Another year has passed and it’s time for the Velocity conference again. The conference is larger than last year with some amazing events and speakers lined up. For some silly reason I was choosen to give two presentations at Velocity 2011.
The first is an Ignite talk Tuesday night. The talk gives a score card for Web Performance from 2010 to 2011. Last year we analyzed the Alexa Top 1000 to understand what type of performance problems existed in websites who were the most capable and had the biggest incentive to address them. Our results were pretty surprising and we wrote a colossal 35 page report about it. For our Ignite presentation last year, we very quickly summarized the major themes we observed and our conclusions.
I say “very quickly” because Ignite sessions do not follow your traditional conference format. Each speaker has only 5 minutes to present a deck of 20 slides with each slide auto advancing every 15 seconds. This format really forces presenters to stay focused and express a few ideas or points very succinctly.
This year we analyzed the Alexa Top 1000 again, to see how things have changed. While our formal report will be coming soon this presentation provides a sneak peek at our findings.
The Scandinavian Theory of Compression
On Wednesday, I’ll be presenting a short 20 minute talk entitled Take it All Off! Lossy Image Optimizations. I feel that this is such an important topic that I guest blogged about it over on phpied.com today. Images are the dominate content on the web, but rarely do anything to optimize them beyond a few lossless techniques. You just cannot achieve significant file size reduce for an image without touching the graphics data. This is because graphics data composes 95% of an optimized image. So we need to look at losing some of it.
Now this lossy aspect has caused most people to immediately discount lossy image optimization as a realistic option. However this is short sighted. MP3s achieve enormous size reduction by using knowledge about how we hear and process sound to discard audio data without significant losses in perceived quality. Similarly, by intelligently approaching images and their content, we can apply different image formats and lossy compression schemes to achieve substantially smaller file sizes while maintaining image quality and user experience.
The presentation has a lot to cover in a short about of time. And because it’s a talk about images, the slides will include plenty of pictures of Lena in various states of compression.
If you are at Velocity and want to say send me a message on Twitter (@zoompf) or email me email@example.com. If you like our free scanning service, want to know more about Zoompf, or meet someone new who is way too passionate about web performance, drop me a line. I would love to talk with you.