JQuery UK 2013

On Friday, I made the short trip across to Oxford for the 2013 jQuery UK conference.

I was especially excited to be attending, as not only would I be giving a talk at the event myself, but I had managed to bag entry to the speakers dinner the night before the conference thanks to rather luckily winning a Twitter competition run by White October.

The speakers dinner was a massive highlight for me. Meeting some of the people I most admire in our industry would have been awesome at the best of times, but was especially true when sharing a beer on a canal boat traveling along the Oxford canals. The conversation was excellent and as someone trying to get into speaking myself, was really inspiring for me personally.

The event itself was as slickly organised as you would expect, and the talks didn't disappoint. Of the many things I took away from the talks, a few topics particularly peaked my interest.

Remy Sharp gave a brave talk warning of the danger of simply throwing jQuery at our projects, giving common examples of when you don't need to use it over native JS. His minimal JS library on github looks very useful in terms of replicating some of jQuery's basic tools without having to throw the whole library at your project. If anyone has learned JS through jQuery, I would highly recommend watching Remy's talk, as it gives some great advice on how to make the next steps into native JavaScript.

The other talk that really interested me was Doug Neiner's introduction to Machina.js, a finite state machine framework created by Jim Cowart. It enables you to keep track of state in your applications in a very clean way, avoiding the need for potentially complex nested comparisons littered throughout your code. I would definitely recommend watching Doug's talk when it gets put online, as I think Machina could be a very useful framework and has great potential in it's application on projects.

Of course, the other highlight of the conference for me was getting to give my talk about Responsive Interaction Patterns on the Rising Stars track. Although taking place at the same time as the main conference speakers, I was really grateful that around 40 people came to see my talk. Thanks to those who tweeted me afterwards saying they enjoyed it; it was a great experience for me and has really whet my appetite to speak at future events.

My slides are available online now, and do get in touch if you have any feedback or questions relating to the talk.