jQuery Russia 2013

Last week I attended jQuery Russia 2013 which was held at Digital October (my favorite venue) in Moscow. The conference was organized by a local HR company called ITmozg and they’ve done a fairly good job.

jQuery Russia 2013

Dave Methvin, President of the jQuery Foundation, gave the opening keynote and a session on javascript and jQuery performance, which was really good. He called out Facebook for a pretty bad infinite scroll pattern, one that causes a forced layout on every scroll event.

He also mentioned that people often refer to jQuery being slow, and most of the time it’s not even jQuery’s fault:

This is not jQuery being slow, it’s that bad jQuery plugin.

Which sounds very familiar in the world of WordPress, themes and plugins. Dave also did a quick javascript profiling 101 using IE11 (which looks pretty amazing) and Chrome’s developer tools.

The other noteworthy session was Eric Mann’s about web sockets, and a pretty interesting Menehune library for jQuery.

Overall, the event was okay. Not great! But okay. I guess I was expecting more out of a $400 conference, stuffed with sponsors (including the stage), or maybe I’m just used to WordCamps :) Anyway, I met a bunch of folks, a few old friends. I didn’t stay for the after-party, but I’m pretty sure it was good.

Will I attend next year? Probably not.

WordPress Kitchen Ukraine 2013

Last week I attended WordPress Kitchen in Kiev, Ukraine – a little informal conference about all things WordPress. One whole day with around 70 attendees, 9 sessions and a great deal of fun.

WordPress Kitchen Ukraine 2013

I learned about WordPress Kitchen a few weeks before the event and immediately reached out to the organizing team to see what they were up to. The event was mostly organized by Pingbull, a web development agency scattered between Oslo, Stockholm and Kiev. They were all super friendly and nice.

The event was held in an anti-cafe called Besedniza. Nine sessions total, one in English, one in Ukrainian and the rest in Russian. The speakers were mostly developers, quite a few of them from Pingbull. They covered some interesting topics, most of which were directly related to WordPress, including a session about why one should not pick WordPress.

The after-party was at a bar nearby, with some food, lots of drinks, jokes, laughter and a boxing match between Klitschko and Povetkin — Klitschko obviously won.

This was my first time in Kiev and my first time in Ukraine. I stayed there for three days in quite a nice hotel called Alfavito. Walking around the streets felt a lot like Russia, especially Magnitogorsk – the city I lived in right before I moved to Moscow.

Huge thanks to everyone involved in making WordPress Kitchen happen. I hope to come back to Ukraine very soon for another WordPress event or two, hopefully leading up to the first WordCamp Ukraine in 2014.

WordPress Speed and Performance Session from WordCamp Russia

I gave this talk in a couple of weeks ago at the very first WordCamp Russia 2013 which was a big success (will publish a recap separately).

It covers most of the basics: what is site speed and why it’s important, a little bit of object caching, transient caching, page caching, opcode caching, browser caching, image compression, etc. Before you hit “Play”, please note that the video is in Russian :)

If you have any questions, I’ll happily reply via comments or Twitter, both in English and Russian.

WordCamp Russia is in less than a week!

WordCamp Russia 2013

I first thought of making a WordCamp in Russia a little over three years ago, when I was running a web development shop in Moscow. I had filled out my application form and was a single click away from applying. I don’t quite remember what stopped me back then, but whatever it was, thank god!

I had no idea what it is like to organize a WordCamp, in fact, I haven’t been to a single WordCamp back then, except for a live stream or two. A lot of things have changed in the past three years: I attended, spoke and volunteered at quite a few WordCamps, I ran a monthly WordPress meetup for over a year, I made friends with many pro WordCamp organizers across the planet, and today I’m happy to announce that…

WordCamp Russia 2013 is this Saturday! If I had to express my excitement in exclamation marks, the MySQL server would try to return a result set which is too large and fail with a timeout error.

Everything is going fairly smoothly and we’re slowly approaching that OMGWTFBBQ planning phase. Watch out for recap posts in the coming weeks and don’t hesitate to visit us if you’re in Moscow this weekend.