Sparkboxers Catherine, Philip, and Lindsey will be at THAT Conference in Wisconsin Dells, WI, August 5–8. THAT Conference is a “summer camp for geeks” that hosts talks, workshops, and family-friendly social events. Professionals from diverse technical backgrounds will gather at The Kalahari Resort to share their expertise through multiple types of learning mediums.
During the “Pre-Conference” first day of THAT, Catherine and Philip will lead a workshop together on modern CSS. Later in the week, each Sparkboxer will lead a session: Philip will speak on Sass functions, maps, and mixins, Catherine will speak on effective Github pull requests, and Lindsey will speak on unit testing in Sass. Check out the details of their sessions below and make a note to attend!
Monday, Aug. 5, 1–5 p.m.
Presenters: Philip and Catherine
Things in the web move fast. In this workshop, Philip and Catherine will help get you up to speed on various approaches to writing CSS, their advantages, and how you can start using them. Whether you’re a regular CSS user ready to level up or a backend dev expanding your skill set, they’ll cover all you need to organize, manage, and write modern CSS.
They’ll cover many of the new tools, practices, and techniques prevalent in CSS today:
- Naming conventions (BEM, SMACSS, etc.)
- CSS processors (Sass, PostCSS, Autoprefixer, etc.)
- Build tools
- Mixins, functions, and plugins
- New CSS features and how to use them
- Tips and tricks to common CSS problems
Tuesday, Aug. 6, 2:30–3:30 p.m.
In her session, Catherine will speak on how to effectively review GitHub pull requests as a team. In an ideal world, reviewers would be able to sit down with another developer and walk through the process. But if the other developer works at another site or lives in another time zone, how can reviewers communicate efficiently with the developer and other project managers or designers who need to look at the work?
Catherine will cover the following tips and technologies for making the pull request process smoother:
- Writing clear issues/stories to build a good foundation
- Using tools for remotely reviewing work with coworkers
- Keeping design reviews from becoming blockers
- Adding testing instructions to your pull request description
- Leaving positive feedback so no one leaves grumpy
Thursday, Aug. 8, 1:00–2:00 p.m.
Sass is a staple of CSS development these days. Sass ushered in an era of change for CSS by providing variables and light programming called mixins. Many folks know of and use mixins, but maps and functions are equally powerful tools and are often overlooked or ignored. Combining the power of functions, maps, and mixins gives CSS developers a whole new level of automation and customization. Philip will walk through how to use these three features together to level up your Sass, build intentional and versatile systems, and let Sass handle the heavy lifting.
Some things he’ll cover:
- Taking the idea of variables to a new level by mixing functions and maps
- Generating a utility class system with minimal code
- Some of his other favorite and daily uses of this trio of tools
Thursday, Aug. 8, 2:30–3:30 p.m.
Remember that time someone on your team removed some questionable Sass, only to result in a broken UI? If this scenario sounds familiar, then Sass unit testing is for you! In this session, you’ll learn how unit testing is applied to Sass, how it can benefit your large project, and how to set it up in your own codebase. Lindsey will share her experience of unit testing an enterprise-level design system and how it has prevented unexpected UI changes.
Consider attending this session if:
- You work on large projects heavily relying on a consistent UI, such as a design system
- You’re passionate about code quality and testing
- You’ve worked with unit testing before and you’re curious to know if it could translate into a styling language
Come say hi to Sparkbox and learn from Philip, Catherine, and Lindsey at THAT Conference.