The top 10 web design conference talks

10 cracking web design talks from the last year that will inspire, educate, and entertain.

It's that time again! Voting is now open in the 16th annual net awards and the leading lights of the web world are waiting to see whether they win one of the most sought-after prize in the web design world.

There are 20 categories this year, including Conference Talk of the Year. We list our shortlist below, based on nominations from the public, and we invite you to check them out and then vote for your favourites.

You can also check out the nominees in the other 19 categories on the net awards site. But hurry – voting closes on 13 July!

Philip Roberts: What the heck is the event loop anyway?

Phil Roberts

Phil Roberts: demystifying JavaScript

Finding good explanations of how JavaScript actually works isn’t all that easy, so in this talk Phil Roberts jumps into the breach. With some handy visualisations and fun hacks, he aims to give the audience an intuitive understanding of what happens when JavaScript runs.

Lena Reinhard: A talk about nothing

Lena Reinhard

Nothing is interesting

Lena Reinhard takes a look behind the curtains of reality and explore some of the underlying rules that shape our existence.

Petro Salema: Dream big. Think small.

Petro Salema

Solving small, hard problems

Petro Salema looks at how solving small and hard problems is what brings about capabilities, and it is capabilities—more so than vision—that are the link between our imagination and reality.

Jeremy Keith: Enhance!

Jeremy Keith

Change your thinking with progressive enhancement

Prepare to have your brain subtly rewired as we look beneath the surface-level implementation details of the web to reveal the semantic structure below. Whether you’re publishing content or building the latest hot app, the principle of progressive enhancement will change the way you think about your work.

Chris Coyier: SVG is for everybody

Chris Coyier

Learn SVG; it's good

While SVG isn’t exactly new, browser support is just getting to the point that we can use it without much worry. This makes now the perfect time to learn about SVG and how it can help you in everyday web design.

Darius Kazemi: Tiny subversions

Darius Kazemi

Luck plays a bigger part in success than many would like to admit

Darius Kazemi delivers a parodic send-up of every talk ever given by a successful creative person, then offers a few pieces of advice from his own experience as a lottery winner.

Cennydd Bowles: The ethical designer

Cennydd Bowles

Design is normative

The world's favourite digital spaces are largely in the hands of people like you and me. We have to oversee ourselves—and it's not going very well. It's time for our industry to become ethically aware, if we're to have a chance of doing the right thing.

Maciej Ceglowski: The internet with a human face

Maciej Ceglowski

Humanising the internet

The Internet as we've built it is getting boring and creepy. Everything is tracked forever by governments and advertisers. What would it mean to have a more human Internet? How can we keep the convenience and fun without sacrificing so much of our dignity?

Leonie Watson: Design like you give a damn

Leonie Watson

Practical accessibility advice

Léonie Watson passionately and creatively expresses practical advice on accessibility for web professionals.

Gavin Strange: Craft, graft and being daft

Gavin Strange

Gavin Strange on how enthusiasm and gusto can win the day

Gavin Strange on how he has bludgeoned his way through his career using the sledgehammer of excitement, smashing down the walls of knowledge with the brute force of bright colours and childlike enthusiasm.

The net awards

Celebrating "the best the internet has to offer", the long-running net awards offers most sought-after awards in the web design world. There are 20 categories this year, with nominees hand-picked by the net magazine team, based on over a thousand public nominations. Voting is now open so vote today!