26 Nov

Full Frontal 2009

Last week I was lucky enough to get to attend Full Frontal 2009 in Brighton with a whole bunch of my colleagues to lend a bit of support to friend and fellow Glow developer, Jake, after his previous highly successful first foray into the world of speaking at last year’s @media ajax.

The range of topics was excellent. It was really good to see some more people speaking about server-side JavaScript and it seems that Simon Willison’s talk and demo of node.js was a particular highlight for a lot of people and certainly seemed inspiring (which is possibly why he’s always such a good last speaker).

I’m never terribly good at taking notes, but I didn’t think there was an off session of the day. PPK wowed us with the frankly impossible task that is mobile browser testing, Todd Kloots did one of the better and more thorough introductions to ARIA and accessible JavaScript development talks I’ve seen (and it’s a shame he ran out of time), and Robert Nyman did a gallant job of explaining closures and currying (amongst other things, via the inexplicable medium of Ben Affleck) – both of which I think are akin to explaining string-theory to primary-schoolers.

Of course, I’m slightly biased and I really want to tell you everyone else is just being kind and he actually sucked, but even though I’d already seen Jake’s “Optimising where it hurts” practice run-throughs and had already heard many of his jokes and examples, I still laughed throughout and thoroughly enjoyed his animated way of explaining the topic (which he does fluently and coherantly) and thought he stole the day.

Generally, I thought the day was a total success. The venue was lovely (although it’s a shame it wasn’t a slight bit more central, and the rain always sucks) as it was a fully-functional cinema – seats were comfortable and the quality of the screen and sound were excellent. Everything seemed to be organised extremely well and can’t really fault it, so big congrats to Remy and his lovely wife, and all the helpers. I really hope they organise one again next year – I’ll definitely be there.

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