Learn about web performance from the experts. These videos provide a wealth of knowledge about how to make web pages faster.
Everyone knows what happens when a page loads slowly: the visitor leaves. That much is simple. But what is not always so obvious is what to do when you have addressed the “low-hanging fruit.” There are a number of variables at play with regard to page load time and at times it can be a bit tricky to understand how to measure and analyze each one. In these talks, you’ll find discussions that go beyond CSS sprites and domain sharding. Sure, those techniques (and other similar ones) are almost always helpful, but there is a deeper level of understanding required when trying to get page load speed down to a few seconds. I’ve not attempted to list every helpful video out there; there are many. This list includes the videos that I feel provide the most helpful review of topics. In each case, I’ve found the speaker to have not only a super-expert level of knowledge / experience, but an ability to translate their expertise into an enjoyable presentation.
Optimizing networking performance (and HTTP 2.0) – Crash course on web performance (Fluent 2013)
Ilya Grigorik covers a wide range of topics that define the technology of web performance. There is a healthy percentage of time spent on mobile, including some very deep concepts such as radio optimization and periodic transfers (beacons), and how they consume more battery life than you might expect. One area that is particularly interesting is the TCP/IP “slow start.” Here Ilya explains why the slow start exists (i.e. it’s actually a feature, not a bug), and how it affects performance.
Bandwidth, latency, and radio performance – Crash course on web performance (Fluent 2013)
If you think you understand what happens when you open a web page on your mobile device, think again. Ilya Grigorik goes into incredible detail when explaining what happens in the life of a mobile web request. A highlight is a very helpful explanation of the difference between bandwidth and latency. In addition, he discusses the psychological / business ramifications of delays of more than 300ms. This is a super in-depth talk and very much worth the time if you are interested in the more subtle areas of web performance.
Steve Souders: High Performance Mobile
Steve Souders on Web Performance: How Fast Are We Going Now?
Web Performance Testing at YouTube
Rick Viscomi’s high-level discussion or Real User Monitoring (RUM), and Synthetic Testing is fantastic. As a UX engineer at Google/YouTube, his expertise and insights on performance is extremely helpful. Rick explains Google’s approach to client-side instrumentation (CSI), and how their “measure / beacon / analyze” approach works. He also talks about how Google uses WebPageTest for synthetic testing.
Mobile Web Performance
Guy Podjarny, CTO of Web & Mobile at Akamai gives a great talk about mobile web performance. This video is nearly three years old, but still relevant. Guy’s perspective is particularly helpful because of his work in Akamai and the experience in that domain.