3 days in the world of JavaScript – Node+JS Interactive 2018

Hundreds of developers gathered at Linux Foundation 2018's three-day event to scoop up the latest updates straight from the Node.js core team, collaborate face-to-face, network, learn how to better their skills in IoT, backend, and frontend while also discussing the hot trends in the Javascript world with top tech reps from Google, Microsoft, IBM, Samsung and more.  

node+js conference

Taking place in Vancouver, British Columbia, Node+JS Interactive could not have chosen a better place with the ultimate panoramic view of the mountains and the harbor.

Presentations, panels, and talks were all focused on trends in JavaScript architectures including accessibility, app development, and APIs, AI and machine learning, community and developers, server-less, internationalization, IoT, progressive web apps, and security.

Ivan, our backend dev here at STRV shares his take of 3 days in the world of JavaScript at Node+JS Interactive.

Some of the keynote highlights:

One of the first keynote speakers was April Wensel (founder of Compassionate Coding), who talked about the prevailing stereotype of developers being sedentary, sleep-deprived, and antisocial. She explained how the culture has developed around this harmful stereotype which leads to unbalanced and ineffective teams, destructive behavior in our communities, and the high incidence of burnout among developers. In her talk, she invited us to care more about the people in our lives and to become more compassionate with our behaviour.

“Software may be built on machines, but it’s built by and for human beings. If we want to create more useful software and enjoy more sustainable and fulfilling careers, we must make time to care about the wellbeing of our collaborators, our users, and ourselves.” – April Wensel

Then we heard from Sarah Novotny (from Google cloud platforms) who shared how Google contributes to Open Source by supporting foundations, contributing to open source code, defining standards and a lot more. Google supports Open Source to build a stronger ecosystem together and it requires a community.

Next up was Chris Bailey (from IBM) who showed us how IBM has been committed to making Node.js enterprise ready through key contributions to the community and introduced us to Loopback, a Node.js framework for building large-scale APIs.

And of course we can't forget about Rob Tiffany (from EnterpriseIoT) who familiarized us with basic concepts and components of IoT and how they work. He also highlighted the problems that we’re currently having with IoT (complexity, lack of skill-set, integration, poor data quality, etc.) and how to simplify things by using things that work well and what we already know.

After Rob’s presentation, we had to make hard decisions – which presentations to attend next? Several were running simultaneously, so we ended up learning about the backend and frontend best practices, IoT, DevOps, Frameworks, Node.js project, Open Source, Scaling, Machine Learning, Agile processes, etc.

You can take a look at the full schedule here including the presentations.

two guys at a conference

On the last day:

This is when the workshops and Node.js collaborators summit took place. At a workshop (Code & Learn), we were able to contribute to Node.js's codebase with the help from members of the Node.js core team. We had a room filled with about 300 people working on Node.js improvements. It was a pretty fun experience for me to work in such an environment and to collaborate with the team while adding my first contribution to Node.js' project that later became part of the v11.0.0 release.

The takeaway:

After attending the presentations, I was surprised by how many companies acquiring JavaScript also coupled with Node.js for their internal processes and products. It’s amazing to see how JS applied beyond the web in IoT, building native apps, WebAssembly, even doing Machine Learning stuff inside a browser. We even got to learn directly from the dev team about loaders and why they decided to use the “mjs” extension for ES modules for Node. A guy also showed us a presentation about him writing an app in JavaScript to control his Tesla 3.

I learned some new things for myself like Machine Powered Refactoring and Web Assembly, etc. And on a nontechnical note, I discovered more about Effective Agile Processes and it’s all about people and how vital it is to make your workflow a tool that would serve your team; and if it doesn’t work, then change the process, not the people.

node and js conference

Overall, it was a great experience for me as a developer. I can’t wait to try a few things myself. The tech world is constantly evolving, coming up with new things and technologies, it’s important to be on top of it all.

Edited by Alysa Yamada.

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Ivan Lukasevych

Ivan Lukasevych

Backend developer at STRV

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