Top Takeaways for Software Engineers from the 2018 DevTalks Conference by Alexandru Tudose, Software Engineer at Softvision

22 June 2018 devTalks
With every edition, we are glad to have together with us at DevTalks some of the most passionate IT professionals, eager to learn, get inspired and give back to the community from their personal experience. We are proud to see such a powerful IT community growing, and every time their thoughts and experience during the event is what drive us to go bigger.
Along the time, Softvision was one of the partners who joined us at our events and gave us their support. This time, Softvision was present at DevTalks Cluj and Bucharest through Ioana Stefania Chiorean who moderated the Web & Mobile track on May 16 and they also with their team attending the event in Bucharest.
We are happy to see they enjoyed DevTalks and moreover, that they share with the community the insights and experience during the event. Alexandru Stefan Tudose is part of the Web Community at Softvision and here are some takeaways for Software Engineers from DevTalks 2018 that he shared on their blog:

On May 16, 2018 DevTalks gathered over 1,200 developers and IT professionals and over 60 international and local speakers in Cluj, Romania. Over the course of one day, attendees and speakers discussed DevOps, Java, Product Technologies, Web, Mobile, Cloud, Big Data, Automotive, and more.

“Is there a ‘Smart’ Market and Should Cities be the Focus?” with Joseph Dignan

This was an impressive presentation that made the entire audience wonder about the potential toward truly developing the smart city. It also presented very good insights into the UK smart city culture, a good example being the channel island of Jersey, dominated by Fintech, big corporations, and entrepreneurs. Thanks to its high digitalization rate, the island has one of the highest GDP per capita in the EU. As for techniques, Joseph focused on 10 points; one of the main points was how community support could lead to better research and development. Furthermore, the speaker revealed that a proper infrastructure is the most essential toward accomplishing innovation and enrich the smart city experience.

“Creating AI Solutions for a Safer Future” with Silviu-Tudor Serban

This was a simple, concise and very passionate talk about an R2D2-like AI assistant and a driver drowsiness detection system. The speaker made these projects in his free time, leading me to think about what dedication can really mean, especially when it is toward making a better future.

“The Evolution of Asynchronous Javascript” with Alessandro Cinelli

This session was a nice recap and included insights into asynchrony as a mechanism and how it was handled in JavaScript, making the language able to grow substantially afterward. Async is hard for a human being, we can’t consciously do two actions at once and think about both of them at the same moment. This mechanism can be troubling even for experienced developers, and while the speaker talked about the underlying implementation of callbacks and generators, he also highlighted the complexity of asynchronous programming and how we should focus more on it.

“We Need to Talk About GraphQL” with Alex Moldovan

I enjoyed this cool, simple presentation and demo of what GraphQL is capable of. GraphQL is a must have for future tech into backend development, APIs, and Rapid Product Development. For some time now, the basic recipe for web services architecture was based on RESTful services. However, there are limitations to RESTful services that can make more complex use cases needlessly convoluted. As a result, in 2015, Facebook’s GraphQL was released. GraphQL offers an alternative paradigm and language that overcomes many of the perceived shortcomings of REST, and alongside Facebook counts Twitter, GitHub, and Pinterest among its users. REST services provide responses in a format determined by the server, and aim to isolate resources based on a logical model. This introduces two issues that GraphQL sets out to solve: 1. Since the response structure is determined by the server, a typical REST response will provide more information than is necessary for the client. Changes to this response structure may be breaking and require versioning the API. Where development responsibilities are separated, this also places a dependency on the team developing the API to respond to changing front-end requirements. 
2. It’s rare that meaningful functionality can be implemented by manipulating individual REST resources in isolation, resulting in APIs that require significant back and forth across the network to fulfill any practical.








This was my first time at DevTalks and it convinced me to come again next year. Besides the fact that I enjoyed all the presentations, I also met a lot of friends that work in other companies, and we had interesting debates and discussions on conference topics. All in all, it was a very pleasant experience which reminded me to never stop learning.