iOSDevUK 2018: Conference Highlights

Originally Posted on XCBlog here

The UK’s best iOS Development Conference, a.k.a iOSDevUK, was held on 3rd to 6th September 2018 at Aberystwyth University in Wales. The 8th annual iteration of the conference was organised by Chris Price and Neil Taylor, professors from the university who have been the main force behind it from day one.

The purpose of iOSDevUK is to share knowledge about iOS Development and networking of iOS Developers all over the world. I was lucky enough to be part of this conference as a speaker and talk about DevOps for iOS Apps. In this short post, I will share my experience during this awesome conference.

iOSDevUK 8 - Tech Talk

This year iOSDevUK conference was live-streamed on Youtube first time ever. You can watch recorded videos on the official iOSDevUK Youtube channel. The conference has an official iOS app iOSDevUK 2018 that you can download from App Store. As there were many talks and workshops, we will cover a few of them in this post which interests me in particular.

There were approximately 30 main speakers for the conferences plus few lightning talk speakers. The key conference speakers were well-known people from iOS Development world like Steve Scott, Paul Hudson, Ellen Shapiro, Dave Verwer etc. Let’s cover a few interesting talks from iOSDevUK 8.

  • Marks of Great Developer by Steve Scott

This was an awesome talk explaining the characteristic of the great developer. Steve has more than 30 years of experience developing software and shares his views on developers practices and DOs and DON’Ts. It was amazing to hear about his experience. There were so many things, I have learned from this talk especially about being nice to people, have loosely held strong opinions etc.

  • Story About Tests at Scale By Ewa and Aleksander

This talk covered entire build, test and release process of Allegro shopping app. Ewa and Aleksander shared some cool tools like Mull for mutation testing, snapshot test case from Uber, and many more other tools for speeding up releases at Allegro tech. The key takeaway from this talk was to writing quality unit tests is important regardless of the number of tests.

  • Leveraging Common UX Patterns to build more apps Faster by Elliot Schrock

In this talk, Elliot shared some cool tips on creating modular reusable libraries that can be shared across multiple apps.

  • Embrace Machine Learning using Core ML and Vision

In this talk, Francisco showed the live demonstration of Create ML and Core ML technologies using sample iOS app with the trained model. I have already explored CreateML and wrote about this but it was interesting to see the models trained with 60K images.

  • Tracking Test Automation by Kateryna Gridina

Kateryna explained how Zalando uses internal tools for tracking. After the talk, just browsed Zalando’s open source project and I found some cool tools developed by them.

  • Server Side Swift with Vapor by Tim Condon

It’s possible that you might have heard this talk before as it’s almost in every iOS conference. I listened to that talk before and it’s always good to hear something new about Vapor. This time I have learned how to use JSON response from local files rather than JSON based models. It’s easily achievable by enabling the middleware in the Vapor that creates the public directory where we can store JSON files. Thanks to Tim for showing me this.

  • A Swift Testing Journey by Rob Whitaker

This talk by Rob covered Swift testing practices at CapitalOne. Rob has taken us through challenges of testing mixed iOS code (Swift + Objective-C) and covered unit testing, UI testing practices using XCTest and XCUITests. Capital One using NSURLProtocol for mocking specific parts and using launch Arguments for Xcode UI testing and Robot framework i.e BDD Style tests.

As usual, there were so many great talks lined up for the conference but I will cover only that list mentioned above.

DevOps for iOS App - My Talk

I was lucky enough to talk about DevOps for iOS apps at iOSDevUK conference. I have covered some of the things that we are doing at YOOX NET-A-PORTER GROUP on CI/CD practices. The main points of my talk

  • Challenges in iOS Development
  • Basics of DevOps and Applying to iOS
  • iOS CI/CD Practices at Yoox Net-A-Porter Group
  • Tips for speeding up Swift Build+Test+Release process (Xcode 10)
  • App Store Connect API

YouTube Video

You can watch my live-streamed talk here from 1:08:00 till 1:45:30

Slides

Slides of my talks can be found on SlideShare here

iOSDevUK iOS App Open Source

An official iOS app iOSDevUK 2018 for the conference has been developed by Niel Taylor and he has open sourced it. The app is completely written in Swift and available on GitHub here

It would be a good opportunity for other iOS developers to give him hands by adding some cool new features to the iOS app.

iOSDevUK - Steam Train and Other Fun

The iOSDevUK conference wasn’t just full of talks and workshops, there was so much fun involved in it. There were social drinks on Monday 3rd September at Wetherspoon Pub where I got a chance to talk to amazing people from an iOS community.

There were conference dinner and drinks on Tuesday 4th Sept from sponsors of the conference. On Wednesday, there was amazing steam train ride for all conference attendee to Devil’s Bridge. This was most amazing part of the conference and speakers dinner was awesome at Devil’s Bridge.

There was so much more fun at iOSDevUK that I have missed as I couldn’t attend talks on Thursday as I have to rush back to London.

Conclusion

In my opinion, iOSDevUK is the best conference I have ever attended. Great people, Great talks, Great Organisers and Great location. I would highly recommend iOSDevUK conference to all the iOS developers all over the world. Already missing Aberystwyth and friendly people over there. I can’t wait to join them next year. Thanks a lot, Chris Price and Neil Taylor for organising such an amazing conference.