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Getting started with Node.js

Presented by Simon Willison.  

@ The Werks 45 Church Rd, Hove, BN3 2BE Map of The Werks

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First off the mark...

Did you ever want to use your client-side skills to let rip on the server? Or are you a back-end developer who wants to add JavaScript to your server-side toolkit? Then this is the event for you.

This 90 minute workshop will provide a thorough developer's introduction to Node.js.

About Node.js

Node is an extremely high performance server-side programming framework based on Google Chrome's lightning fast V8 engine. It solves the same problems as server-side tools such as PHP, Django or Ruby on Rails, using JavaScript as the programming language and with a focus on non-blocking, highly concurrentt event-based I/O.

This makes it an excellent fit for problems requiring long-running connections - things like Comet, HTML5 WebSockets, large file uploads and combining results from unpredictable third party web services. As a result, Node makes an excellent complement to existing server-side technologies.

What you'll learn

The workshop is aimed at developers with some experience of both JavaScript and basic server-side programming in a language such as PHP, Python, Ruby or ASP.NET.

It will cover the fundamentals of development with Node, then use those basic principles to build scalable solutions for real-world problems: pushing data to the browser with comet, robustly combining web services at scale, and adding rate limiting and caching to existing web applications using a Node-powered reverse proxy.

Client-side developers should come away from the session with an understanding of how they can take their existing skills and apply them to server-side development, while server-side developers should gain a powerful new set of tools for solving problems that their current platform may not be able handle.

About Simon Willison

Simon works as a technical architect for The Guardian, where he has created such successful web projects as the “MPs' Expenses” crowdsourcing tool . Previously, he worked with Yahoo!'s Technology Development team and the award winning Kansas newspaper, Lawrence Journal-World, where he co-created the Django Python web framework.

Simon's interests include OpenID and decentralised systems, unobtrusive JavaScript, rapid application development and RESTful Web Service APIs. He maintains a popular web development blog at You can find him on Twitter at @simonw.

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