Performance Advent Calendar 2009

November 30th, 2009. Tagged: images, performance

2010 update:
Lo, the Web Performance Advent Calendar hath moved

I like 24ways.org's idea of a webdev advent calendar - publishing one article per day from Dec 1st to Dec 24. I thought it would be cool to have the same thing on web performance topics. Our young performance community would benefit from a year-end heartwarming bunch of articles, maybe some motivational, some wrapping up interesting ideas and techniques that popped up in the past year, this kind of stuff. Ideally it would be a co-effort by performance folks from around the world, but lacking the PM skills and time to organize it (and coming up with the idea kinda late) I'll try to start alone, hopefully next year it would be a community effort.

So this is now just a placeholder post, I'll update it with links to the articles as I write them, one per day is the plan, will see how it will work. So watch this space, you can follow me via the RSS feed or Twitter.

I have a preliminary idea of the articles I intend to write, but it's not at all final or complete, so if you want to see an article on something, or you want to write a guest post, please comment or get in touch in email.

  1. The performance roadmap
  2. Performance tools
  3. Required reading
  4. Psychology of performance
  5. Reducing the number of page components
  6. The pain points of having fewer components
  7. Data URIs, MHTML and IE7/Win7/Vista blues
  8. Collecting web data with a faster, free server by Christian Heilmann
  9. Duplicates and near-duplicates
  10. Caching vs. inlining
  11. Reducing the payload: compression, minification, 204s
  12. Big list of image optimization tools
  13. Give PNG a chance (video)
  14. Free-falling waterfalls
  15. JavaScript loading strategies by Ara Pehlivanian
  16. How To Measure Web Site Performance by Eric Goldsmith
  17. Rendering: repaint, reflow/relayout, restyle
  18. DOM access optimization
  19. The new game show: "Will it reflow?"
  20. Extreme JavaScript optimization by Ara Pehlivanian
  21. Progressive rendering via multiple flushes
  22. iPhone caching
  23. CSS performance: UI with fewer images
  24. The performance business pitch

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42 Responses

  1. It is a wonderful idea to write down a serials about web performance. To me, the most interested thing is about combining js, css files. I know that there are lots of tools dealing about static combine js, css files, but is it a way to combine those files dynamically and not hurt the browser cache?

  2. I’d started writing my performance series a little while ago but with all the travel that I’m doing, it’s getting really hard to find the time to fit things in.

  3. @Daniel, you can have a script on the server side to combine all the CSS/JS for you and, as long as it sends proper headers, it won’t hurt the cache.

    For an example, check Marco’s blog post on how he did this as part of a WordPress optimization plugin:
    http://www.i-marco.nl/weblog/archive/2007/05/27/on_a_quest_for_ultimate_websit
    code: http://www.i-marco.nl/wp_css_streamliner.phps

    @Philip, so should I gather you’re not volunteering to write a guest blog for my series :)

  4. I’d like to participate next year :) No time for writing right now …

  5. Very good idea! I read the first articles and it’s very interesting, as usual.

  6. Great idea! I’d be really interested in a review of the website accelerators…or semi-automators out there. Site speed issues for our sites are my responsibility but I don’t want to become a frontend engineer! Have allocated budget for this issue in light of Google changes next year and just want to get something that will optimize relatively hands free – too much to ask? Your view on whats out there would be very useful.

  7. These are some kick-ass articles on optimization. My colleagues and I look forward to reading your articles everyday. Keep up the good work.

  8. @jeff

    I am glad that I found this thread. The company that I work with (www.strangeloopnetworks.com) has developed an appliance that optimizes web application performance automatically, relieving you of the need to performance the tuning dance over and over. We have just finished up a few presentations at the Velocity Online conference and I understand they will be available online for viewing soon.

    Please check out our website for more information, or shoot me an email at marc.sherwood@strangeloopnetworks.com

  9. Ouch, some classless promotion above, wouldn’t go with a hardware solution personally – always ends up being a lot more expensive in my experience. Jeff, stick around this blog and you’ll learn some goos skills that you can apply.

    Nice concept Stoyan, always a good read.

  10. @Joe – I would not say that that was classless promotion. @jeff has asked for information on just what I posted. I think it makes sense for people to have a look at several options before locking themselves down to one type of solution.

    I would be interested to hear your thoughts on hardware solutions tend to be more expensive. The reason that I ask is that with an automated hardware solution you get to peak performance right away in place of the weeks, or longer, than it takes to optimize code manually. When you application is responsible for revenue the quicker you can make it faster the more revenue it can generate.

  11. “CSS performance: UI with fewer images” was just amazing, i’ve never used that features before!

  12. wow, at first I found the amazing post Data URIs, MHTML and IE7/Win7/Vista blues and got an idea to translate it to Chinese so that web engineers in China can read it more easily. then I went here and found more precious topics. :) . wonderful job!

  13. Dang! After 6+ years in the front end game I’m always stoked to find a gem of information on all this. Plus I’m late to this party too, I have catching up to do.

    Thanks for posting all this fantastic research.

  14. A compilation so many articles is a great reference and learning opportunity. This is a great post and I have already made it to your number 14 and intend to read them all. I just wanted to say thank you for a really great read. I intend to find more that you have written. Thanks!

  15. I hope this year would be a great year for the advent calendar 2010 on 24ways.org. I’m french and i come every year to see these posts ! What a great content !

  16. Performance CSS: with fewer images” was just amazing, i’ve never used that features before!

  17. Hy,

    i have some problems with ie6 and css, where can i find some help ?

  18. Very good idea! I read the first articles and it’s very interesting, as usual..

  19. [...] 24 This post is the last article in the 2009 performance advent calendar [...]

  20. [...] 11 This post is part of the 2009 performance advent calendar experiment. Stay tuned for the next [...]

  21. [...] by the work of Stoyan on his performance advent calendar I decided to start an application performance almanac. According to wikipedia an almanac is [...]

  22. [...] (@stoyanstefanov45) Coder of Smush.it and member of the performance team at Yahoo. Created his own advent calendar of performance tips46 this year, and runs Performance Planet, as mentioned [...]

  23. i really appreciate your work

  24. hmmm…
    nice post
    my english is bad, but it’ interesting

  25. [...] space.  We started this project at the beginning of the year inspired by Stoyan Stefanov’s   performance advent calendar of 2009. (There is also one for [...]

  26. [...] has a good blog post today as part of his Performance Advent series about required reading for web developers. He covered some great books. All three of the [...]

  27. I will try to follow you on twitter and this seem very good actually.

  28. [...] and half ago I did this Performance advent calendar experiment (since moved to a new home), writing an article a day for 24 days (sounds vaguely familiar?). [...]

  29. [...] Stefanov is known as one of the ‘sultans of speed’. In December 2009 he wrote a 24-day series on page speed which turned into a book offer.  He’s now writing that book in true open-sourced [...]

  30. [...] 21 This post is part of the 2009 performance advent calendar experiment. Stay tuned for the articles to [...]

  31. [...] 6 This is the sixth in the series of performance articles as part of my 2009 performance advent calendar experiment. Stay tuned for the next [...]

  32. [...] in December of 2009 I wanted to give an overview of the web performance optimization (WPO) discipline. I decided on a [...]

  33. A compilation so many articles is a great reference and learning opportunity. This is a great post and I have already made it to your number 14 and intend to read them all. I just wanted to say thank you for a really great read. I intend to find more that you have written. Thanks!

  34. [...] 17 This post is part of the 2009 performance advent calendar experiment. Stay tuned for the articles to [...]

  35. Nice idea this webdev advent calendar !

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  42. […] (@stoyanstefanov) Coder of Smush.it and member of the performance team at Yahoo. Created his own advent calendar of performance tips this year, and runs Performance Planet, as mentioned […]

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