Devcon is set to take place in 2022, along with a surprise addition. But before we unveil any updates on the upcoming event, we invite you to explore the newly refreshed Devcon archive. Introducing the New Devcon Archive: We recognize that Devcon’s impact goes beyond just the physical event. With this in mind, we have completely overhauled the Devcon archive. The changes we have made include an improved user experience, better content discoverability, a reduced reliance on YouTube, more decentralized content through IPFS, and community involvement in curation. Our aim is for the Devcon archive to continue being an unparalleled educational resource where you can learn about the past, present, and future of the ecosystem. Let’s dive into what’s new (and see if you can earn a POAP), or feel free to explore the site for yourself now.
A Hub of Curated Content: In our preliminary user research for the original archive implementation, we found that users struggled to navigate the hundreds of Devcon videos from each edition. Content discoverability and guidance were lacking, and talks were provided with little to no context or metadata. We received feedback that specific talks were crucial for understanding critical concepts, but users could only find them if they had initially encountered them on the event schedule or had attended the session. While live sessions are central to the Devcon experience, the abundance of parallel content makes it challenging for attendees to participate in all the sessions they desire. Consequently, many rely on video playbacks to catch up on content after the event. Additionally, curated content was repeatedly mentioned as a way to expose users to new ideas and fresh perspectives that would have otherwise been overlooked. One of the most consistently positive pieces of feedback we receive about the in-person Devcon experience is the serendipitous learning and ideas that attendees come across when engaging with content they hadn’t planned on attending. We wanted to capitalize on this and allow the community to contribute to the delight of these unexpected moments by suggesting playlists on niche areas of content expertise. If you’d like to help with this, please check out the Road to Devcon Quest for community-curated playlists.
Enhancing Content Discoverability: From a user’s perspective, our goal was to make the Devcon archive as easy as possible to navigate, filter, and access content based on specific interests and skill levels. The new archive has been rebuilt with a mobile-first implementation, enabling you to access your favorite Ethereum developer content across any device. With comprehensive metadata now available on the archive, you can search and filter videos using various inputs. Easily search content based on the speaker, talk descriptions, devcon tracks, keywords, level of expertise, or the Devcon event editions. You can also explore a wide range of curated and suggested playlists to discover interesting and engaging content. Note: If you are a speaker featured in the Devcon archive and wish to improve the content description or edit your speaker biography, please make a Pull Request on the archive GitHub page or contact us via email.
Embracing Decentralization: One of the primary objectives of the Devcon team this year is to leverage core web3 technologies that offer clear benefits to attendees and online participants. Due to concerns about the risk of deplatforming and increasing censorship, we wanted to ensure that all Devcon content is censorship-resistant, globally accessible, and persistent for interested individuals to engage with. To achieve this, we have fully integrated IPFS into the Devcon archive experience. IPFS is a distributed system for storing and retrieving various types of data. You can now find all past Devcon content hosted on IPFS and easily access it through the archive’s IPFS video player tab. We also hope to see users pin their favorite content on IPFS to make it more accessible and to signal their preference for the type of content they enjoy and wish to share with others. We extend our gratitude to the Textile team (Andrew and Carson) and Protocol Labs (Dietrich, Adin, and Molly) for their guidance on IPFS and Filecoin, as well as to the EF Devops team for managing and uploading the large amount of videos on IPFS.
Road to Devcon Quests: To commemorate the ongoing journey towards Devcon and encourage community involvement, we will be adding two additional quests related to the Devcon archive and the excellent content it holds. Pin the Archive: To enhance accessibility and decentralization, we hope to see more users pinning Devcon content using the archive. By pinning content on IPFS, users can ensure its persistence and prevent it from being deleted during the garbage collection process. Pinning content gives you control over disk space and data retention, allowing you to keep specific content on IPFS indefinitely. If you are one of the first 100 people to pin your favorite sessions to IPFS and reach out to us on our Road to Devcon Discord, you will receive a unique, limited-run POAP. Learn more about pinning and participating in the Road to Devcon Quest here.
Contributing to Curated Playlists: We believe that community participants should have an equal opportunity to curate content on the Devcon archive. We encourage all interested parties to submit curated playlists that provide insight into a core subject area or craft a historical narrative easily understood by newcomers or those seeking a deeper dive into a specific topic. Here are a few examples of curated playlists: “The Emergence of Smart Contract Languages” and “Execution Layer.” Craft your playlists and submit a Pull Request on the Devcon archive GitHub. If your playlist is chosen, you will receive a unique POAP as part of the Road to Devcon Quests. Learn more about participating in the Quest here and access the GitHub here.
What Lies Ahead: We see continuous opportunities for improvement in the archive, but we value your feedback on what would bring the most value. As Devcon approaches, we plan to integrate user accounts to allow you to create personalized playlists, favorite talks, and more. We also aim to closely integrate the Devcon live-streaming process with the archive to ensure immediate accessibility to content after the next Devcon, along with relevant supplementary information. If you have any additional ideas to enhance the Devcon experience or the archive, please check out the Devcon Improvement Proposal Process to learn how you can be an integral part of Devcon planning this year. We extend our appreciation to the Devcon and Web teams for their dedication to pushing this project forward.