London JavaScript Night

I’ve just gotten back from LJS. It was an excellent evening of talks (bar mine, I feel). The two talks I really wanted to see (“JavaScript Idioms” by Paul Hammond and “JavaScript Taste Testing” by Simon Willison) were superb.

Paul Hammond gave a very good overview of why things often look a bit funny in JavaScript, but are actually sensibly thought out. His idioms in other languages managed to draw puzzled looks and laughs in almost equal amount.

Simon did a whirlwind tour of Dojo, Prototype, the Yahoo UI Library and MochiKit. It was a pretty well thought out and explained piece of work. He did a good job of showing where the tradeoffs lie in each case. It’s also made me realise how much I need to try the alternate toolkits to get a feel for them… (NB: Apparently YUI makes a best effort at accessibility for its widgets, which sounds like a Good Thing™).

Of the remaining talks, I really enjoyed Dan Webb’s DOMBuilder, which strikes me a an extremely elegant solution to the verbosity of the DOM.

Tom Insam’s enthusiasm for E4X was extremely entertaining, despite the ending (“It’s hardly worth bothering”).

It was a difficult act to follow, and to be honest, I completely tanked. I had expected about 30 people, and there were around 200. Plus my topic was relatively obscure to most people. Ah well. Next time I’ll find a better subject (and practise more beforehand). Oh, and get a proper PDF presentation instead of S5. That would have been much easier to handle. BTW, the slides are up.

Hopefully the slides for the remaining talks will be up in the next day or two.

A big thanks to Greg McCarroll for organising it all in the first place. Good job, Greg.