HTML5 Developers Conference Returns to San Francisco

Above: Kyle Simpson's talk, HTML5 JavaScript on Crack, presented at HTML5 Dev Conf last May.

In just under a month thousands of code hungry developers will converge under the gilded ceilings and crystal chandeliers of San Francisco's historic Palace Hotel to devour two days worth of trainings, talks, and parties at the largest HTML5 and JavaScript conference in the world: the HTML5 Developers Conference (HTML5 DevConf). But why should you, or your employees, go?

HTML5 DevConf is a grassroots conference, by developers, for developers. This year the conference has been expanded to 2 days, and features talks by the likes of Paul Irish of Google, Chris Heilmann of Mozilla, and Faruk Ates of four53. Some big-name speakers from the last conference, like Peter Lubbers and Steve Souders, are returning as well. Plus it’s sponsored by major players like Intel and Mozilla Firefox, so the conference has no shortage of clout.

“We think this years conference is the strongest technical one we've ever had,” says founder Ann Burkett. As a developer, Burkett started working on games at Macromedia Shockwave, where she helped develop some of the first hit browser-based games in the world. She came up with the idea for HTML5 DevConf while on the road in summer 2011.

“I was wondering what technologies lay ahead for the mobile web,” Burkett thought, while attending Casual Connect in Seattle, “I didn't see an HTML5 conference in San Francisco and I was foolish enough to try and start one. I didn't know if anyone would show up.”

The first conference was held in September of that year. Burkett expected about 300 people to attend; almost 1000 people showed up. Since then the venue, number of days, speakers, and sponsors have only grown.

What separates HTML5 DevConf from other tech conferences, though? For starters, it's cheap. Tickets can be had right now for $139. “It's unique to San Francisco,” says Dave Nugent, one of the conference's organizers. “It's priced as a grassroots conference, in a location which usually only affords expensive, thousand dollar plus tickets, and yet the quality of the speakers and the venue is every bit as high as the expensive conferences.”

Nugent, an SF based freelance developer who runs the SF JavaScript and GameJS Meetups, began working with the conference earlier this year.

“We have experts who are giving their time to meet with our attendees one-on-one,” Nugent says, “we also have a lot more sponsors. Our goal is to continue to be the largest conference in this space while offering the highest quality technical talks. The conference is aimed at technical developers and technical management. We've found that our audience is not impressed by big-name CEOs or product talks. They want to see people who write beautiful code.”

For more information on the conference, check out the HTML5 Dev Conf website. Tickets available via Eventbrite.

Check out some of our coverage from the last HTML5 Dev Conf here.


Published September 1, 2012