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Chicago Camps

Front-end Camp

Saturday, June 3, 2017

Columbia College Film Row – Chicago

Photo: Bhaskar Peddhapati

Details

If you want to ramp up your HTML, CSS, Javascript, and throw in a bit of UX and Design for good measure, Front-end Camp is the event you won’t want to miss!

It takes a lot to stay current when you work in front-end design and development, and Front-end Camp will bring you presentations that help you level up. We’ll provide you with a full-day of presentations on the topics that are important to you, from speakers who bring the front-end knowledge and all for a great price that includes your lunch.

Meet Our Awesome Sponsors

These fantastic sponsors are helping us bring this great event to you.

Keynotes

Jen Myers

Jen Myers
Curriculum Director of Software Developer Content, Pluralsight

Jen Myers is a technologist, speaker and educator, and currently a Curriculum Director of Software Developer Content at Pluralsight. She has been involved with Girl Develop It, an organization that provides introductory programming classes for women, as a chapter leader, instructor and advisor since 2011 and founded a series of mother/daughter coding workshops called Code and Cupcakes Chicago. She has spoken widely about design, development and diversity, and focuses on finding new ways to make both technology and technology education accessible to everyone.

For more, keep up with Jen at jenmyers.net or on Twitter as @antiheroine.

Move at a Reasonable Speed & Balance Things

We know that the rapid pace of technology makes a challenging task for its creators and practitioners to keep up with its perpetual innovations. Those of us who inhabit the nebulous front-end design/development world, with its constantly changing tools and complexity, know this truth twice over. All of which suggests that it’s worthwhile to pause from time to time to think about how we think about it all. Let’s consider how the speed of technology affects our product quality, our continuing education and our community connection, and whether or not the philosophies we often use to navigate this world are likely lead us to the result we really want.

Jim Remsik

Jim Remsik
Founder, ‎Adorable IO

A world-renowned hugger, community instigator, and speaker who genuinely desires success in those around him and does what he can to make that happen. Jim has spent his career building teams which led to the founding of Adorable. He is a connector of people and problem-solver with a varied background that includes roles such as: Short-order Cook, Printing Apprentice, Wedding Photographer, and Backwards Stock Car Driver.

He makes mistakes, especially, on stage. This should be fun.

For more, keep up with Jim at adorable.io or on Twitter as @jremsikjr.

Trust

As developers we’re part of a mesh of decisions large and small that impact the world around us. All of us have a set of tools that we use to address problems which is built on our experience. As we act together with others our collection of tools grows as do the expectations on us and those around us.

Schedule

Registration & Breakfast
Jen Myers
Move at a Reasonable Speed & Balance Things Keynote
Morning Break
Rooms Blue (Main) Red Yellow
Stacy Kvernmo
The Great State of Design with CSS Grid Layout & Friends
Jessica Bertling
Tale of Two Redesigns
Taylor Poulos
Ironing Pixels – How to Achieve Perfect Type on the Web
Break
Kurt Cunningham
Let’s Refactor That Sass
Chris Courtney
Beyond the Show: The Making of Job-Ready Designers
Arlo Bryan Guthrie
So They Agreed to a Design System. Now What?
Lunch
John Polacek
Rethinking CSS: Go Functional for Scaling, Performance & Simplicity
Kavitha Krishnan
Dark Patterns
Rudy Rigot
Human Scaling on the Front-End
Break
Rebecca Miller-Webster
All About the Client & Server
Brad Larson
HTML5 Animation & Advertising
Brian Montana
Through the Lens of Design as a Developer
Afternoon Snack
Jim Remsik
Trust Keynote
Closing Ceremonies

Speakers

Arlo Bryan Guthrie

Arlo Bryan Guthrie
Lead Design Developer, Sprout Social

Arlo Bryan Guthrie is Sprout Social’s Lead Design Developer, focusing on the design system for our flagship web application and other online properties. He’s a devoted family man and an amateur whiskey snob. His parents were too young to name children.

For more, keep up with Arlo at arlo.me or on Twitter as @arlodesign.

So They Agreed to a Design System. Now What?

You demonstrated the benefits, you gave several presentations, and they gave your design system proposal a +1. Where do you go from here? In this presentation, I’ll talk about the early steps Sprout Social took to ensure their design system got off to a strong start. Identify your stakeholders, set their expectations early, and demonstrate empathy for their needs. Learn from our mistakes and successes. We’ll even dive into a little code to demonstrate how our specific needs helped us determine when to use a third-party solution and when to build something ourselves.

Brad Larson

Brad Larson
Founder of Waterfall Media & Co-Founder of BannerWave

Brad comes from a background in Flash, animation, and video and originally made his living through Flash work. Several years ago, his company made the transition to HTML5. Right now their focus is high-end HTML5 advertising and marketing.

For more, keep up with Brad at bannerwave.com or on Twitter as @panguino.

HTML5 Animation & Advertising

Brad will be discussing some of the challenges of digital design and animation. He will show how they solve some of those issues at BannerWave. In doing so, he will cover display ads and how BannerWave is innovating advertising on the web.

Brian Montana

Brian Montana
Senior Interface Developer, Blast Radius

Brian Montana is a former Marine, cancer survivor and interactive creator. He has a Masters of Fine Art in New Media and is currently working as a Senior Interface Developer at Blast Radius, he’s worked with clients such as BMW, ISACA, Reynolds, P&G, Merck, Takeda, Blue Bunny, AMA, Astellas, Ricola, Paris Presents and more. Brian wields technology and an artistic gaze, merging aesthetics and function into his process to harmonize communication between development and design. Often you can find Brian at a museum or art gallery continually exploring his love of education, exhibitions and art.

For more, keep up with Brian at brianmontana.net or on Twitter as @brianmontanaweb.

Through the Lens of Design as a Developer

The discussions in digital workflow have focused on the expectation of the designer communicating and thinking like a developer, an artifact of the waterfall workflow. The dynamic of the emerging workflow, repositions the conversations away from the canon and invites others to use empathy when collaborating on projects.

The talk will cover how I communicate as a developer through the perspective of designer and how making a designers life easier makes the current and future projects easier to manage.

Chris Courtney

Chris Courtney
Director of the Design Program, Bloc.io

Chris is the Director of the Design Program at Bloc.io, an online education startup based in San Francisco, California. At Bloc, he draws upon 20 years of design experience building brands and products to prepare the next wave of designers how to push beyond how something looks and focus on why it matters. When he’s not busy building design students, he can be found trying out new tech gadgets, consulting with media startups, and running marathons.

For more, keep up with Chris at designhawg.com or on Twitter as @designhawg.

Beyond the Show: The Making of Job-Ready Designers

Every year thousands of designers graduate from our educational institutions, yet many are not hired even though thousands of open positions go unfilled. Why is that? At Bloc, we’ve had conversations with hundreds of design program graduates and the design leaders who have hired them. This gives us a very good read on how graduates successfully land jobs as well as what design leaders see in these graduates that makes them want to bring them on. This talk will break apart what the ideal design graduate looks like to industry and investigate how we as educators can prepare the next wave of graduates to have a greater chance of success.

Jessica Bertling

Jessica Bertling
UX Deveveloper, NewBoCo, & Code Instructor, DeltaV Code School

Jessica Bertling is an avid gardener and loves to help things grow, especially ideas. After receiving her degree in Digital Media and Design she spent eight years in e-commerce, specializing in user experience design and front end web development. She now works for NewBoCo, parent organization of the Iowa Startup Accelerator, where she works with startups and local corporations to build innovative products. She’s also an instructor at DeltaV, Iowa’s premier code school, where she teaches front end web development.

For more, keep up with Jessica at jessica-bertling.com or on Twitter as @jbertling.

Tale of Two Redesigns

As we move into a world of continuous deployment, divided work, fast moving ops teams and agile time boxes, how does something like a full responsive site overhaul or site redesign get accomplished without a mess of conflicts or new development freezes? What happens when you take two sister companies, both on the Internet Retailer Top 500 list, and try two completely different approaches? We’ll talk about what we learned, show you some pitfalls to avoid, and how we ultimately completed a successful full site responsive redesign in "bite sized" pieces, independent of other development, without disrupting the customer experience.

John Polacek

John Polacek
Lead Web Developer, Gesture

John Polacek leads front end at Gesture, the mobile fundraising platform for charity events, and is the author of many open source projects like Expressive CSS, Stacktable, Responsivator, BigVideo.js and Scrollorama.

For more, keep up with John at johnpolacek.com or on Twitter as @johnpolacek.

Rethinking CSS: Go Functional for Scaling, Performance & Simplicity

We can be our own worst enemies when it comes to creating CSS architectures. Functional CSS is a simple approach to creating and following consistent design patterns that lead to performant web applications at scale. If you do it right, the older a project gets, the less CSS you write. The only catch is that you may have to change the way you think.

We will look at real world applications of this technique, and show how you can apply it, from prototypes to large scale mature web applications.

Kavitha Krishnan

Kavitha Krishnan
Senior UX Strategist, Mattel

Kavitha Krishnan aka lifelong champion for UX is a passionate UX professional who enjoys solving problems, organizing information and designing interactions. Currently, she is a Senior UX Strategist with Mattel, WI after working for companies like EMC Corporation, Dell, SmartBear and American Family Insurance and CUNA Mutual Group.

Kavitha has a Masters in Computer Applications from India and worked as a software programmer before entering the magical world of UX. She also has a masters in Engineering Management from Tufts University and is currently pursing a masters in Human Factors in Information Design from Bentley University. Recently, Kavitha formed a local chapter for Ladies that UX in Madison, WI.

Dark Patterns

A dark pattern is when an user interface includes carefully concealed tricks that lead users into doing things they might not otherwise do. When we see a “bad design,” we imagine the creator as being sloppy or lazy – but without ill intent. Dark patterns, on the other hand, are not mistakes. They're carefully crafted based on a solid understanding of human psychology, and they do not have the user’s interests in mind. Dark patterns aren’t limited to the web.

Most of us encounter dark patterns in UX on a regular basis and may not realize it. It’s not surprising – the dark side of user experience isn’t something we like to talk about in the UX community. After all, UX is a force for good.

In this talk, I will share a few examples of dark patterns in UX, types of dark patters – trick question, forced continuity, misdirection and roach motel. I will dive into the psychology behind these dark patterns and how they can impact business relationship with their users. I will also share a few suggestions on how you can modify dark patterns to become a force for good, an honest pattern.

Kurt Cunningham

Kurt Cunningham
Co-Founder, Made by Munsters

Kurt is a motivated and adaptive innovative thinker who enjoys data-driven design and development. His passion for finding the best possible experience is matched by only his love for the Iowa Hawkeyes.

For more, keep up with Kurt at kurtcunningham.com or on Twitter as @KurtCunningham.

Let’s Refactor That Sass

Sass is a powerful pre-processor. That’s a given. Since it’s release Sass has helped designers and front-end developer’s create more modular stylesheets. But it’s so much more than just variables and nested selectors. By using functions, mixins, and yes, even extends, we can write powerful design architectures in less code and better prepare our systems for future feature development.

Let’s take advantage of all that Sass provides us. Over the years, I’ve seen—and made—many common mistakes in Sass that could be cleaned up with some refactoring. “Let’s refactor that Sass” is a phrase my co-workers are sick of hearing. But, it’s something I find myself saying on a daily basis. And something, hopefully, you’ll be saying too.

Rebecca Miller-Webster

Rebecca Miller-Webster
Practice Lead, DevMynd

Rebecca Miller-Webster is a software engineer, conference organizer, and educator. She is the founder of Write/Speak/Code and Practice Lead at DevMynd. Rebecca has been developing software professionally for over a dozen years, previously organized GORUCO, and was the founding teacher at Dev Bootcamp NYC. Rebecca’s hobbies include drinking Cherry Coke Zero, wearing trousers, telling computers what to do, cuddling pugs, and wearing all the colors.

For more, keep up with Rebecca at rebeccamiller-webster.com or on Twitter as @rmillerwebster.

All About the Client & Server

New JavaScript frameworks and libraries popping up everywhere. Code that was once only on the server is now performing beautifully on the client. Data that once only lived in one part of your application is needed everywhere.

But the truth is that the internet — its fundamental protocols and constraints — hasn’t changed much in the last couple decades. We’ve just gotten better at working within those constraints. Maybe we’ve gotten too good.

Let’s discuss the fundamentals of interacting with the client and the server. We’ll discuss the basic ways to connect JavaScript with a web application using examples in Ruby on Rails and other web frameworks. You’ll leave the talk able to assess the best approach for your app’s needs, communicate with your backend team and a deeper understanding of how the libraries and frameworks you use work under the hood.

Rudy Rigot

Rudy Rigot
Lead Software Engineer, Salesforce

Rudy is brand new to Chicago, and loving every bit of it! In a previous life, he was a software engineer at Apple for a while, founded his own startup (Holberton School, a 2-year software engineering school in San Francisco that is still running today), wrote a technical book in French about responsive web design before it was cool, is currently writing a second one about the Go language, and gave a lot of conference talks when he was in France, where he’s from. Today, he is a lead software engineer at Salesforce (proudly the only product engineer sitting in the Salesforce Chicago offices!), working on Salesforce’s in-app user assistance features.

For more, keep up with Rudy on Twitter as @rudyrigot.

Human Scaling on the Front-End

Your product (or your client’s product) is kicking butt, and the userbase is ever growing, allowing to hire more engineers to build more experimental features, more interactions, more experiences in your product. Soon, a dreadful problem starts arising: how do you ensure that one team’s work in your crowd of engineers doesn’t unwillingly break or impact another team’s front-end work? How do you scale humans on the front-end while limiting risk?

We’ll briefly look at how that problem is being solved on the back-end in large companies (Google, Apple, Uber, Salesforce) to see what we can learn from it for the front-end, and then we’ll dive in the opportunities that current front-end framework are leveraging. We’ll discuss component-based approaches in particular, since they’re designed as a solution to that problem, and will review the solutions they bring, but also the new challenges, and what future we can expect to them.

Stacy Kvernmo

Stacy Kvernmo
Senior Interaction Designer, OddBird

With over 15 years of experience, Stacy takes the lead at OddBird on interface design and development, architecting accessible and maintainable front-end code using a styleguide-first process. She enjoys experimenting with new design processes and tools as well as new web technologies like CSS Grid Layout. When she isn’t at her computer she is at the gymnastics gym training for her first gymnastics meet as an adult.

For more, keep up with Stacy at codepen.io/stacy or on Twitter as @stacykvernmo.

The Great State of Design with CSS Grid Layout & Friends

For far too long we’ve been forced to reuse layout patterns that have worked in the past, creating a web full of sites that all look the same. Lack of browser support, no true layout system, and designers who are forced to make safe decisions for budget or timeline reasons have led us to create work that is rarely creative nor inspiring.

I’ve spent years exploring how we can make the web a more unique space. Many CSS properties have been overlooked, but support has grown and many of these features are available now or can be used as enhancements. One of these new features is CSS Grid Layout, which will play a major role in layout design. Having a true, 2 dimensional grid will give our layouts much more flexibility and it is on us to explore the possibilities.

Taylor Poulos

Taylor Poulos
Designer, Moment

Taylor is a designer and writer, currently working at Moment in New York, New York. He started making software when he was twelve, eventually focusing in UX design and research.

At Carnegie Mellon University of Pittsburgh PA, he majored in Information Systems, Human-Computer Interaction, and Creative Writing, and was heavily involved in the hackathon community. As a hacker and a hackathon organizer, he worked to make the hacker community more diverse by running a hackathon that was accessible to people from underrepresented backgrounds and running workshops that introduce technical skills to a broader group of students.

Since then, he’s been obsessing over type on the web and thinking about how crowdsourcing techniques can be applied to creative tasks.

For more, keep up with Taylor at twp.io or on Twitter as @twpoulos.

Ironing Pixels – How to Achieve Perfect Type on the Web

Designers are an obsessive group of people, especially where type is concerned. 18th Century type designer John Baskerville famously ironed each sheet of paper and brewed his own ink to achieve darker, more uniform letters. This attention to detail produced books that noticeably advanced the state of the art.

However, as design has become more digital and less tactile, designers have become removed from the process of setting type. Few understand how the bits on their hard drive get turned into letterforms on the screen. As Mig Reyes pointed out, modern interfaces are 90 percent typography, and it is more important than ever to set type effectively. By learning more about the process of how type gets rendered on a screen, we’ll be equipped to sweat the details and build beautiful, typographically pristine websites.

In this talk, we’ll get into the nitty gritty of how type is rendered. We’ll cover:

  • What information goes into a font file, and how to tell if a font has been built to work effectively on a wide variety of screens
  • Web font loading and rendering, and how this process is different than what you might be familiar with in Sketch or Illustrator
  • Emerging standards—like variable fonts—that will change the way we set type on the web in the upcoming years

Location

Columbia College Film Row

We are big fans of our venue and sponsor: Columbia College in Chicago. Columbia is a great place to learn and upgrade your design skills and we’re excited to partner with them!

Columbia College

About Columbia College

Columbia College Chicago is an institution of higher education specializing in arts and media disciplines, with nearly 12,000 students pursuing degrees within 120 undergraduate and graduate programs.

Check out Columbia College.

Where to Park?

There are several easy-access parking garages available in the surrounding blocks.

Where to Stay?

Coming from out of town? We recommend staying at The Congress Plaza Hotel on Michigan Avenue in the heart of Chicago.

Chicago Sponsors Camps

  • Rosenfeld Media
  • Simplecast
  • Columbia College Chciago
  • MOMENT Design

Code of Conduct

All delegates, speakers, sponsors and volunteers at any Chicago Camps, LLC event are required to agree with the following code of conduct. Organizers will enforce this code throughout the event.

The Short Version
Full Version

Be respectful of other people; respectfully ask people to stop if you are bothered; and if you can’t resolve an issue contact the organizers. If you are being a problem, it will be apparent and you’ll be asked to leave.