The remaining days were talk-centric. Development talks covered:
- Generative AI and the tools that utilize it in our industry such as code generation tools (like CoPilot, more on that later!) and 3D printers.
- Using transitions to take React apps to the next level with React 3 Fiber, Framer Motion, and React-Spring.
- Web development on the bleeding edge, where I learned about utilizing Vercel and edge workers along with pinning, which allows you to prevent (most) latency 🤯.
- Thinking like a hacker, and the easiest ways to avoid those attacks. Using security tools and integrating manual security checks into your workflows, along with regularly (but not too often) updating your dependencies.
- When testing AI, ensure that you are defining the capabilities you want to test for and make sure to test for biases. Sometimes, no AI is the right answer.
- The new stuff in CSS land was mind-boggling: Things like OKLCH, View transitions, and Container query units. Check them out.
- Becoming a CoPilot super user —Try writing high-level task descriptions, iterate on solutions, and keep relevant files open in the editor.
- The importance of mental models and how words matter: if a problem feels complicated, make it a human problem before you code it. Simplify where you can, to form a point of reference and understanding.
- Strategies for debugging the hard stuff: when you're in the weeds of bug hunting, slow down, take a break, and console.log will be your best friend.
- SSR with Suspense in React 18! It allows us to create a much smoother user experience with the fallbacks that suspense allows.
- Thinking across the framework barriers! Celebrating the diversity of frameworks and using the best parts of each to build framework-agnostic tools.
Not every talk at RenderATL was development focused, and there were plenty of chances to hear more about becoming a better manager (with some stellar info for devs moving toward that path):
- Being intentional about aspects of leadership such as giving feedback, encouraging ambitions, and knowing the mindset and impact goals of the person you’re supporting.
- Developer relations and how to encourage active communication, community contribution, and being your authentic self within the welcoming culture they’ve created (Echobind uses all of the suggested strategies ✨).
- Once you make that leap from dev work into managing, how to reflect on the type of manager you want to be (or NOT be), what your triggers are, and choosing when to be flexible versus when to be rigid.
The final talk focused on what’s next in web development and was prefaced with "You're going to hate this". It might be true since he was predicting a shift toward no-code solutions. As developers, we have the opportunity to either learn new tools or build better ones. Here's to the future!