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What You’ll Learn at GatsbyConf 2022

Jeff James
February 9th, 2022

We’re less than a month away from GatsbyConf 2022, which is the annual celebration of everything Gatsby! We’ve packed GatsbyConf with dozens of talks, workshops, and sessions to help you get the most out of the Gatsby framework and Gatsby Cloud. In this post we’ll take a look at the GatsbyConf 2022 agenda and highlight what you can learn from the conference this year, starting with some of the must-see sessions from Gatsby founders, product managers, and senior engineers. Many thanks to our GatsbyConf community speakers and Gatsby internal experts for writing up the session descriptions you see listed below.

Note: We’ll add scheduled times for sessions to this post once they become available, and we’ll also link from this post to the agenda page on the GatsbyConf 2022 website when it goes live.

Gatsby Sessions at GatsbyConf: Day One

How We Made Gatsby Build 10x Faster on Gatsby Cloud vs. Other Platforms – Kyle Mathews, CTO and Co-founder (@KyleMathews)

Gatsby Founder and CTO Kyle Mathews will present a technical deep dive on Gatsby’s real-time streaming architecture that’s at the heart of Gatsby Cloud’s blazing-fast publish times. He’ll also give a sneak peek of coming changes that’ll make publishes even faster.

The Latest, Greatest, and Beyond – Dustin Schau, VP of Engineering (@SchauDustin)

We at Gatsby are constantly trying to make Gatsby as delightful, optimized, and fast as possible. Dustin will recap what’s new and improved in the past several months – v3 and v4 of Gatsby, along with dramatically reduced build times, new rendering modes like DSG and SSR, and a whole lot more. He’ll share how these features and improvements enable Gatsby to scale to your next use case and the one after that, too. And… finally we’ll go beyond just what we’ve done lately, but a forward pointer to the future of Gatsby and Gatsby Cloud.

The Tech Lead’s Guide To A Great Gatsby Architecture – Sam Bhagwat, CSO and Co-founder (@calcsam

Gatsby sits in the middle of a number of systems: content, commerce, components, analytics. In this definitely-not-clickbait talk, Gatsby Co-founder and Chief Strategy Officer Sam Bhagwat will share two “weird tricks” savvy Gatsby teams use when assembling their architecture. The results: faster development, empowered content teams, and supercharged conversions.

Becoming an Open Source Champion with Gatsby – Lennart Jörgens, Senior Software Engineer (@lekoarts_de)

Learn how you can get into Open Source and what we’re changing at Gatsby to make it an awesome experience for you. Hear from an experienced Open Source maintainer how you can help your favorite projects, including Gatsby. No matter if you enjoy coding, writing docs, or hanging out in Discord.

How to Avoid the Most Common Performance Pitfalls – Ward Peeters, Principal Engineer & Tech Lead (@wardpeet)

Are you struggling with making your site performant by today’s standards? Everything was so fast during Proof of Concept, but now cookie-banners, third-party scripts, etc. are hurting your performance score. Great news — Ward is here to help! Join him for tips that can make your site fast just by shifting your approach and making a few minor changes.

Gatsby Cloud: The Platform for Deploying Your Gatsby Sites – Joel Smith, VP of Product (@jsumnersmith)

Over the last year, the Gatsby team has been busy building Gatsby Cloud to serve the needs of teams who are creating, shipping, and collaborating on Gatsby sites that power their businesses, communities, schools, and more. More than just a static hosting platform, Gatsby Cloud empowers developers and content owners to ship changes quickly to their highly performant, content-rich websites with ease, no matter the scale.

Gatsby Framework: Then, Now, and Coming Soon – Patrick Sullivan, Principal Product Manager (@pragmaticpat)

In 2021 we brought you Gatsby Image, open-sourced incremental builds, added new rendering strategies and expanded the parallelization of our architecture to mitigate the Jamtax. Now, what’s in store for Gatsby developers in 2022? This talk will highlight some of the advances Gatsby made to the framework in 2021, then showcase what’s new and what’s coming in 2022.

How Figma Helps Designers and Devs Customize Gatsby Starters – by Molly Misek, Product Design Manager (@mollymisek) and Alex Reed, Senior Front-End Engineer

Join Gatsby Design Manager Molly Misek and Senior Front-end Engineer Alex Reed to learn how we’ve set up Figma to help your team customize the design and content of your Gatsby starter site. In this session, you’ll get an overview of the new Gatsby starters, learn where to find our starter design files in the Figma Community, discover how to customize those Figma files to plan the design and content of your site, and understand how to implement those changes in the starter code. No prior Figma experience necessary!

How to Build a Kick-ass Preview Experience Editors Will Love – by Katherine Beck, Senior Software Engineer and Jack Sellwood, Senior Product Manager (@sellwood_jack)

As a developer, it can be difficult to support content editors and their unique workflows. Check out new features on Gatsby Cloud that take Preview to the next level. Even better, we’ll show you how to optimize your site for a great “Open Preview” experience.

 

Gatsby Community Sessions at GatsbyConf: Day One 

In addition to all of the great content from Gatsby executives and engineers, we’re delighted (and honored) to have dozens of Gatsby community experts on-hand to provide their own independent take on the Jamstack universe and all things Gatsby.

Keynote: Websites Are Good Now – by Chris Collier, Co-founder, CodePen (@chriscoyier

There are quite a few things in the world of web design and development that have gotten… easy. And because evolutions in browser technology and tooling have made many things easier — and better — now might be the right time to take a look at how you’re thinking about some of the building blocks of your website. Chris will kick off GatsbyConf 2022 by taking you on a comprehensive review of your approach to building, starting with browser level things as fundamental as layout, typography, and animation all the way to tooling level things like media handling, serverless concepts, and hosting. Hear how he approaches all of these topics and share your questions with him live.

Leveling Up In Jamstack with Gatsby & Storyblok – by  Arisa Fukuzaki, Developer Relations Engineer, Storyblok (@arisa_dev)

Discover the future of the Jamstack and join the revolution in visual editing with Storyblok & Gatsby. The powerful combination of Gatsby.js & Storyblok empowers your content creators & marketers to experiment with content without fear. You’ll learn how to develop a blazing fast project using the real-time visual editor & component-based approach in no time. Long live Jamstack!

Integrating Gatsby Into an Agile Workflow For Great Customer Experiences – by Matt Zimmer, CEO, Novuum (@zimpreneur

Did you know your project management process is as important to a positive project outcome as the technology stack you choose? Tune in to learn how Gatsby can create better workflow alignment within your agile organization all while delivering cutting edge performance. In this talk, you’ll hear how the Novvum team uses Gatsby Cloud Previews to share new features to their clients for feedback without the need to schedule live meetings or push updates to the site before they’re ready and how they drive rapid iteration and boost productivity in a fully-remote, async workflow.

Sustainably Maintaining the Gatsby Plugin Ecosystem – by Alex Moon, Solutions Architect, WP Engine (@moon_meister)

Plugins make the Gatsby-verse go round. But, for various reasons, some Gatsby plugins end up in the open-source equivalent of “the land of Forgotten Toys”. Enter the Gatsby User Collective. Learn about our goal of creating a sustainable community for plugin maintenance to help open-source maintainers get their lives back without their projects being forgotten.

Gatsby and Drupal at Scale: Higher Ed News Site – by Mark Shropshire, Senior Director of Development, Mediacurrent (@shrop)

In this session from digital agency Mediacurrent, get a front-row seat to the architectural decisions and technical integration of Drupal and Gatsby. Mark will share the team’s recent project experience building one of the world’s largest decoupled Gatsby/Drupal sites.

Scaling the Property Ladder with Gatsby 4 – by Ash Hitchcock, Frontend Development Director, Fresh Egg (@Ash_Hitchcock

Learn how the team at Fresh Egg are using Gatsby V4 to disrupt the property and real estate industry, setting a new standard for site performance and user experience. You’ll see how to scale large sites with tens of thousands of pages, separate concerns, and deliver a top-notch developer experience.

Creating the Touchless Experience For the Accessible World – by Kevin Gervais, Founder & CTO, Touchless Inc. (@touchlesscode

As organizations grow and scale, they have to deal with changing data models, causing strain in their ability to scale and develop. As a result, customers miss out on a great brand experience and those with disabilities are excluded from participating.

In this presentation, Kevin will share how creating a Gatsby-based theme using innovative middleware can help all businesses to create a more frictionless experience. The open-source Touchless EXO theme syncs data automatically from various sources, cleans data as it is entered, and more importantly enables every business to adhere to core vitals, accessibility and compliance standards so Gatsby applications can scale and cater to everyone without redoing code. After attending this talk, you’ll be able to download the Gatsby EXO theme, use it’s free APIs and start building scalable and flexible Gatsby applications immediately.

Building a Modern Frontend with a Legacy Backend – by Tom Hughes Co-founder, Attach Digital (@tomhughes_wd) and Jon Thornton, Co-founder, Attach Digital (@jonthornton_15)

When leading spa booking agency, SpaSeekers, reached out to Attach Digital looking to build a new site, they knew they wanted to keep their CMS. While this saved a lot of backend development work and data migration work, it did introduce new challenges into the build.

In their talk, Tom and Jon will describe their experience building SpaSeekers’s new site including how they leveraged the GraphQL API to connect a legacy CMS and Gatsby 4’s Deferred Static Generation (DSG) to reduce build times while ensuring frontend performance where it matters most.

Simplifying the Complex: Technical Writing – by Charlene Kuye, Founder, Dcoded Academy (@dcoded_academy)

Technical writing is a way of simplifying the complex and it’s about knowing how to adopt a user-centered approach to making complicated technical concepts easier to understand. Join Charlene for a rapid, quick-fire approach to key technical writing concepts. In 15 minutes, you’ll learn 15 actionable ways to improve your technical writing, including:

  • Common grammar problems in technical writing
  • How to bring clarity to complex subjects
  • Visual storytelling with illustrations
  • Planning and creating educational content
  • Creating useful, accurate, concise, clear, reusable, and well-commented sample code that demonstrates a range of complexity

The Modern Digital Pipeline: How the Jamstack Will Change the World – by Tim Benniks Principal Developer Advocate, Uniform (@timbenniks)

In an ever-expanding landscape of headless sources and other best-of-breed tools, developers are often the ones who have to connect them all in the front-end; there is no more concept of an origin server and all the magic happens on the CDN! In his talk, Tim will review why the Jamstack is an integral part of the modern digital pipeline.

Improve Your Lighthouse Score with Partytown and Gatsby – by Ersin Akinci, Developer Advocate, Builder.io (@ersin_akinci)

Learn how to use Partytown and Gatsby to achieve better Lighthouse scores without removing any of your site’s JavaScript (JS)! With Ersin Akinci as your guide, you’ll learn how Gatsby users like Atoms have used Partytown to improve their time to interactive and Contentful paint metrics with minimal modification to their site. Ersin will also show you how to integrate Partytown with your Gatsby site and additional tips and tricks for making your pages more responsive.

Supercharge WordPress-powered Gatsby Sites with Atlas Content Modeler – by Kellen Mace Developer Relations Manager, WP Engine (@kellenmace)

In the past, creating content models for your headless WordPress backend was a cumbersome process that involved cobbling together and configuring several WordPress plugins. Pairing Gatsby with WordPress gives you the best of two worlds: a blazing fast frontend application and an admin interface that content creators love.

In this talk, learn how the new Atlas Content Modeler plugin allows developers to easily create content models and expose them in the GraphQL schema, all with a single tool. Then, immediately start querying for and using your content model data in their Gatsby app.

 

Gatsby Sessions at GatsbyConf: Day Two

Gatsby Best of 2021 Agency Awards: The Winners! – by JD Peterson, Chief Marketing Officer (@JD_Peterson) and Laci Texter, Senior Brand Marketing Manager (@textercomm)

Join us as we reveal the big winners of the first annual Gatsby Best of 2021 Agency Awards!  We had some incredible entries from agencies around the globe and we are excited to shine the light on some of the amazing work they are doing with Gatsby.

Building a Secure Gatsby Website – by Mike Gaultieri, Staff Security Engineer, Gatsby (@mlgualtieri

From building super-fast static websites to dynamic web-applications that handle sensitive data, Gatsby can do it all! Along with Gatsby Software Engineer Rodney Matambo and Gatsby Staff Security Engineer, Mike Gualtieri, take a walk through a variety of security tips and technical examples that will help make your next Gatsby project a secure one.

Gatsby Community Sessions at GatsbyConf: Day Two 

Workshop: Jamstack Crash Course Using Gatsby & Storyblokby Facundo Giuliani, Developer Relations Engineer, Storyblok (@facundozurdo) and Arisa Fukuzaki Developer Relations Engineer, Storyblok (@arisa_dev)

You know about the Jamstack. You probably already used Gatsby, and recently you may hear a lot about the headless CMS’s. In this crash course, Arisa and Facundo will put all the pieces together, and show you why Storyblok in combination with Gatsby is the best combo for your next project. Stop by and try it yourself! You’ll learn about a blazing fast Jamstack approach that works for everyone, and how to integrate Gatsby with Storyblok. Graduates of this course will learn to look differently at the project from the whole start and will be able to build their first Jamstack website with Gatsby at the end.

Prerequisites:

  • Node.js installed, GitHub account
  • Brief familiarity with React.js & Gatsby and optionally Git

Workshop: How to Create Editor Experiences Your Team Will Love – by Knut Melvær, Head of Developer Relations, Sanity (@kmelve)

Content is a crucial part of what you build on the web. Jamstack brings a lot to the developer experience in terms of building content-driven sites, but how can we improve things for editors and content creators? What you’ll learn: In this workshop you’ll learn how to use Sanity.io to approach structured content modeling, and how to build, iterate, and configure your own CMS to unify data models with efficient and delightful editor experiences. It’s intended for web developers who want to deliver better content experiences for their content teams and clients.

Prerequisites:

  • JavaScript basics

Workshop: Developing a Marketer-Friendly Blueprint for Your Headless CMS Strategy – by Kiko Estrada, Software Engineering Manager, Webstacks (@kikoestr)

Learn how to develop a blueprint for the efficient migration, integration, implementation, and onboarding of headless technology from a content editor perspective in order to facilitate fast adoption and meet modern consumer expectations sooner.

You’ll cover how to integrate essential functionalities like:

  • An efficient content repository for easy access to reusable assets.
  • A “drag and drop” interface for quick and easy builds.
  • A “field validation” function and SEO-friendly “guardrails” to align editors on content formatting and optimization best practices.
  • A “preview” function to see how content will appear before publishing.
  • A revision history function to easily retrace and republish previous content versions.

Prerequisites:

  • A basic understanding of the benefits of headless technology.

What you should bring:

  • A student mentality!

Workshop: Create and Customize a Gatsby Blog Powered by WordPress – by Alexandra Spalato

Founder and Developer, Gatsby WP Themes (@alexadark)

In this session, Alexandra will guide you through the steps of setting up a beautiful Gatsby blog, powered by WordPress backend. She will use the free theme from Gatsby WP Themes and will also show how to make easy customization as well as building custom parts on top of this codebase. What you will learn:

  • Get up and running with Gatsby WP Themes
  • Use this codebase to build any Gatsby site powered by WordPress faster

Prerequisites:

  • Computer ready for Gatsby: node, GitHub, Gatsby installed
  • Subscribe to Gatsby WP Themes in order to get the free theme and download the starter files as well as the WordPress demo files
  • Install https://localwp.com/ and prepare a fresh WordPress install (Alexandra will also cover this in the Workshop!)

Workshop: Kissing Google Analytics and GTM Goodbye: A Story + Guide on Performance and Analytics – by Eric Dodds, Growth Marketing, Rudderstack (@ericdodds) 

At RudderStack, the marketing site and docs run on Gatsby, which is super fast, but GTM (Google Tag Manager) and Google Analytics were a constant performance headache, and worse, were producing poorer and poorer data with the rise of blockers. Their solution? Rip out GTM and GA completely!

Now, they run the Gatsby RudderStack plugin, which significantly improved performance (as well as data quality and flexibility in the tools they use). In benchmarking tests, removing GA, GTM and their A/B testing script resulted in 27% faster blocking, 40% decrease in unused JS, 39% improvement in JS execution, 39% improvement in load time. It also resulted in much better analytics data, which they view in multiple tools: Snowflake, Mixpanel and…yes, Google Analytics, which is data to server-side through RudderStack.

From a performance and analytics perspective, you could say they’re having their cake and eating it, too. If you’re ready for a serving of your performance improvement, join them live! You’ll learn how to replace Google Analytics and Google Tag Manager to increase site performance and how to drive better analytics with first party data. There are no Workshop prerequisites but if you’d like to follow along, Eric suggests you create a RudderStack account ahead of time.

Workshop: The Fast and Easy Way Into Jamstack with Gatsby and Kontent – by Richard Shackleton, UI Architect, NetConstruct (@Shackleberry112)

Gatsby seems interesting, but is that enough to successfully pitch it as a new tech-stack for your next project to your boss? In this workshop, you’ll create a new and shiny (CSS and imagery included) Gatsby site from scratch. You’ll fetch content from Kontent by Kentico using the fastest source plugin available, explore the GraphQL schema, and build a component-based landing page. All that in just 45 minutes!

What you will learn:

  • How to set up Gatsby project
  • How to connect it to Kontent How to use GraphQL
  • How to work with content in React components

Prerequisites: You should come to the Workshop with a VS Code or another editor installed and available.

Workshop: Building Advanced Multilingual Landing Pages with Gatsby and Kontent – by Ondrej Polesny, Developer Evangelist, Kontent by Kentico (@ondrabus

You’ve tried Gatsby and know how it works, but are you up-to-date with its new features? In this workshop, you’ll build a new Gatsby site that fetches content from Kontent by Kentico, implement advanced rich text resolution with multilingual content, set up pages for both static and deferred rendering, and enable visual live-site editing for non-technical users with SSR.

What you will learn:

  • How to set up Gatsby project
  • How to connect it to Kontent
  • How to handle advanced cases for rich text resolution
  • How to handle multilingual use-cases (e.g. missing content in another language)
  • How to configure static, DSG, and SSR
  • How to enable editors work on their content in visual context of the website

Prerequisites:

  • Have a VS Code or another editor installed and available
  • Ideally, sign up for a free trial of Kontent (not required, but advised)
  • What should you bring: A glass of your favorite drink to celebrate the end result!

Workshop: How to Supercharge Your Gatsby Site with Contentful – by David Fateh, Senior Software Engineer, Contentful

In this workshop you’ll learn about Contentful, content model, GraphQL and how to power your websites using the content platform. We’ll have a look at Contentful preview, Gatsby Cloud and the Contentful Gatsby App.

What you will learn:

  • How to define a content model for any site
  • How to set up and connect Contentful with Gatsby
  • How to add preview functionality to the Gatsby site

Prerequisites:

You’ll learn how to implement Contentful into the default Gatsby starter. To follow along, start a Contentful account and the running starter.

Workshop: Bridging the Divide Between Marketing & Development – by Nikan Shahidi, CEO, Webstacks & Jesse Schor, Head of Growth, Webstacks

In this Workshop, Nikan and Jesse will highlight process needs, tools, and best practices for efficiently aligning and scaling marketing and development teams to accelerate time to market. You will take deep dives into:

  • How marketers should provide appropriate context to requests to help engineers understand the business cases
  • Inviting engineers to the conversation early on when deciding what the marketing objectives are trying to achieve
  • Offering a product mindset new content features (e.g., building a resources hub when content marketing initiatives expand beyond blogs alone)

What you should bring:

  • A curious attitude!

 

And that’s not all!

In addition to all of the outstanding talks, workshops, keynotes, and sessions outlined above, we’ll also be awarding the winners of the Gatsby Best of 2021 Agency Awards.

Register Today! Join us for GatsbyConf on March 2nd and 3rd, 2022

 

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