Twitch Hosts Global Ember Meetup Conference

On Saturday, May 21st, Twitch hosted the Global Ember Meetup Conference (GEMConf) at our headquarters in San Francisco. Global Ember Meetup is an organization that hosts Ember meetups online for developers who do not have a regional meetup group near them. They have held many remote meetups, as well as a few that brought together local attendees with remote viewers and presenters. This was Global Ember Meetup’s first full-day event and their first time streaming via Twitch, and we were very excited to host them! We love being part of the Ember community, and we’ve been lucky to have the opportunity to give back by providing a venue for events like this.

There were over 100 people in attendance at GEMConf, with viewers tuning in to the stream on Twitch from over a dozen countries! It was great to see such a strong turnout from remote attendees, since the Twitch platform is all about bringing live content creation to the global audience. I was especially excited to see the mix of on-site and remote presenters for the talks; the event switched back and forth between the two throughout the day.

The whole day was filled with great talks that really resonated with what we value in Twitch Engineering. All of the talks were excellent, and two stood out to me as particularly relevant to us at Twitch:

Juan Pablo Buritica’s presentation on “Building Excellent Engineering Culture” highlighted something that we’re really passionate about. We work very hard to engender engineering practices that create a web product of the highest quality and availability, through best practices, infrastructure, tooling, and by surrounding ourselves with engineers who share our vision of that culture.

“Building Real-Time Applications w/ EmberJS & WebSockets” by Ben Limmer was also a great example of what we strive for. As a live content platform, it’s really important for us to leverage the best technology for creating a real-time experience for our users. In particular, our team has worked very hard to build a seamless chat experience enabled by our real-time distributed Go platform. You can read more about our platform architecture here.

Jordan Hawker speaking about Ember User Activity

I was lucky enough to have the opportunity to present my own talk at GEMConf, and I spoke about an addon I built called Ember User Activity (EUA). EUA provides an event service bus for tracking global user actions in your application, such as mousedown, keydown, scroll, and more. One of its key use-cases at Twitch is for our new Friends feature, where we use EUA to determine whether a user is currently active on the page. The user-idle service that implements this functionality is also provided by the addon and can be configured to your app’s needs! I’ve done a lot of work lately to improve the performance of EUA, utilizing requestAnimationFrame and adding event throttling. Check out the demo and play around with it, then let me know what you think!

I was also incredibly interested in the CSS layout performance talk by Chris Thoburn and Nathan Hammond’s lightning talk on accessibility. These are all topics that we strive to improve upon in our work at Twitch, and it was great to get community input and thought leadership from the speakers at GEMConf!

You can check out all the talks and their slides through the GEMConf Recap.

Overall, it was great to bring the Global Ember Meetup here to San Francisco and host the very first GEMConf! I can’t wait to see what more we can do with streaming meetups and conference talks on Twitch to enable remote participation in these great events. It’s really exciting to be able to build a product that can not only benefit the Ember community through our team’s upstream open-source contributions, but also to provide a platform that can enable the global spread of information and communication for our events as well!

If you’re in the Bay Area, be sure to join us for the next SF Ember meetup at our downtown San Francisco HQ on Tuesday, July 26th!

To find out about all of our upcoming Tech events and more, follow us on Twitter at @TwitchTech.