Angular Connect 2015

By Mark Buss

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Angular Connect was the biggest dedicated Angular conference to date, taking place over two days at the ExCel centre in London. It was the first conference I’ve attended since joining Makemedia and I was excited to see what was in the pipeline for a platform I’ve used extensively over the last twelve months.

Many of our projects use this popular Javascript framework, allowing us to develop fast, dynamic web applications in a modular way. It’s reliance on Javascript should always be taken into account when making the technology choice for your project, but when used appropriately it’s a powerful platform upon which to build a digital product.

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The conference featured two tracks of talks, so unfortunately for every talk I attended, I was missing another. Thankfully all talks were being recorded and have been made available through the Angular Connect website. Check them out at http://angularconnect.com/sessions

Angular 2.0

Angular 2.0 was the hot topic of discussion; many of the talks outlined the improvements it would make over Angular 1, as well as how developers can start preparing their code to upgrade. It was great to see the benefits this update will bring, such as performance improvements and a simpler syntax.

Sadly it won’t be production ready until 2016, and there’s currently no official release date. Although we can start experimenting with these new features immediately, we can’t integrate it into any of our client applications just yet.

Typescript

TypeScript was also high on the agenda. JavaScript is a very flexible programming language which doesn’t require you to specify everything explicitly – this flexibility can be useful, but also makes it hard to debug code before deployment (not so great). TypeScript is a language that sits on top of JavaScript, highlighting code that would break if deployed.

Many of the live code demos at Angular Connect used TypeScript and it seems to have been widely adopted across the Angular community. We have already started experimenting with TypeScript at Makemedia to help us write better code, faster.

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The conference was very well run and even included a “Back to the Future” themed party on the first night, with their very own Angular Ale.

And the all important conference swag? I came home with 3 tee shirts, a water bottle, coffee mug, Google Cardboard, portable phone charger, yoyo, and (of course) a sticky brain in a pot.

The development team at Makemedia are going to be busy doing some more investigation into what I learned at Angular Connect. I’d recommend anyone working with Angular or interested in exploring what it’s capable of try and attend in future.

I’ll see you there next year!

Mark’s top talks from Angular Connect 2015

“Write once, run anywhere” with nw.js & Cordova  – A great presentation demonstrating a simple Angular web application (using features such as camera capture) converted to run as a native application for Android, iOS, Windows Phone, Windows and Mac.

Turn the performance knob to 11 - Some useful pointers on how and when to make performance optimisations to Angular code.

Using Web Workers for more responsive apps – An impressive talk sharing how to harness the power of client side processing using Web Workers.

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