W3C DevRel - TPAC21 debrief

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A group of people facing a whiteboard to schedule their breakout session using post-its

W3C's 2021 annual conference (TPAC) concluded last month and we take the opportunity to debrief this successful virtual event through the lens of developer relations.

As input to the conference, several W3C groups produced videos and group updates about their work, which should help developers learning what new technologies are coming their way (incl. CSS container queries and new WebXR capabilities), or new ways W3C is trying to help developers adopt its technologies, through curated data for JS APIs & CSS or through lifting barriers to adoption as explored by the WebAuthn Adoption Community Group.

A highlight of TPAC is its unconference, a series of 1 hour sessions that any participant can propose and animate. As usual, these breakout sessions have played a role of gathering the community to create momentum and collective brainstorming. Among those, we wanted to highlight several initiatives particularly relevant to the developers and designers community:

  • the W3C developer council is a  Community Group that offers to act as a go-between between specification & proposal writers/groups and the wider Web developer community (Lola Odelola, co-chair, wrote this post - see also the group's repo).
  • the WebWeWant.fyi is a cross-browser and standards initiative that is focused on gathering developer feedback on missing capabilities in the Web platform.
  • the session on the State of CSS survey 2021 offered the opportunity to review some of the early qualitative results from this survey of the community on its needs from CSS
  • the Web Components Community Group presented its work on gathering and reporting gaps in the web components spec that either block adoption for more developers and frameworks, or cause pain points for existing developers.
  • Open Web Docs: the OWD team shared the results from their 2021 Impact & Transparency report, featuring meaningful improvements to the MDN Web Docs content repos.
  • the session on making WebViews work for the Web highlighted issues developers are likely to face when their content or application run inside a WebView component, and discussed what approaches the W3C community should take to both raise awareness on these challenges and figure out ways to mitigate them.

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In any case, to get updates on W3C's technical work, please follow @w3cdevs, the W3C place where we present the specifications in development and how to get involved, our learning resources, etc. to help move the Web forward!  We also release technical videos on our YouTube channel on a regular basis. Please check them out.

This post's authors are Marie-Claire Forgue and Dominique Hazaël-Massieux, from the W3C Developer Relations team.

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