Beyond Tellerrand in Düsseldorf, 2022 edition

Beyond Tellerrand in Düsseldorf, 2022 edition

Welcome to the Capitol Theater! Inside this room, you will live an incredible experience during two days. You will learn about code, accessibility, personal empowerment, design, art and mostly life. You will be amazed, thrilled, mind-blown.

But first, we have to visit the stands…

Like always, you can discover the partners at their stand. Do you want to try the new Wacom tablet? Have some fun playing kicker with the Trivago team?

Or maybe you would like to relax, sitting in the huge punk flamingo and eating a vegan hot dog at AOE’s stand?

During this edition, Storyblok offered a mechanical keyboard to the best tetris player at the event. As usual, Awork offered the most awesome stickers and other nice goodies.

And for those who were looking for new colleagues or a new opportunity, the Job Board was still there:

The talks

Linda Liukas - Programming Playgrounds: how to see code with children’s eyes

Linda Liukas opened Monday’s serie of conferences with a wonderful subject: children’s eyes.
I guess what she said about algorithm may sum up her statement: if you ask grown-up what is an algorithm, they will not be sure, they may talk about facebook, social media, not be sure really… But if you ask a child what is an algorithm, they will answer with confidence that it’s a step by step solution to solving a problem.

She’s teaching children curiosity, fearlessness, wonder. It reminded me of my time being a webdev trainer. It’s so difficult to teach that to adults but she’s right: this is something we should not lose sight of. Never.

Learn by experimenting, trying, touching, feeling… The best way to learn.

Manuel Matuzović - Lost in Translation: code and accessibility

A frontend developer’s job is to look at a design, interpret it, and translate it to HTML and CSS. Unfortunately, information often gets lost in translation because we rely too much on visual aspects of a design, rather than its semantic meaning.

During his conference, he made several calls, several messages. Like:

Stephanie Eeckles - Scaling CSS Layout Beyond Pixels: A talk about CSS and responsiveness

“Responsive designs being created today have to serve more users on more devices and with more varied abilities and preferences than ever before. And size and spacing of elements can quite literally make or break your layout. In this new world, strict pixel values are so Web 2.0. Let’s review modern CSS techniques for building future-forward flexibility into our layouts and components”

Vasilis van Gemert - Exclusive Design: Accessibility and design and thinking outside the box

I had the opportunity to improve the screen reader of the TV interface I’m working on a few months ago. And watching Vasilis’s talk made me want to redo everything. Everything.

He’s totally right: we’re doing the strict minimum. We’re just following guidelines. But where is the fun, the feelings, the humanity? Why not using this feature in a different way? Why not playing with it, giving it a personality? Why not thinking outside the box?

Jude Pullen - More Than Answers – Designing for Questions and Provocations: Accessibility, open source, thinking outside the box

Jude showed us some of his incredible works. The open source 3D printed radio of the world (absolutly awesome) or a pollution detector with canari (you have to watch the talk to understand) but…

Oh gods, when I saw the interview of Kyle, a guy he worked with and for, I cried. Kyle said: “There has been times I’m having to pass my plate down to my friends to cut my food up which at 27… is really hard. I don’t want people to look at me and judge me before they’ve got a chance to know me. I don’t want people to give me the title as, “That”s the guy with one hand” because I’m not a guy with one hand. I’m Kyle.” Indeed, Kyle has one hand since birth. But what’s awesome, it’s that he wanted to become a hairdresser. And that’s when Jude arrived in his life and worked with him in order to create a special hand that will allow Kyle to cut hair. And even better: when Kyle went to hairdresser school, the other students didn’t feel pity for him, they were almost jalous. The system Kyle was using allows him to be more precise and more performant than a regular human hand.

Léonie Watson - Bag of Spanners: Code and accessibility

Oh la la ! Personaly, when I have the possibility to hear about accessibility directly from people who are concerned, I’m thrilled.

Lately, I only heard about accessibility from people with no impairement. It’s like listening men talking about what it feels like to be a woman. In theory, you know some stuff, but you can never tell from experience. So indeed, listening to Léonie was a privilege to me, young UX designer in Belgium who had to improve a screen reader for TV all by myself. Sure, I have myopia so without my glasses, I have an impairement but I already know my TV interface. I’m always wondering about people who don’t have glasses, who don’t have options and have to rely on screen readers.

Well, what Léonie told us during her talk is that with an understanding of how accessibility mechanics work in the browser, knowledge of how to provide or polyfill accessibility semantics, and a little bit of effort, we can provide a qualitative and accessible experience to everyone.

Aarron Walter - Returning to Your Maker Roots: Inspiring talk about life

These are the few lessons he learn from the pandemic:

  1. Less bullshit
  2. Remember what lights you up. And we noticed that kids are always focused on what’s light them up.
  3. More deep relationships. Less shallow acquaintances.
  4. Make space for discovery And those lessons led him to creating a podcast called “Re: Considering: A podcast about life and doing it better”, with a guy named Bob he became friend with but he, still now, never met IRL.

What about you? Where these lessons might lead you?

Sacha Judd - Everything Breaks at Scale: A little bit of sociology

Oh my god, this talk! It’s basically: everything you need to know and understand about conspiracy theorists… and how the pandemic has made things worse. Very interesting… I would like to write everything that blew my mind but seriously, you HAVE to watch this talk!

Noma Bar - Graphic Storytelling

I know I already posted a lot of pictures, like for Manuel’s talk but for Noma’s talk, I’d rather just invite you to watch the entire talk. A lot of amazing illustration, deep meaning, strong critics, and as always with Beyond Tellerrand’s speakers: a huge dose of humanity.

Illustration of Michael Jackson being a danger to children. Did you notice the kid on the illustration?

Tim Kadlec - The Big Picture: how to have a more performant code

Tim has dedicated his talk to improving performance when a website needs to display a large image. It sounds trivial but his demonstration was very technical and proved once again that code can be considered as a work of art if one masters its subject well.

Cabeza Patata - The Positives of Saying No: Inspiring talk about life

Cabeza Patata is the name of the agency launched by Katie and Abel. They have a very inspiring story to tell. Where it led them to say “no” when, usually, the rest of the people would have said “yes”… For example, when their agency became successfull, they could have moved in a bigger office, hired more people but instead, they just decided to live in a mobile home and to travel. What the fuck? Who do that?! Beh, them. And actually, they made a list of “lessons” or “rules” that led them to a new way of living when they feel alive and happy and free. It’s not a common way of living but it’s based on their will and needs. And it’s brilliant.

Geri Coady - If Not Now, When? Turning Your Passion Project into a Reality: Inspiring talk about life

Geri is a woman who met the japanese culture in an uncommon way (I won’t spoil, just watch the talk. It’s super cute). And she fell in love with Japan. She went over there and the travel changed her life. She decided to create illustrations about Japan. And eventually, she had customers. And she tried to get more customers. And of course her journey was not perfect, she failed, but she learned from her failures. She shared her lessons with us. She encouraged us to try to get a living from our passion. It may not apply to everyone but it made me think about Leeloo, who got inspired by another talk at Beyond Tellerrand and decided to quit her job and to become a writer. Talks at Beyond Tellerrand changes lives.

The people of Beyond Tellerrand

Andrew, the captioner

Yep, Andrew, as he did in November, was the real-time live captioner of this event. Amazing to see Marc and Andrew interact together in front of us. Andrew did an incredible work as, sometimes, as a foreigner, you don’t always get every words said so it helped us a lot. Yep, even us who are not deaf :)

Baldower, the official DJ

OMG, Tobi is so talented. Even at 10AM, he has this incredible communicative energy that set us on fire. This is also why I love to attend physically to this event: everything is made to make you confortable and happy and alive. Tobi did an amazing set… Even a few weeks after the event, I still have the song he sang and yelled before a talk and at the very end of the event… A song about community, a song about us.

Marc Thiele

I mentionned a lot a certain Marc like I assume you know who he is. And you should. Marc is the man who organizes, who sets up, who invites, who makes sure everything is perfect for everyone before, during and after the event. He’s like a guardian angel really. I could write for hours about him.

I’m always too shy to tell him directly, IRL, that I’m so gratefull for what is doing so at least, I’m telling him by mail, via social media or in my blog post. And Marc, trully, I am. It’s not just the talks and the speakers you schedule that changed my life (and the life of Leeloo also… I mentionned it in my previous blog post about the 2021 edition of Beyond Tellerrand), it’s litterally everything you do. So again, thank you very much for what you are doing.

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