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A frontenders experience with with NDC Oslo 2024

I have attended and spoken at NDC Oslo for several years, and this year I'm writing a brief summary about my experience attending NDC Oslo 2024.


This summary could be interpreted as a too brief summary, but I am not that good to write down thoughts and memories in my head. Articles takes weeks and months, and in some occasions, years to write.

The conference

What is NDC? From their website:

The first NDC conference was held at the Radisson Scandinavia hotel in Oslo back in 2008. The conference had more than 800 attendees and included 1 day of Agile and 1 day of .NET. Since then the conference has come a long way. There are now NDC conferences in locations around the world, including Oslo, London, Sydney, Porto, and Copenhagen.

NDC will cover all topics interesting to developers. You can see most of our previous talks on our YouTube channel → NDC Conferences

NDC Oslo 2024

NDC Oslo consists of 2 workshop days followed by 3 days of conference sessions in Oslo Spektrum. NDC will be an in-person event with multiple tracks, an expo and after-parties. We expect more than 2700 people to attend.

This was my 3rd or 4th time at NDC Oslo, first one was in 2012, and I have even held a talk at NDC!

The venue

In the early years, NDC was mostly focused on backend with .NET/backend related talks, but over the years we saw that it directed the agenda to be a more cross disciplinary conference. This suited me, since I am a frontender. The last two times however, it was clear that they are turning their focus back to backend and .NET :/

The venue has in the last years always been at Oslo Spektrum, a huge multi use hall that was opened in 1990. It is located right smack in the middle of down town, and easily accessible.

A fun fact is that it is designed to be a tank/heavy vehicle repair depot in the eventuality of war in Norway. The rig in the ceiling is more than capable of lift several thousand tons, e.g. tanks, and originally the entrances was made so that those vehicles could easily enter.

One thing that I like with NDC (and perhaps other conferences do the same as well), is that they have an overflow area where you can use a headset to tune in to the different talks while they are held.

And of course, my company, Knowit, had the biggest stand at the venue:

The talks I attended

What struck me as peculiar, was the presence of 3 space related talks on the agenda. Are we shifting our focus to the stars?

The last one was more related to my area, and not directly related to the future of us as a space faring civilization.

What the Soviet Space Program Taught Me About Digital Product Development

I wanted to join all, but due to conflicting talks and me helping around the Knowit stand at the conference, I only managed to partake in one of them. And that was What the Soviet Space Program Taught Me About Digital Product Development by Dean Schuster.

He talked about how we can use the Soviet space program as an example on how to NOT build products. Albeit, during the Cold War, Soviet had almost all of the firsts. First animal in space, first man in space, first space walk, first satelite, first to another planet. However, the way they got there was by sacrificing a lot. They skipped testing and safety procedures etc just to be first.

This resultet in a very unstable foundation to build upon. While the Soviets were first in many things, they did not have the most important first, beeing the first to put a man on the moon.

The US did things a bit slower, but with the momentum they build up by going slow, ultimately led them to be the first to put a man on the mooon.

I think the key giveaway here is that you do not always have to be first, but like the old catchphrase, slow and steady wins the race, if you create and develop a product in a steady pace, you can eventually by the shear momentum, create something that can outlive you.

Advanced HTML for Performance & Accessibility

Another talk I attended, was Many Michaels talk about Advanced HTML for Performance & Accessibility.

I really hoped that I was going to learn something new and cool, but this was just another "use this attributes" talk for accessibility that I've seen and heard so many times before.

EventSource: The under appreciated sibling of WebSockets – a dive into real time communication

Benedicte Emilie Brækken had a really good talk about EventSource, an alternative to WebSockets. And she managed to raise my curiosity about it, and I would like to try it out on an occasion where I need real time communication.

Other talks

Even though the program is not a good fit for me, as a frontender, the NDC program commitee STILL manages to put talks that I wanted to go to in conflicting slots. So I just have to wait to see it until it is uploaded on YouTube:

As a big fan of minimized and simple web applications, I am looking forward to Amys talk. And Anders Norås always delivers fantastic talks. And I must admit, I am a space nerd, so would love to listen in on Richard Campbell.

There were other talks, of course, that peaked my interest. But due to a conflicting schedule with family, and that I also stepped in for some of my colleagues at out stand, I could not attend everything I wanted. But that is the life of a dad and a consultant ;)


Allthough NDC is primarily a .NET/backend conference, the program still lacks the full cross functionality theme that revolves around us. No backender ever interacts solely with backend code. I mean, they do try to have some frontend/ux/design and non-tech talks, but it is not quite cutting it to be honest.


To sum it up, in general, the NDC conference is a great conference, but it fails to hit the bullseye within my competence field. Yes, it is a great venu, yes the speakers are great. You get to mingle and interact with people from around the globe, and yes, great food and coffee, but I do not think I will partake in an NDC conference, unless I am speaking or helping with the company stand.

Will I recommend this conference to a backend developer? Yes. A frontend developer, no, unless there are talks that are specific to you.

About the author

Hi! My name is Alexander, and I am a creative frontender, specializing in UX, accessibility, universal design, frontend-architecture, node and design systems. I am passionate with open source projects and love to dabble with new emerging technologies related to frontend. With over 26 years of frontend experience, I have earned the right to be called a veteran. I am a lover of life, technologist at heart. If I am not coding, I am cooking and I love whisky and cigars. Oh, and coffee, I LOVE coffee!

If you want to know more about me, here is some links you might want to check out: GitHub, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, CodePen, Slides.com, npm,


I am also an avid speaker on several topics! Check out some of the things I speak about, and contact me if you are interested in having me at your next event!