Blog post

Sonar at JSNation 2023 in Amsterdam

Gabriel Vivas photo

Gabriel Vivas

Product Manager

2 min read

  • JavaScript
  • TypeScript
  • Clean Code

The iconic JSNation conference was held in Amsterdam recently. Part of our JavaScript and TypeScript languages team went there to deliver talks and engage with the community.


Here's our recap!

Sonar is a Gold Sponsor

We set up our booth to engage with attendees, and had the chance to give back a bit to the community we cherish.


Sponsoring conferences is a way to cultivate the community, gather around cool topics, and share and learn from each other.

Captivating talks

All seats and hallways were taken for Wes Bos' talk about using AI tools for programming. Wes took us through an entertaining and revealing journey, from one experiment to another. 


We were hooked by the tips for better prompts, and how he managed to use consumer LLM (Large Language Models) chatbots to generate metadata for a huge archive of previously untranscribed podcast episodes. 


As from our own experiments, we saw that ChatGPT and the likes can generate –almost always, mostly correct– JSON data. If you ask nicely.


Another captivating talk was delivered by Jecelyn Yeen, who blew our minds with Chrome DevTools


It was super fun to see the crowd cheer loudly on the tiniest interaction with DevTools. Sometimes for features that were already there! An exceptionally engaging delivery made this talk top-notch.


We won’t list all of them here, but there were also great talks by Tobias Koppers of Webpack lore, Miško Hevery creator of Angular, Ryan Carniato creator of SolidJS, Matteo Collina whom you might know from Fastify and Node.js TSC member, and many more great speakers.

Talks by SonarSourcers

Our own Phil Nash, Developer Advocate, gave a funny and informative talk about passwordless authentication on the Web.


He managed to have people laugh at the complexities of security when confronted with user experience, while making an argument in favor of –sometimes underappreciated– Web platform features that can really help. We are convinced that passwords are horrible and that the future lies in passkeys.


With no less panache, Elena Vilchik, software engineer for the languages team at Sonar, illuminated us on what is easy and what is difficult in static analysis in JavaScript and TypeScript.


She overlaid an accessible model to understand different program analysis techniques, and walked us through some examples with ESLint and Sonar rules. You might be tempted to write some rules yourself!

Conversations we'll remember

Conferences aren't just about the speakers; meeting and chatting with other attendees is just as important. At the Sonar booth we even live-debugged a rogue Github Action taking too long. In a split second, we were reading together through CI/CD logs, identifying what was off and suggesting solutions.


Also, we were super happy to share with OpenSource maintainers that didn't know they could use SonarCloud and SonarLint for free. Special shout-out to folks from The Guild, who are maintaining their own GraphQL ESLint plugin.


Finally, we came back with some cool ideas for how to improve our JavaScript and TypeScript analysis. Like potentially detecting invalid HTML to avoid hindering Next.js hydration. Or adding special cases for `useRef` in a `useEffect` React hook, when there is no simple way to clean up side effects.

The venue

The conference was at the northern side of Amsterdam, we took the windy ferry from Centraal Station across the IJ river.


De Kromhouthal, is a huge hall, over 5000 m2, where more than 1000 attendants enjoyed interactive art installations, a fancy welcome breakfast, with barista coffee à-go-go. Oh, the coffee!


We enthusiastically participated in the pre-conference activities at the Oedipus brewery, where we had the opportunity to meet various people and obtain our badges.


Attending conferences like this provides valuable chances to connect with the community but also with open-source authors and maintainers.


Takeaways

We learned a lot from being there, and hopefully, we shared something back with the talks and conversations. So make sure to attend events yourself, where you can learn from insightful speakers and sponsors.


And keep an eye out for our presence at upcoming events, as we are always eager to engage with the developer community!



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