Laura Kalbag

Laura Kalbag – Host

Laura Kalbag is a cross-discipline designer/activist/advocate. She works at, a tiny social enterprise creating social technology that respects human rights. Laura specialises in ethical design, privacy, web development, and accessibility.

Vasilis van Gemert

Vasilis van Gemert – Host

Vasilis van Gemert is a lecturer at the Amsterdam University of Applied Sciences, where he teaches the next generation of digital product designers how to design things with the web as a material. Before he became a lecturer he worked as a principal front-end developer for large and small clients in The Netherlands. Every now and then he publishes articles on his own blog, or on other publications like Smashing Magazine, Web Designer Magazine and Net Magazine. Today he only creates websites for himself. This not only means that he can use any new feature he wants, it also means he is able to investigate things that might not seem very interesting. Most of the time this turns out to be true. But not always.

Portrait of Andy Clarke

Andy Clarke

Andy Clarke is one of the best known UK web designers because of his design work and contributions to the web design industry. He’s given more than sixty presentations at conferences all over the world. As well as numerous articles in web design publications, he’s written three books on website design and development including Transcending CSS and Hardboiled Web Design. Every few weeks, thousands of web professionals listen to him and his guests on the Unfinished Business podcast.


The Fine Art of Web Design (Opening Keynote)

For years we’ve been told that the websites we make shouldn’t make people think and that we should put user needs first. But what if none of that were true? In this talk, art director and designer Andy Clarke explores how art direction and creative expression make designs that are distinctive, individual and full of personality. (Can be attended in both rooms – we’ll have a live stream to PAPIERSAAL.)
Corey Quinn

Corey Quinn

Corey has a long and storied history as a consultant — long, in that every year he did it felt like three years, and storied, in that he’s got a few. Prior to his current role as Director of DevOps at FutureAdvisor, he spent most of the past few years at a Bay Area consulting firm, where he served as a systems architect, ad-hoc recruiter, advocate for driving transformational change throughout organizations, and (due to a misunderstanding around what a “standup meeting” really was) an improvisational comic. One of the early developers behind Saltstack, Corey also has a rich history of contributing to various open source projects. Corey’s hobbies include motorcycles, building custom keyboards, and drinking whiskey– it’s a shame that they all don’t work well together. He lives in San Francisco with his wife and two rodents of unusual size masquerading as dogs.


Terrible Ideas in Git

Adapted from his class "The Screaming Horrors of Git," Corey takes us on a magical tour through the (mis)use of Git to do things its creators never intended. In this humorously delivered exploration of one of the open source community's more ubiquitous tools, Corey demonstrates that a finely crafted wrench makes a barely acceptable hammer if you hold it wrong.
Portrait of Denise Jacobs

Denise Jacobs

Denise Jacobs is a Speaker + Author + Creativity Evangelist who keynotes conferences and consults with tech companies worldwide. As the Founder + CEO of The Creative Dose, she teaches game-changing techniques for busting through creative blocks, cultivating collaboration, and up-leveling creative productivity. She leads workshops and trainings that unlock creativity in individuals, teams, and workplaces. A web and tech industry veteran, Denise is the author of the upcoming book Banish Your Inner Critic (available January 2017), The CSS Detective Guide and co-author of the Smashing Book #3 1/3 and Interact with Web Standards. She is also the founder of Rawk The Web and the Head Instigator of The Creativity (R)Evolution.


Infinite Possibilities (Closing Keynote)

Navigating choices in our career paths can be challenging. What if we had guidelines to help us make decisions that expand options rather than restrict them? Learn how choosing creativity, shifting to a growth mindset, finding your flow, and being a maker puts you on the path of having infinite possibilities in your career. This creates a clear path to a future where you can not only be awesome, but also do meaningful work.
Estelle Weyl

Estelle Weyl

Estelle Weyl started her professional life in architecture and then managed teen health programs. In 2000, Estelle took the natural step of becoming a web standardista. She is the Open Web and Performance Evangelist for Instart Logic and has consulted for Kodak Gallery, SurveyMonkey, Samsung, Yahoo, Visa and Apple, among others. Estelle shares esoteric tidbits learned while programming and detailed grids of CSS3 and HTML5 browser support in her blog. She is a coauthor of Mobile HTML5, CSS3: The Definitive Guide, and HTML5 and CSS3 for the Real World While not coding, Estelle works in construction, de-hippifying her 1960s throwback abode.


Fast. Simple. Accessible

Semantic markup helps ensure accessibility while reducing the need for frameworks. When you write semantic HTML and leverage the power of CSS Selectors and the cascade, you can reduce your CSS and JS by up to 95% and obliterate your queue of accessibility bugs. While learning new frameworks is fun, and relying on libraries can seemingly reduce development time, allowing 3rd party scripts to generate your markup usually adds bloat while ignoring or even destroying accessibility. We’ll take a look at a case study, and how converting a single page app developed with 40+ dependencies (don’t ask!) and 100+ accessibility bugs in the queue to simple semantic HTML and CSS, with a few hundred lines of JavaScript reduced the site size by 90%, obliterated all the accessibility bugs and simplified site maintenance and new feature development. By developing with web standards, you can create accessible, performant web sites.
Eva-Lotta Lamm (Photo by Marc Thiele)

Eva-Lotta Lamm

Eva-Lotta is a User Experience Designer and Illustrator. She grew up in Germany, worked in Paris and London for a few years before packing up her backpack and go travelling the world for 15 months. She has over 12 years of experience working on digital products as an in-house designer for Google, Skype, and Yahoo! as well as freelancing and consulting for various agencies and her own clients. Besides her daytime mission of making the web a more understandable, usable and delightful place, she regularly takes sketchnotes at all sorts of talks and conferences and has self-published her notes in several books. Eva-Lotta also teaches sketching and is interested in exploring the area of Visual Improvisation – looking at the parallels between sketching and improvisation to explore how some of the principles from her regular theatre improvisation practice can be used to inspire visual work.



5 steps to change your note taking

Sketching is a great skill to have for designers, developers, product people and just about anybody who has to think through and communicate complex matters in an engaging and effective way. As most skills, sketching needs practice. So we'll practice a bit together. This is a hands-on session for everybody to sketch along, have fun and pick up some of Eva-Lotta's tips, tricks and favourite mistakes. If you think you are rubbish at sketching and want to get a fun kick-start into using pen and paper, this session will be just right for you. Get your pens ready!
Gion Kunz

Gion Kunz

Gion Kunz is a front-end developer totally in love with the web. Besides working on web projects for clients, he also loves to teach his students to become web developers. He’s the creator of the open-source charting library Chartist and wrote about his project in Smashing Magazine and in Net Magazine. He’s the author of Mastering Angular 2 Components and blogs about the web when ever he finds a free moment.


Componentize your Development!

Components have become a core asset of most modern frameworks like React or Angular. Even the web standard is evolving into a component based direction with the Web Components proposals. What’s behind this movement in user interface development? In this framework agnostic talk, Gion will outline some of the main principles behind component based UI development. Learn how to benefit from well designed components and start writing composable and highly re-usable web applications.
Harry Roberts

Harry Roberts

With a client list including Google, the United Nations, and Unilever, Harry is an award-winning Consultant Front-end Architect who helps organisations and teams across the globe to plan, build, and maintain product-scale UIs. He writes on the subjects of CSS architecture, performance, and scalability at; develops and maintains inuitcss; authored CSS Guidelines; and Tweets at @csswizardry.


Refactoring CSS Without Losing Your Mind

Working with CSS is tricky enough as it is; working with legacy CSS can be nightmarish. In this talk, we’ll look at how we decide what to refactor and when; how we can refactor code whilst still shipping features; how to avoid regressions when adding new CSS; how we can avoid the dreaded refactoring tunnels; running new and legacy code in tandem; and a bunch of other neat little tips and tricks.
Heydon Pickering

Heydon Pickering

Heydon is a utilitarian designer and inclusive design consultant from Norwich in the UK. He invented the “lobotomized owl selector”, does some subversive things with font subsetting and drew a picture of a ‘crocoduck’ for the W3C HTML5 specification. He works with The Paciello Group and Smashing Magazine, who published his acclaimed web accessibility book, “Apps For All”.


Test-driven HTML

HTML is the most foundational part of any web product. Without it, CSS and JavaScript simply cannot be employed. By adopting an "HTML first" design methodology, this talk will show you how front ends can be made more robust and accessible. Borrowing a test-driven philosophy from imperative code design, the talk will explore how you can prevent regressions in the HTML-based components of your "living" styleguide. The tests are written using CSS selectors and an a specially conceived CSS property for logging messages to your browser developer tools' CSS panel.
Portrait of Jaime Levy

Jaime Levy

Jaime Levy is an author, college professor and User Experience consultant based in Los Angeles, California. Her book “UX Strategy: How to Devise Innovative Digital Products that People Want” was just published by O’Reilly Media. Jaime heads a consultancy called JLR Interactive that caters to startups and enterprises, helping them transform their business concepts into innovative and scalable online solutions. She conducts workshops worldwide and also teaches a graduate level UX design and strategy course in the Viterbi engineering school at the University of Southern California. To learn more about Jaime Levy, look her up on Wikipedia and LinkedIn.


What the hell is UX Strategy?!

User experience (UX) strategy lies at the intersection of UX design and business strategy. This talk delves into this crucial practice, which relies on empirical, lightweight tactics for pushing cross-functional teams toward a unique digital solution that customers want. It will start with a primer covering topics such as competitor analysis, validated user research, value innovation, and why you must design a “killer” user experience. Then several UX strategy techniques will be explained that you can use for crafting consumer products that potentially make magic happen and destroy outdated mental models. You will learn: • Why a unique kick-ass user experience aligned with the right business model can define a “disruptive” product. • How UX strategy techniques help the entire team and the stakeholders reach a shared product vision for greater efficiency. • How by doing everything you can to validate your UX strategy, you reduce the risk of making products that nobody wants.
Portrait of Jina Bolton

Jina Bolton

Jina is Lead Designer on the Design Systems team at Salesforce UX, where she helps create systems for enterprise software. She also loves Sass; she designs and maintains the Sass website, she organizes the San Francisco Sass & Frontend Meet Up, The Mixin, and she curates Sass News. She coauthored two books, Fancy Form Design and The Art & Science of CSS. Previously, she has worked with rad companies including Apple, GitHub, Engine Yard, and Crush + Lovely.


Designing a Design System

Product Design for web and mobile is evolving at a fast pace. As the range of devices and platforms continues to expand, so do the various design considerations. Design systems help a design team build a framework that meets their needs by bringing together all of the critical design components - including style guides, pattern and UI libraries, CSS frameworks and other resources. In this session, Jina, a Lead Designer on the Design Systems team at Salesforce UX, will share: - Strategies for how to approach, design and build an effective design system - How to successfully maintain the system to ensure ongoing usefulness - Elements that design systems need to be sustainable that are critical for success
Katie Sylor-Miller

Katie Sylor-Miller

Katie Sylor-Miller is a Senior Software Engineer on the Design Systems team at Etsy, where she collaborates with designers to build systems and experiences that express Etsy’s brand in a creative and usable way. She is passionate about web standards, front-end architecture, style guides, accessibility, and facilitating communication between design & development.


Putting the T in Team

As the web development landscape rapidly changes, good communication and collaboration between multiple job functions is key to not just a project’s success, but to a successful career as a front end developer. In this talk, we’ll discuss why it is important to grow yourself into a “T-shaped” developer - someone with deep knowledge in front end development, who can collaborate across multiple other disciplines. You'll leave knowing how to incorporate essential empathy and communication skills into your daily work life, leveling up your career, and the career of those around you.

Mark Melnykowycz

Mark Melnykowycz is a scientist and artist, working primarily in the areas of wearable computing sensor development, connected devices, and virtual/augmented reality technologies. As a partner at idezo GmbH Mark focuses on combining technology and storytelling with interaction design and engineering. His primary focus is VR app and experience development, including 360 video production, VR animation integration, spatial audio, and VR-focused Unity development. He has mentored at various events, including the “Storytelling Science” : Oculus Rift Virtual Reality Hackathon and THE Port 2015 humanitarian hackathon. Outside of work Mark explores the Swiss Alps via trail running and mountain adventures.


UX Design of VR and Interactive Environments

The overall focus of the talk will be how to approach the UX design aspect of virtual reality apps and environments. Mark will first conceptually cover VR design, describe how content is produced, and what it means for UX design patterns and requirements. This will include 360 video, animation, world design in game engines such as Unity 3D, and hologram production with depth cameras. The goal with this talk is to prepare UX designers for the transition to VR app/experience design. Although the focus will be on VR, the knowledge will also be valuable for augmented reality and connected device app development.
Martin Naumann

Martin Splitt

Martin is open source contributor and web evangelist by heart from Zurich with a decade experience from the trenches of software engineering in multiple fields. He works as a software engineer from Zurich and works in front- and backend. He devotes his time to moving the web forward, fixing problems, building applications and systems and breaking things for fun & profit. Martin believes in the web platform and is working with bleeding edge technologies that will allow the web to prosper.


Life of a pixel or how I learned to love rendering performance

When the browser puts pixels on to screen, there's a lot of work happening behind the scenes. While it's well known that "GPU accelerated" is good for silky smooth animations and apps, it's surprisingly hard to figure out what that really entails and means. This talk is a tour of what goes into painting pixels onto the screen and what we can do to help the browser do it better. You will learn more about tiles, layers, compositing, painting and why the GPU is so great at pushing pixels around. You will also see what's the difference between using CSS, 2D Canvas and WebGL for image manipulation and how antialiasing, filtering and blending work.

Max Stoiber

Max is an Open Source Developer at Thinkmill, where he takes care of KeystoneJS and ElementalUI. He’s also the creator of react-boilerplate, the co-creator of Carte Blanche, he co-organises the React.js Vienna Meetup and is a PostCSS team member. He loves to travel, brews rad coffee, skis beautiful mountains and skates through the city.


The Future of CSS

The past years, preprocessors like Sass and LESS have dominated the CSS world. They extended CSS with useful features, and revolutionized everything back then. Now it's 2016, and the question is: Where do we go from here? What will change this year? We'll learn about the up and coming in CSS, which includes PostCSS, CSS modules and a lot more!
Portrait of Peter Gasston

Peter Gasston

Peter is a veteran web developer who now works as a technologist at rehabstudio on projects for clients including Google and Facebook, and in partnership with some of the world’s biggest creative agencies. He’s the author of The Book of CSS3 and The Modern Web, and has written for Net Magazine, Smashing Magazine and A List Apart. In his spare time he ‘relaxes’ by reading voraciously, supporting Arsenal, and going on day trips to castles.


Surveying the landscape: threats and opportunities for the web

From native apps to closed platforms to messenger bots, there are many threats to the influence and long-term health of the web. But perhaps its not time to give up on the browser just yet: the web could be sufficiently flexible to find new roles and new opportunities in the technology landscape of today and the near future.
Phil Nash

Phil Nash

Phil is a developer evangelist for Twilio serving developer communities in London and all over the world. He is a Ruby and JavaScript developer, blogger, speaker and occasionally a brewer. He can be found hanging out at meetups and conferences, playing with new technologies and APIs or writing open source code.


Thinking offline

Building a progressively enhanced, offline capable web application requires a different way of thinking. Not only is JavaScript optional, so is the network. Throughout this talk we’ll explore the life of a simple, though not trivial, web application that was built from the ground up as offline first. A base experience, static resources, dynamic pages, data and notifications will all play a part in this story of a new way of working with the web.

Tim Kadlec

Tim Kadlec is a developer advocate pushing for a faster web at Akamai. He is the author of Implementing Responsive Design: Building Sites for an Anywhere, Everywhere Web, and was a contributing author for Smashing Book


Once More, With Feeling

As an industry, we’re starting to recognize that what really matters for performance is how fast the experience feels. While this seems like a relatively minor revelation, in reality it requires a significant shift in the way we approach speed online: everything from the way we measure to the optimizations we use. Let’s look at how to reframe performance on the web, and what techniques and technologies are out there to help us create experiences that feel fast and frictionless.
Tim Perry

Tim Perry

Tim Perry is a tech lead and the open-source champion at Softwire, a bespoke software development company in London and Bristol. He’s a frequent technical speaker and a passionate believer in open-source, contributing to a huge range of projects across the JS, Java and C# ecosystems, and maintaining of a good few of his own too. He loves talking about security, automated testing, type safety, and good old-fashioned high-quality software development, but he’ll stop if you ask nicely.


Promises Are So Passé

Promises saved us from callback hell, but they've left us with extra ceremony and fractured function scopes. We can do better though, with generators & the new async/await syntax in ES2016. Let's see where async goes next, why it matters, and what you need to do to put it into practice today.
Portrait of Una Kravets

Una Kravets

Una Kravets is a UI Engineer on the Creative Engineering team at DigitalOcean. She’s a technical writer, having written for various online publications such as A List Apart, Smashing Magazine, and Sitepoint. Una also co-hosts the Toolsday podcast and started both the DC and Austin Sass Meetups. She’s a performance nerd, loves the open source community and listens to way too many audio books.


Practical Blend Modes

With the availability of SVG and CSS filters and blend modes, our browsers have become very powerful image rendering engines. From creating faux surrealist effects to 3D images, the artistic possibilities are endless. But how can we integrate filters and blend modes into web components? How can we use them in our every day user interfaces to improve performance and aid in design? This talk will cover just that, and show some practical examples of using filters and blend modes.
Vitaly Friedman

Vitaly Friedman

Vitaly Friedman loves beautiful content and does not give up easily. From Minsk in Belarus, he studied computer science and mathematics in Germany, discovered the passage a passion for typography, writing and design. After working as a freelance designer and developer for 6 years, he co-founded Smashing Magazine, a leading online magazine dedicated to design and web development. Vitaly is the author, co-author and editor of all Smashing books. He currently works as editor-in-chief of Smashing Magazine in the lovely city of Freiburg, Germany.


Dirty Little Tricks From The Dark Corners Of Front-End

Do you love the <object> tag, too? How do you feel about perfectly responsive typographic scale and vertical rhythm? Do you feel itchy when t comes to building responsive email layouts? Have you ever tried to work around complex tables, nasty carousels, endless country selectors and complex user interfaces? Well, let’s bring it on! In this talk, Vitaly Friedman, editor-in-chief of Smashing Magazine, will present dirty practical techniques and clever ideas developed in actual real-life projects, and use many examples to illustrate how we can solve problems smarter and faster. Please take the techniques with a grain of salt. Beware: you will not be able to unlearn what you’ll learn in the session!


Your sponsorship helps us to be affordable and accessible to the widest possible audience.

Still not sure? Check these irrefutable arguments in our sponsoring kit (PDF).

Our generous Sponsors


Unic logoHSR Hochschule für Technik Rapperswil logo


cyon logoAppway logo logoDeep Impact logo


AdNovum logoHostpoint logocubegrafik logoStation logoAmazee Labs logo3AP logoDreipol logoGold Interactive & logoNexum logoZühlke Engineering AG logo


KeyCDN logoZeix logoFrontify logoTestingtime logoGridonic logonative logo

Contributing partner

Zürich Tourismus logoStandortförderung logoeZürich logoFreshjobs logoBuffer logoMailchimp logoStickermule logo