Thoughts from Generate Conference

Published: Oct 7, 2014 by C.S. Rhymes

The other week I was lucky enough to get a ticket to Generate Conference by .net Magazine. There were some really interesting talks, some technical, others more inspirational.

Generate Conference

Although I’ve been doing web development for several years, this was the first conference that I’d been to. To be honest, I wasn’t sure what to expect. I was afraid that the presentations would just be millions of slides and loads of code, and I’d be sat there looking around thinking am I the only one that doesn’t get this. Luckily, the code was kept to a minimum.

I tried to pick a wide variety of talks from both of the tracks at the conference to get the most out of it. The presentations were all really interesting and amazingly varied. It’s easy to forget that the role of a web developer includes so many disciplines, from databases, infrastructure, user interfaces, design, usability and accessibility.

Don’t be afraid to try something new!

One of the key messages throughout was “Don’t be afraid to try something new”. This was really brought home by the talk by Gavin Strange (a.k.a. JamFactory ) who was really encouraging saying you should keep trying out new things and not to compartment yourself. Become a jack of all trades.

There was a great presentation about CSS that talked about making mistakes, as long as you go back and figure out what happened and why the issue occured.

Keynotes

Both the opening and closing keynotes were great.

The first keynote talked about how to get in the right frame of mind to be creative. This is something that I hadn’t really thought about before. I just assumed you were either in a creative mood or not, but this opened my eyes to a new way of thinking that you can control your creativity and access it easier.

The closing keynote was about progressive enhancement and it also changed my way of thinking. If you make a website work without javascript then all browsers will support it. You can then enhance the website with javascript. You don’t need to make a website look exactly the same in every browser.

Would I go again?

Most definitely! It’s great to get out of the office and get some inspiration. I think you need to get out and get some fresh air and challenge the way you think about web development.

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