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On September 29th and 30th the code.talks conference took place again in Hamburg. We were there with four people.
The code.talks claims to be the "biggest class meeting of the developer community" - a title that hits the bull's eye. With more than 1500 participants and over 110 lectures on two days, the conference can justifiably be described as big. Due to this size, you will definitely meet many familiar faces here, which makes the class trip character strong. At the same time you have the opportunity to get to know many new people and make new contacts. The same can be said about the choice of speakers. While going through the program I could already discover some well-known names in advance and look forward to their talks. But also some of the speakers I had never heard before surprised me very positively with their presentations.
The disadvantage of conferences with many parallel sessions is often that one is faced with the agony of having to decide on a lecture and thus miss out on another, perhaps similarly interesting one. Due to the enormous variety of topics in the code.talks, this problem almost solves itself. The individual tracks have such different thematic focuses that at least I had no problems finding the right presentation in each session. Most of the time I spent in hall 2, where the focus was on the frontend.
I was particularly pleased not only by the variety and depth of the topics and techniques presented, but also by the noticeable interest in them. Occasionally the lectures were so well attended that besides the cinema seats also the stairs were occupied and for a lecture even interested people had to be sent away because the hall was too full. For me this has again clearly shown how rapidly the frontend world has developed in the last few years. It feels good to notice that all fronts are thinking forward and stagnation is not even remotely imaginable.
Besides the lectures themselves, the ambience and the location itself is definitely the highlight of the conference. With its cinema screens, the Cinemaxx at Dammtor provides an absolutely unforgettable lecture atmosphere. Even in the smaller halls, code examples could be easily read right up to the back row. And to see one or the other animated GIF, or memes on a gigantic screen, can be something special :-D Another advantage to listen to lectures in a cinema hall are the comfortable cinema seats. Especially in the morning after the social event they could show their advantages clearly.
The catering was as impressive as some of the lectures. Thanks to the extremely tasty buffet, no one really had to suffer from hunger. And if you still felt an empty feeling in your stomach, you could still help yourself with a coke and the free nachos or popcorn.
Das Social Event fand dieses Jahr im NoHo auf der Reeperbahn statt. Mit seinen vielen Ebenen und der beiden Dachterrassen auf dem obersten Floor ist dieser Club schon etwas besonderes. Bedingt durch den Diskocharakter des NoHos war es nur leider schwierig richtig mit anderen Konferenzteilnehmern ins Gespräch zu kommen. Dafür konnte bis in die Nacht hinein ausgelassen getanzt und gefeiert werden. Und auch wenn das Bier zwischendurch mehrmals aus war, konnte doch jedes mal relativ schnell für Nachschub gesorgt werden, so dass dem intensiven Feiern bis in die Nacht hinein nichts im Wege stand.
Abgesehen von der code.talks selbst ist Hamburg allerdings auch immer wieder eine Reise wert. Insbesondere wenn man dezentral miteinander arbeitet, ist es wichtig die Gesichter von Zeit zu Zeit mal nicht nur über den Bildschirm zu sehen. Deshalb haben wir unseren Aufenthalt noch auf den Donnerstag nach der Konferenz ausgedehnt, um gemeinsam zu essen, durch Hamburgs wunderschöne Innenstadt zu radeln und gemütlich über die Elbe zu schippern. So sind wir nach drei Tagen voller neuer Eindrücke, Feiern und guter Gesellschaft zwar alle sehr erschöpft, aber auch voller Tatendrang und guter Dinge nach Hause zurückgekehrt.
Finally, I would like to briefly present some of the most interesting lectures for me. Unfortunately there are no video recordings of the individual lectures. Maybe a point that could make the code.talks even better next year?
Dependency Injection is one of the most powerful and hidden tools we have in modern software development. Pascal Precht first explained very simply what exactly DI is and how the concept works technically. On this basis he was able to show how the DI concept developed further in Angular 2 and which problems can be solved by new strategies in the implementation. It was especially nice that not only learning for Angular 2 in particular could be taken away from this lecture, but also many things could be transferred to other SPA frameworks, like Ember, or React. In general it was nice to see that there is a lively exchange between all major frameworks. Similar to the world of browser manufacturers, there seems to be more concern about standards and stronger decapsulation of business logic for the framework itself. Ultimately, everyone wants the Web to win as such. A good feeling :-)
Testing is important. Everybody knows it, but for many people it is still a topic that still doesn't get enough attention. Dave Brotherstone shows in this talk how testing in the frontend can look like today and presents many tools that make writing tests a lot easier. Very impressive to see how strongly the testing culture has developed over the last few years and definitely a motivator.