January 2016 – Lightning talks

A big thanks to everyone who came to our first meetup of the year. It was one of our busiest yet with 52 people through the door!

We’d like to thank our two speakers, Andy Wooton and Paul Boocock for speaking. Also to Trevor Adams for hosting our open discussion session.

This meetup saw the arrival of our new sponsor, TopCashback. Alongside iWeb, they will be helping with the ongoing costs of running the meetup.

The open discussion session was a big success again, thanks to Trevor Adams for hosting it. We are keen to run this on a regular basis moving forward.

Lightning talks

We’ve included a summary of the evenings talks below.

Fighting Intertwingularity

Presented by Andy Wootton

“EVERYTHING IS DEEPLY INTERTWINGLED. In an important sense there are no ‘subjects’ at all; there is only all knowledge, since the cross-connections among the myriad topics of this world simply cannot be divided up neatly… People keep pretending they can make things hierarchical, categorizable and sequential when they can’t”. OR CAN THEY?

Continuously delivering software to big brands

Presented by Paul Boocock

The ability to react and deliver quickly is a vital component to the way we work. Our clients run some of the biggest brands in the world, so how do we continuously deliver software whilst ensuring we keep our clients happy and our quality high? This talk will take you on a journey from a developers mind to our customer’s hands from writing the first test to deploying your changes to a live environment using a variety of techniques and tools.

This talk will take you on a journey from a developers mind to our customer’s hands from writing the first test to deploying your changes to a live environment using a variety of techniques and tools.

November 2015 – An evening of WordPress

Join us for an evening of WordPress on Thursday 19th November at Bean enCounter. We have free food and a drink waiting! We’ll be there from 6pm with talks starting at 7pm.

The nearest car park is North Walls and parking in Stafford is free after 6pm. The car park is open 24/7, so no worries about getting locked in!

Lightning talks

We’ve included a summary of the talks below and we’ll update the page with coverage (slides/videos) as it comes in.

WordPress: The only limit is yourself

Presented by Phil Wylie

Slides

WordPress is a flexible platform to build upon. In my talk we’ll take a flying look at some of the core WordPress concepts which have made it such a widely used platform.

WooCommerce

Presented by Laura Vaquero Blanco

An introduction to woocommerce. an ecommerce plugin for WordPress that powers over 30% of the eCommerce stores online. Hooking into WordPress core functionality. I will give you a brief overview of its history and features.

WordPress Multisite in the wild

Presented by Jonny Allbut

Ever wondered how or even why you might use WordPress Multisite? Jonny will talk us through a couple of his recent real-world WordPress Multisite projects that illustrate some of the cool things you can do with this little-used feature of WordPress.

Copywriting crash course: How to beat most professional copywriters

Presented by Karl Blanks

Karl is a scientist with a PhD from Cambridge University. He is the Chairman and co-founder of Conversion Rate Experts (CRE), an international consultancy that scientifically optimizes the profitability of web businesses. CRE’s client portfolio includes Apple, Amazon, Facebook, Google, Lloyds Banking Group, GQ, and Sony.

In this talk, Karl will reveal a highly effective copywriting formula that you can use to sell anything—your clients’ services, your company’s services or yourself (i.e. in your CV, not on eBay).

October 2015 – 1st Birthday Lightning Talks

We celebrated one year of Staffs Web Meetup on Thursday. There was cake, thanks to The Original CupCake Company and a sing-song towards the end!

The evening was hosted by Phil and followed our new format, two lightning talks followed by a longer discussion session.

Thanks to all those that have attended Staffs Web Meetup over the past year. The support has been incredible and we’re looking forward to delivering more great events over the coming year.

We’d like to thank our sponsors, Connect Group and iWeb for their continued support of Staffs Web Meetup!

Lightning talks

We’ve included a summary of the talks below and we’ll update the page with coverage (slides/videos) as it comes in.

Trials and Tribulations of teaching the web

Fiona Knight

I’ve been teaching web for 15 years now, and in that time things have changed a lot. Nowadays there are many different techniques, technologies and approaches to web development, and the challenge to teaching it is bigger than ever. I hope to provide some insight in our thinking and the problems of where we are, and possibilities on where we could go in the future, for your digestion and comment.

Test-Driven Development (TDD)

Ruth Mills

Including how we can tie this in with Behaviour Driven Development (BDD), and use TDD at as many layers of application development as possible – e.g. back-end (using a mocking framework, e.g. Mockito, for mocking database access etc), data binding from model to view (using Thymeleaf TDD), and in the front-end (using a JS unit testing framework, e.g. Mocha, for JS unit testing).

Discussion Session (Lean Coffee)

Trevor Adams

Our interpretation of Lean Coffee, a fast paced open discussion. Using sticky notes, during the break people will post up questions or talk topics. You will have the opportunity to vote for the sticky notes that you find the most interesting. We’ll then open the floor for a short discussion on each topic.

September 2015 – An evening of eCommerce

Thanks to all those that attended September’s eCommerce themed lightning talks. The evening was hosted by Natasha and we had three lightning talks covering a range of topics.

We’d like to thank our sponsors, Connect Group and iWeb for their continued support of Staffs Web Meetup!

Lightning talks

We’ve included a summary of the talks below and we’ll update the page with coverage (slides/videos) as it comes in.

Designing with clients

Dave Redfern

It’s a running joke in our industry how painful it is to work with clients. In this talk I’ll go through the processes we use to design and develop the front end of our eCommerce websites, specifically using Magento. I will discuss how working closely with clients creates better websites and happier clients.

The challenges of eCommerce hosting

Aaron Brady

eCommerce demands that sites be fast, available and secure, but also able to handle frequent changes, show fresh stock levels and handle as many paying transactions as possible. Unlike hosting a brochure site, it’s impossible to keep from storing and changing state. This talk will (really briefly!) show how iWeb structures our multi-server Magento deployments, but is applicable to any LAMP application and in principle to web hosting in general.

Preparing your store for international sales

Ian Cassidy

Preparing your store for international sales, talking through everything you need to consider to sell products around the world, from a Magento point of view.

Lean Coffee

Fast paced open discussion for all things eCommerce. Using sticky notes, during the break people will post up questions or talk topics. We’ll then open the floor to discuss those topics for 3 minutes before moving onto the next sticky.

August 2015 – Lightning Talks

Thanks to all those that attended August’s lightning talks. The evening was hosted by Phil and we had three lightning talks covering a range of topics. We will update this page with coverage as and when it comes in.

A big thank you to our sponsors, Connect Group and iWeb for supporting Staffs Web Meetup!

Lightning Talks

We’ve included a summary of the talks below and we’ll update the page with coverage (slides/videos) as it comes in.

Feature Testing and Deployment using Virtualisation

Presented by Trevor Adams

Describing the inception and evolution of internal product development and deployment using virtualisation and open source software.

An introduction to Elasticsearch

Presented by Ed Rowley

Elasticsearch is a modern powerful full-text search engine, but it is also really easy to get running and use. I will show how to get up and running with Elasticsearch, introducing the query language and explaining some of the high level concepts.

Port 80 All The Things Or At Least Most

Presented by Mike Elsmore

Micro service architecture is the in thing, and for good reason. With the growth of API’s, distributed infrastructure and the amount of things that are becoming app centric it totally makes sense. I’ll give an over view as to why it’s grown, why it’s great and some handy ways of glueing micro services together.