Web Performance Work

Empathy and Web Performance   presentation

Website performance issues can disproportionately affect communities of color, low-income households, folks with disabilities, rural and elderly populations. What can we do about it?

Studies from this talk:

Technical resources:

Interviewed for TypeThursday   interview

TypeThursday sat down with me to discuss how fonts affect a website’s performance.

Helping VIPs Care About Performance (24 Ways)   publication

“What metric(s) do your VIPs care about?” This question is often met with blank stares and raised eyebrows. But it’s also our biggest clue to what we need to do to help empower others to care about performance and work on it. Every organization and executive is different. This means that three major things vary: the primary metrics VIPs care about; the language they use about measuring success; and how change is enacted. By clueing in to these nuances within your organization, you can get a huge leg up on crafting a successful pitch about performance work.

An Event Apart Interview   interview

An Event Apart’s Eric Meyer caught up with me to talk about some of my favorite tips, tools, and techniques, and to find out what attendees at An Event Apart Seattle and An Event Apart Boston can look forward to.

Performance: Showing Versus Telling (A List Apart)   publication

Take your message to the next level. Help those around you feel the impact that performance has on your overall user experience. Showing is so much more compelling than telling; showcasing the real user experience is much more powerful than staring at numbers or bar charts. So how can we show performance? Use videos of your site loading, and wall monitors! This article shows you how.

DesignEDU Today   interview

Design Edu Today is the podcast series discussing topics concerning the state of interactive design education at institutions of higher learning.

Designing for Performance   presentation

This talk focused on performance from a designer’s and front end developer’s perspective, including the basics of page speed, optimizing HTML, CSS and images, and implementing responsive design with an eye on performance. I have given iterations of this talk at the various meetups, conferences, and companies.

Interviewed on The Path to Performance   interview

The Path to Performance is a podcast dedicated to fostering a culture around web performance in organizations. Katie and Tim talk to guests who have successfully integrated performance as part of their culture and the benefits they have seen. I talk about how our team at Etsy works to help performance stay top of mind throughout the product development process, and how we celebrate performance wins. Audio and Transcript

Interviewed for Netmag Exchange   interview

Net Magazine’s “Exchange” section includes practical advice from industry experts. I was invited to answer questions about performance in their April 2015 edition (pdf).

Interviewed on The Dirt   interview

This super-deep interview from the kind folks at Fresh Tilled Soil focused on many aspects of performance, from inlining CSS to its impact on experience design to the kind of bird that’s on the cover of Designing for Performance. Audio

Image Formats - The Nerdy Parts   presentation

I presented my favorite parts about image formats (what may be called “the nerdy parts”, as if all of performance isn’t incredibly nerdy) at Etsy to the front end development team. Slides

Designing for Performance: Can We Have it All?   presentation

Everyone wants sites that are responsive, beautiful, and fast. Do we need to make tradeoffs? And whose job is performance, anyway? In this event from February 26, 2015, A List Apart asked a panel of designers and developers from both in-house and agency teams to share their stories, strategies, and case studies. Watch the video or read the transcript here.

Product + Performance   presentation

Etsy’s Performance team gave this internal presentation to all the Product Managers at Etsy about how to incorporate performance into their product development cycles. Slides

Designing for Performance   publication

Designing for PerformanceI’m the author of Designing for Performance. This practical introduction to performance from a designer and front-end developer perspective has been featured in Netmag’s “Need list” and reviewed on CSS-Tricks. It covers:

  • The basics of page speed: requests and how browsers render content, and how it impacts your site, brand, and users
  • Optimizing images, HTML, CSS, and fonts for performance
  • Implementing responsive web design with an eye on performance
  • Tactics for weighing aesthetic choices and their performance impact
  • Tools for measuring and iterating on performance
  • Methods for shaping an organization’s performance culture

The book is available for purchase from O'Reilly in both ebook and print version. I'm donating all of the proceeds from the book to various charities focused on supporting underrepresented people in tech. You can also read the book online for free.

Interviewed on Hanselminutes   interview

I sat down with Scott Hanselman to explain how to design for page load time, including optimizations to images, fonts, markup, and more. How important is having a culture of performance and executive buy-in? Is a two-second page load time reasonable? How important is A/B testing? Audio

Performance Culture with Paul Lewis at Google I/O   presentation

With the rising tide of mobile traffic, we need to adapt our company cultures to prioritize the UX of the mobile user. What is the best way to excite your colleagues to meet your enthusiasm for delivering a quick and responsive experience on the mobile web? We explored how to curate a culture of performance internally. We can be deliberate about performance and mobile web, make smart use of performance monitoring tools, and cultivate a social atmosphere of collaboratively improving performance for our mobile users. Video

Mobile Performance: All Questions Answered   presentation

I participated in a panel with Lyza Gardner, Tammy Everts, and Guy Podjarny on mobile performance at Velocity Santa Clara. We covered emerging technology like SPDY, organizational change and the operational costs of mobile performance, page weight issues, and more.

Fluent, O'Reilly video   interview

Performance and… design? Ops and design don’t typically go hand in hand, but they’re more closely related than you may think. “There’s so much that we can do to start thinking about performance from the beginning… there’s a lot that you can actually do to make sure performance is paramount.”

Front End Performance series (O'Reilly Programming Blog)   publication

In this series of posts, I focus on the basics for optimizing the number and size of requests it takes to load your site quickly. As you build out sites, sometimes you’ll make choices that favor page load time, other times you’ll make choices that favor aesthetics. The key is to always be thinking in terms of user experience–including performance–and what will have the biggest impact for your site. The first two articles were also cross-posted on Forbes Technology (1, 2).

ShopTalkShow podcast   interview

I had a blast talking with Chris Coyier and Dave Rupert on their podcast about front end web design, development and UX. We chatted about performance, conferences and good skill sets front end devs should have to get hired.

Improving UX Through Front-End Performance (A List Apart)   publication

In this front-end performance 101, I walk through designing and coding for performance, focusing on optimizing requests and how to measure the results.