Now that the OSCON 07 site is up, I guess it’s official–for the second year in a row, I’ve been selected to give a talk at O’Reilly’s annual Open Source Convention (OSCON) in Portland, OR from July 23-27.

The title of my talk this year is “High-Performance JavaScript: Why Everything You’ve Been Taught is Wrong“. I’m basically going to share all the secrets we learned the hard way while building Plaxo Online 3.0 and trying to make it fast. It turns out that so many of the techniques and axioms used by the AJAX community have serious performance implications, so I’ll explain how we discovered and worked around them. I’ll also argue that a different design philosophy is necessary if performance is truly a goal–one in which every line of code you write has a cost that needs to be justified and in which you assume the platform (web browser) is fragile and brittle rather than infinite and omnipotent. In other words, you have to stop asking “what can I make the browser do?” and instead ask “what should I make it do?”.

In the last few years I’ve been going to a lot of conferences on behalf of Plaxo, and OSCON is easily my favorite of them all. (Thanks again Terry for turning me on to it!) I think it’s because there’s a higher signal-to-noise ratio of people attending who are really building and influencing things to those that are just attending to figure out what all the latest hype is about. It doesn’t feel corporate; it feels like a bunch of smart hackers trying to figure things out together and share what they’ve learned. It’s what many conferences aspire to but so rarely achieve these days. Plus Portland is a really fun town to spend a week in (last year I went to the rose garden, Japanese tea garden, a custom martini bar, and not one but two Dresden Dolls shows).

I can’t wait. See you there!