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First WSG London Event

I was very pleased to be able to attend the first Web Standards Group event in London that was very well organised by <a href="http://muffinresearch.co.uk/about/">Stuart</a> at Muffin Research. I discovered two excellent speeches and a community intent on not resting on their laurels.

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This was the first time I’ve attended a meetup and I didn’t really know what to expect.

Andy Budd spoke on Web Standards and offered reasons why he didn’t care about Web Standards. He compared Web Standards to the history of the screw and whilst I felt he over-laboured the analogy of the history of the screw a bit he did a good job of giving perspective on what standards are and why they exist. To say that the battle for standards has been won is a bold statement but I agreed with most if not all of what he said. It was interesting that he thought that we should turn our attention to other things. I’d agree with Usability and Accessibility being right up there for me. This doesn’t mean that we should forget about web standards - it is just a more mature approach to standards. We are through the first phase if you like.

Secondly was Christian Heilmann who gave an excellent and amusing speech on Maintainable Javascript. He gave practical examples of how to create and maintain javascript with examples that were relevant to many aspects of coding across all disciplines. Christian has just published []3an article on Think Vitamin with many elements from the speech he gave.

Both speeches seemed to say that Web Standards are now a given for developers. If you don’t use them then you won’t get work. The important thing now is to push things forward and look at other areas like maintainable code and user experience. I fully concur with this.

After the event we retired to the Printworks in Clerkenwell. Not the best pub in the world but it did give me the chance to meet Andy Hawkes from Cimex who writes some interesting stuff at Beyond Standards and Clive Walker from CVW Web Design who like me is a freelancer.

All in all a very interesting night!

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