Meet our hosts!
We are delighted to be working with 3 amazing co-organisers, web perf experts Jo Franchetti, Perry Dyball and Simon Hearne. They will not only be hosting the conference on the day, but are also helping us design and curate the programme and make the event something really special for the community. We thought we’d ask them a few questions about web performance, DeltaV and the amazing communities they are involved with.
How did you get into web performance?
Jo: I’m a front end dev, so performance is something I’ve learnt to take more seriously as my career has progressed. I’ve been lucky in that I’ve worked on projects that care about good performance and reaching a global audience. I’ve found that if your site is slow, people will tell you about it, and you’d better do something about it! I now advocate for the mobile web and building PWAs to improve the user’s experience.
Perry: Whilst working for Seatwave secondary ticketing marketplace in 2010, Take That decided to reform, and despite what you may think of the band, we knew it was going to be BIG. The team set about optimizing nearly every facet of the consumer service – database, backend code, front end, image services, queuing service – if it moved we optimized it. It paid off big time – when everyone else in online ticketing crashed we stayed up, and took a good proportion of their traffic. We were transacting like never before, 10 days worth of sales per hour went through the system until our competitors came back online.
Simon: My web performance story is one of serendipity: while living in a small town in Surrey with a daily commute to central London, a recruiter called and asked if I was interested in a web performance role at a company five minutes away. Within days of starting my role as a web performance consultant I knew I was in the right industry for me.
Why does web perf matter to you?
Jo: As a developer, I believe that web performance should be a principal consideration in everything that we build. Good performance can be the difference between your site being used vs never being touched. When we put our work on the web, we usually want as many people to see it as possible! Performance isn’t just about increasing revenue, it is also a question of ethics, who are you excluding by not considering performance, and what audiences are you missing out on?
Perry: As the first ever speaker at LDNWebPerf in Jan 2011 I guess you could say I have been around the space for quite some time. I have made many friends through the web community and I have real passion for it. After Stephen Thair moved on to form his own startup, I became organiser of LDNWebPerf in August 2014 and in 2016 converted it into a Community Interest Company. I have now arranged over 40 meetup events, workshops and conferences with a combined audience of over 4000 attendees. All talks are livestreamed/recorded and published at https://ldnwebperf.org
Simon: Web performance is the art of creating a great online experience. It covers such a wide range of topics – accessibility, security, inclusivity, architecture, design, user experience and, of course, site speed. What could be more fascinating than that?
Why are you excited about the conference?
Jo:A frustration that I’ve seen and heard time and time again is the difficulty of getting conversations about performance flowing smoothly between developers, product owners, designers, any members of a digital team. DeltaV will equip its attendees with take away lessons about why performance matters and how to start tackling it. I am looking forward to getting everyone on the same page and hearing about all the excellent conversations and changes that take place after!
Perry: Since Velocity Conference decided to move away from web performance, especially in Europe, I amongst others have harboured plans to fill that void for our community. It was too big to do on our own so hence we have joined with White October Events to put it on. Seeing the amazing speakers we have for DeltaV, the fantastic response we’ve had to the Call For Papers, and working with the industry and hearing their support for the event, all makes it very exciting to be putting on a conference that we hope will be a fixture in the calendar. I do like a party!
Simon: DeltaV is an opportunity for the web performance industry to redefine itself. There have been two types of web performance conferences in the past: IT-focussed and Marketing-focussed. By bringing together the multiple disciplines in web performance to a single event we will create incredible outcomes.
Why do you think the community needs a conference like DeltaV?
Perry: The absence of a true web performance conference that covers all aspects of web delivery – front end, back end, bots, services, 3rd parties, accessibility et al, relates performance to bottom line business kpi’s and enables a much stronger conversation between engineers and the business.
Simon:There is already a great community in web performance, but it’s missing an annual event to bring the community together to discuss the latest developments and exciting trends in the industry. DeltaV will provide this event, but is also more open and inclusive to the broader aspects of web performance – accessibility, architecture, design, user experience etc. This means that the content will provide more value than ever before to anyone who works on a web presence!
Jo: I think Perry and Simon have covered it! 🙂
What’s your top web perf tip?
Jo: Consider web perf right from the get go. Take the time to really consider all aspects of performance before you start a new project or feature. Talk about it with your whole team, set targets and schedule in the time to work on them.
Perry: Don’t give up. Measure, change and measure again. Talk to the business. Don’t give up.
Simon: Have someone in charge of web performance (sub-tips: socialise performance stats on big dashboards, celebrate the performance wins, focus on real-world experience, realise that you are not measuring enough, measure more things, repeat).