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Episode 47: Backends – SMS Browser, Streaming Audio & Game Engine

In the fourth episode of our 6-part series recorded at JSConf US 2019, the team interviews Alexandra Sunderland, Sara Fecadu, and Florian Rival around the theme of backend services.

Alexandra started out writing a chatbot but it grew into a phone app that can browse the web without a data plan. We talk about the unique server that drives this app and some of the amazing compression used in order to reduce page size by multiple orders of magnitude.

Our discussion with Sara dives further into her talk on audio streaming formats. From using packet loss detection on the server to smarter clients that move between different files as necessary, we look at how browsers arrived at the current streaming models. We compare Apple’s streaming API to the standardized API and how we think their relative popularity may change.

Finally, Florian’s talk covered the move from a native app to a front-end powered by React and a backend made possible by WebAssembly. While the actual talk covered a lot about the frontend, we are able to spend some extra time discussing the benefits of using web technologies in the frontend and whatever is the most appropriate language or languages to drive everything that’s not part of the user interface.

Neil Roberts on Twitter
Nick Nisi on Twitter
Sam Menza on Twitter
Anthony Ciccarello on Twitter
Alexandra Sunderland on Twitter
Sara Fecadu on Twitter
Florian Rival on Twitter

Show Notes
Below are links to the resources and topics mentioned during this episode.

Alexandra Sunderland

Sara Fecadu

Florian Rival

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