Meta Refresh 2013

The design and engineering of user interface on the web

Meta Refresh is a conference on the construction of the user experience on the web. The 2013 edition is about letting go. It’s about learning the skills necessary to build experiences which cannot possibly exist on any medium apart from the internet. It will showcase people who have a deep understanding of what the internet is, and what it can be; people who have built experiences and who can recount their experiences doing so.

The details

Meta Refresh 2013 is a single-track event over two days. All proposals will be evaluated by the program committee consisting of:

The program committee will not consider public voting when making selections, as the current form of voting has a weak correlation to relevance, but will instead look at the discussion each proposal generates. If there is a proposal you find notable, please leave a comment.

For this year’s event, we are seeking original presentations from practising designers and frontend engineers on why something should be done the way you say, rather than how. The conference stage is a place to convince the audience to your point of view. Howto guides go on the website.

As a single track event, you will have the full audience in the room with you, and we expect you to keep it engaged. Please submit examples of prior speaking experience, or a video introducing yourself and your topic, plus proof that you practice what you preach.

Attendance is free for selected speakers. HasGeek will cover your travel to and accommodation in Bangalore from anywhere in the world. As our budget is limited, we will prefer speakers from locations closer home, but will do our best to cover for anyone exceptional. If you are able to raise support for your trip, we will count that towards an event sponsorship.

There are no sponsored sessions at Meta Refresh. Your speaking opportunity is at the discretion of the program committee alone.

If your proposal is not accepted, you can buy a ticket at the same rate as was available on the day of your proposal.

Discounted tickets are available from


We will make the first round of confirmations by late December, a second round by mid-January, and will finalize the schedule in early February. More specific dates as they get closer. The event is on Feb 22-23.

Commitment to open source

HasGeek believes in open source as the foundation of the internet. Our aim is to strengthen these foundations for future generations. If your talk describes a codebase for developers to work with, we require that it is available under a permissive open source license, a license that does not impose itself on subsequent work.

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Shwetank Dixit


How to defend the Web

Submitted Jan 7, 2013

We Web Developers focus most of the time on the ‘Developers’ part and sometimes forget the ‘Web’ Part.

We’ll focus on the ‘Web’ part here and see how not to sink in the trap of taking shortcuts at the expense of the Web.


The Web is under attack, more now than ever. We’ll see how and why, as well as what happens when developers fail to defend the Web - Because sometimes the best way to learn is to see what NOT to do.

We’ll cover how developers (in small companies or huge corporations - doesn’t matter) neglect various portions of the population, thereby going against the very philosophy of the Web. We’ll have case studies of how even the biggest of companies have screwed up in the past, and what you can do to not repeat those mistakes. In each case study, we’ll also cover what the company should have done and how it could have ended up being beneficial for everyone involved.

We’ll cover why browser sniffing is evil (and the small exceptions when they might be okay), the correct ways to do feature detection, testing on various platforms (and how to make it as easy as possible), semantics and why they are usefull, and above all else - the philosophy of the Web... How and why you - Dear Front End Developer - should be defending it.

The future of the Web is really in your hands - Don’t let it down. Learn from others and make you and the Web stronger.

Speaker bio

I work in the Developer Relations Team at Opera Software evangelizing Open standards and best practices for the Web. Over the years I have talked to the biggest and smallest of web properties, and advised them on better ways to make their site better.

I work for a browser company, have interacted with many different people in the web industry, and have an up close and somewhat unique insight into this particular topic. How so? I’ll explain in the talk.

My articles and thoughts have been published in, .Net Magazine, PCQuest, Electronics4U, DeveloperFusion, the India-China Chronicle and more. I’m also part of the W3C Mobile Web for Social Development Group, and a few others.

Twitter: @shwetank


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Hosted by

Meta Refresh is an umbrella forum for conversations about different aspects of design and product including: UX and interaction design CMS, content management, publishing and content marketing Information architecture more