday I presented about Progressive Web Apps (PWA) at the awwwards conference in Berlin.

I was pretty lucky as @DasSurma also covered the same topic later in the evening with a more WordPress focused approach.

I am sorry that I couldn’t stay for the whole event, but we got booted out by security as my partner and me had brought our dog. We had asked upfront but there was a miscommunication between the organisers and the event staff. So we had to leave early.

The talk I gave was “Minding the P in PWA” and I covered the idea that we talk too much about the nuts and bolts of PWAs instead of seeing their benefits.

The slides are available at SlideShare

I am pretty sure that awwwards will soon release the video. Until then you can also watch the longer version of this talk at Skillsmatter which I gave last month at the London PWA Meetup.

The resources I covered:

  • What the web can do – a dashboard of extended features of the web like sensor access checking if your current browser supports it or not
  • Mozilla ServiceWorker Cookbook – recipes of different ways to use ServiceWorkers.
  • Google Workbox – an abstraction library to ease the work with the moving ServiceWorker spec
  • Google Lighthouse – an audit extension to the Chrome developer tools that lints and checks the quality of a PWA opened in the browser
  • PWA Builder – an open source project by Microsoft that allows you to pre-seed a manifest from an existing URL and create a ServiceWorker for you. You enter a URL, and you get a PWA and binary fallbacks for the PWA in the end.
  • Details on the support for ServiceWorkers and WebManifest in Apple Safari/Webkit – including some interesting facts about how Safari deals with defunct and old caches
  • PWA Stats – a resource by Cloud Four showcasing PWA success stories. This is great if you need to convince business owners to go the PWA route
  • PWA on Windows 10 – an in-depth article showing what Windows 10 offers to PWAs, including Service Worker support in Edge and web indexing of PWAs and automatic ingestion into the Windows store. There’s also a great tweet by @kirupa, showing “what a PWA would look like on Windows 10:

Again sorry for having to bail early, please don’t hesitate to contact me if you have more PWA questions.

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My closing keynote at Awwwards NYC 2016: A New Hope – the web strikes back

Last week I was lucky enough to give the closing keynote at the Awwwards Conference in New York.

serviceworker beats appcache

Following my current fascination, I wanted to cover the topic of Progressive Web Apps for an audience that is not too technical, and also very focused on delivering high-fidelity, exciting and bleeding edge experiences on the web.

Getting slightly too excited about my Star Wars based title, I got a bit overboard with bastardising Star Wars quotes in the slides, but I managed to cover a lot of the why of progressive web apps and how it is a great opportunity right now.

I covered:

  • The web as an idea and its inception: independent, distributed and based on open protocols
  • The power of links
  • The horrible environment that was the first browser wars
  • The rise of standards as a means to build predictable, future-proof products
  • How we became too dogmatic about standards
  • How this lead to rebelling developer using JavaScript to build everything
  • Why this is a brittle environment and a massive bet on things working flawlessly on our users’ computers
  • How we never experience this as our environments are high-end and we’re well connected
  • How we defined best practices for JavaScript, like Unobtrusive JavaScript and defensive coding
  • How libraries and frameworks promise to fix all our issues and we’ve become dependent on them
  • How a whole new generation of developers learned development by copying and pasting library-dependent code on Stackoverflow
  • How this, among other factors, lead to a terribly bloated web full of multi-megabyte web sites littered with third party JavaScript and library code
  • How to rise of mobile and its limitations is very much a terrible environment for those to run in
  • How native apps were heralded as the solution to that
  • How we retaliated by constantly repeating that the web will win out in the end
  • How we failed to retaliate by building web-standard based apps that played by the rules of native – an environment where the deck was stacked against browsers
  • How right now our predictions partly came true – the native environments and closed marketplaces are failing to deliver right now. Users on mobile use 5 apps and download on average not a single new one per month
  • How users are sick of having to jump through hoops to try out some new app and having to lock themselves in a certain environment
  • How the current state of supporting mobile hardware access in browsers is a great opportunity to build immersive experiences with web technology
  • How ServiceWorker is a great opportunity to offer offline capable solutions and have notifications to re-engage users and allow solutions to hibernate
  • How Progressive Web Apps are a massive opportunity to show native how software distribution should happen in 2016

Yes, I got all that in. See for yourself :).

The slides are available on SlideShare

You can watch the screencast of the video on YouTube.

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All the small things at Awwwards Amsterdam

Last week, I cut my holiday in the Bahamas short to go to the Awwwards conference in Amsterdam and deliver yet another fire and brimstone talk about performance and considering people outside of our sphere of influence.

me at awwwardsPhoto by Trine Falbe

The slides are on SlideShare:

The screencast of the talk is on YouTube:

I want to thank the organisers for allowing me to vent a bit and I was surprised to get a lot of good feedback from the audience. Whilst the conference, understandably, is very focused on design and being on the bleeding edge, some of the points I made hit home with a lot of people.

Especially the mention of Project Oxford and its possible implementations in CMS got a lot of interest, and I’m planning to write a larger article for Smashing Magazine on this soon.

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