Jan JedlickaSebastian SieczkowskiBeata Plevkova5 min

JSNation Conference Rundown

EngineeringAug 29, 2022



Aug 29, 2022


3 authors

5 min read

Jan JedlickaBackend Engineer
Sebastian SieczkowskiBackend Engineer
Beata PlevkovaBackend Engineer

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After attending the JSNation Conference, we’ve put together a wrap-up of the most interesting talks — including why they’re worth watching in full, what they taught us and how you can apply the knowledge going forward.

Now that videos of all talks are online and you can easily watch them if our summaries pique your interest, it’s finally time to publish the official STRV JSNation rundown.

We’re throwing in a bit of everything: talks best suited for beginners, unique topics and insightful information that includes practical tips for daily use.

You can find all the JSNation talks (and full workshop recordings) here.

Beginner-oriented Talks

Content Modeling 101 (by Contentful)

Watch the video.

An okay talk acting as an advertisement for Contentful. Definitely interesting for those not yet familiar with content modeling (it includes a few solid modeling tips, like referencing other entities), as it’s a good introduction to all of the possibilities.

If the talk interests you, you may want to check out our article on content modeling: Building a Contentful-driven Audio Streaming App.

Webpack in 5 Years?

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Most of us know Webpack’s shortcomings: it’s notorious for being difficult to set up and there are better tools out there. The dilemma addressed in this talk by Webpack creator Tobias Koppers: Why is Webpack unlikely to be changed and still be used in five years?

The answer is that Webpack is a part of the legacy code of countless companies, which is a double-edged sword. On the one hand, it means that Webpack still has a place in the industry. On the other hand, making changes (a.k.a. improvements) to it would cause issues.

Full Stack Documentation (by SvelteKit)

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Another advertisement masking as a talk. Nonetheless, it’s an entertaining watch and the overarching advice is good to keep in mind: Even better than having things explained is actually trying them out.

The SvelteKit tutorial was built with this in mind, arguably creating one of the best learning playgrounds yet, allowing you to play around in a safe environment. You can try it out immediately with its structured lessons and engaging documentation. Plus, it can basically run Node.js code in your browser.

Confessions from an Imposter

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Imposter syndrome is a very relevant topic. The good part about this talk is that it serves as a reminder that it’s normal to feel like an imposter, even several times a day. Feeling a sense of accomplishment doesn’t mean you’ll never feel like an imposter — and that’s okay.

Unfortunately, the talk doesn’t offer practical advice about overcoming imposter syndrome. If that’s what you’re looking for, we recommend Impact: Growing as an Engineer by Iris Schaffer.

How I've Been Using JavaScript to Automate My House House Automation With Espruino IoT

Watch the video.

House automation with Espruino IoT is another great talk for beginners who will still be blown away by the ways you can automate your house (there are many!). It’s especially helpful as a bridge for JavaScript engineers into the microcontroller world, since you don’t have to use C++.

If you’ve played around with automation before, you won’t learn too many new things. Instead, you’ll watch someone being very excited about the options — which actually might be a good way to reinvigorate your enthusiasm!

Cool Insight + Practical Tips

Security Controls in the JavaScript Supply Chain

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Hands down one of our favorite talks. It provides helpful information for everyday use by exploring the numerous things you should protect yourself against — by showing you all the ways things can be broken, then sharing tools and tips that help you stay safe.

At STRV, we utilize many third-party packages so it’s important that we’re extra cautious. This talk talks about everything that can go wrong: people going rogue, sources being compromised, poisoned lock files… your entire infrastructure is at risk if you’re not careful. All Node.js engineers should give this one a watch.

How JS Modules Work: a Browser Perspective

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A talk by an engineer from the Mozilla foundation, this one dives into module lazy loading — issues with loading modules in JavaScript. It not only describes the problem but also includes a possible solution that’s currently in the proposal stage and being reviewed.

Overall, it’s basically a tech demo about speeding up modules without locking the execution for a long time. An interesting possibility for anyone interested in the topic.

Coolest Topics

Record & Tuple: Immutable Data Structures in JS

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Another one of our favorites, this talk covers a proposed feature for JavaScript that aims to introduce new immutable value types. Immutable data structures are something that JavaScript doesn’t really have out of the box; this feature would change that.

The feature is very straightforward: simply adding the hash sign before an array or object. Whether or not it goes through is yet to be determined, but wouldn’t it be great for JavaScript to have something it definitely should have had a long time ago?

Impact: Growing as an Engineer

Watch the video.

Another highlight, this talk was full of practical examples about how to create impact and grow as an engineer day to day. Scheduling meetings properly, making decisions, communicating well, holding yourself accountable, mentoring people and how that’s different from sponsoring them… there’s so much advice to choose from. Highly recommended!

Apart from all of the above and discussing the difference between a good vs. a great engineer, the talk also questioned certain aspects of our “norm.” Should soft skills be renamed to core skills due to the connotations?

And to share our favorite piece of advice: “Marry your goal with the unmet need of the company.”

Build a 3D Solar System With Hand Recognition and Three.js

Watch the video.

If you want to watch someone build a 3D solar system with hand recognition in half an hour, this talk is right up your alley. It starts with a canvas and then, with a few finger snaps, there’s an entire universe. Very cool to witness.

Granted, this talk won’t leave you with anything you can use at your job every day. But sometimes it’s enough to sit back and be amazed by how far we’ve come.

WebBluetooth - the Missing Link

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All about the WebBluetooth API closing the gap between the browser and devices. It allows you to communicate with numerous Bluetooth devices at once, and this talk goes over the possibilities as well as the hurdles you may come across — tech demo included.

We’ve found this very useful at STRV and are already looking to implement it on one of our client projects. Definitely something we recommend you take a look at.

MIDI in the Browser… Let’s Rock the Web!

Watch the video.

MIDI has been around for a while and now it’s possible to interact with your favorite musical instrument from the browser as well. Not only does the talk cover the built-in support in Chrome, Firefox and Opera, but it also introduces the WEBMIDI.js library — which makes all the interactions with the MIDI API easier.

Another great demo that stands out from the crowd. As the talk claims: Web devs, man your synths! If you’re musically inclined in any way, you’ll really enjoy this one.

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