Speaking at React Alicante

November 07, 2017

Recently I’ve given a talk at the React Alicante conference. It was a pleasure to be invited to such a great event, which deserves special applause as it was the organisers’ first conference. Kudos to them!

Custom React Alicante stickers
We know how much developers are into stickers, so we prepared a custom treat for them.

It was also great to be able to contribute, by both sharing our ideas and sponsoring the conference. We think there’s a lot of potential in the Spanish programming community that needs to be fostered.

The talk I gave touched on a few ideas that have been brewing in my head for the last couple of years. First of them is about our identity as programmers. We like to define ourselves using names of technology we work with: JS Developer, Front-end Engineer, React Expert, etc. I think it’s both limiting for us internally, as well as it creates external barriers that hinder our growth. Instead of building a barrier that separates the technology that “is ours” and all the other that is “theirs”, we should try to learn what’s on the other side and see whether it’s something we can use to improve our daily work.

Wojciech giving the talk
Wojciech spreading polyglot propaganda.

Another thing that I think was important to talk about is a love-hate relationship with JavaScript. On one hand, nobody knows its shortcomings better than people that work with it every single day. But at the same time, those developers accept the flaws and build tools upon tools to “fix” those problems. However, in my opinion, it’s much better to fix a problem by removing something, than to keep adding stuff. Nowadays there are hundreds of language that compile to JavaScript, some of them good, some of them bad, most of them with a unique set of tradeoffs. I’m surprised how uncommon it is for developers to reach out for any of them. We feel like this is such a big barrier to cross — learn another language. Well, it only gets easier the more you do it. That’s why I wanted to talk about what the options are for writing React Native at the moment.

Enjoy React Alicante
Hope you enjoyed the conference as much as we did!

Unfortunately, due to time limitations, I wasn’t able to demo my current favourite language, but not all is lost. At React Day Berlin I want to expand on this idea, so if that’s something you find interesting just get your ticket, book your flight and see you there!

I’d be more than happy to exchange ideas about React Native development! That is one thing I missed at React Alicante — it seemed like virtually all of the attendees were interested in the web side of things, not in the mobile side. Well, at least I got exposed to ideas that are from outside of my barriers!

However, if you don’t feel like waiting till December, you can also watch a video of this talk, as it has been freshly released by the React Alicante organisers:

If you want to stay up-to-date with what’s going on with us and what interesting tech are we looking at currently, just subscribe to our newsletter. Especially if the talk got you interested in ReasonML, we’ll be digging into this subject pretty soon!

Blog author: Wojciech Ogrodowczyk

Wojciech Ogrodowczyk

Software developer

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