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Oct 14, 2021 | 4 minute read

Jamstack Conference 2021: How it started, where it’s going

written by Emily Kathi


This year’s Jamstack conference featured a 90s theme, complete with an opening reminiscent of Full House and shows of the era: big hair, big cast, and all the cheese you can handle in two minutes. A big win for Netlify as it kept the conference moving along with humor and nostalgia. They even unearthed graphics and video from shows of the day and created new clips throughout as they introduced new sessions. Well done!

The web is winning  

Netlify’s CEO Matt Biilman kicked us off on a journey from when the web was considered dead some 20 years ago to where it’s winning today. As the shift continues from monolith to API-first, Biilman walked us through what drives innovation in development ops to create more robust and resilient user experiences. He highlighted the continuing saga between multi-page and single page apps, and how content is rendered through various hydration models.

Biilman was joined in the keynote by a handful of leaders in the community who provided thoughtful insight about the future of Jamstack, including creators from Svelte and Vite.

A shout out here to Phil Hawksworth at Netlify for his tea time footage; it kept us engaged and entertained. A+ content!

Breakout star: Laurie Voss

One of the more insightful sessions came from Netlify’s own data evangelist, Laurie Voss. He presented survey findings from approximately 7,500 Jamstack users, entitled “Jamstack is Eating the World”

A couple of interesting points within the findings: while full-time developers and engineers lead the charge in the community, 2021 saw a significant rise in student employment. Voss indicated this may be in part to the pandemic, as typically an education shift occurs in uncertain times, and a shift to Jamstack architecture taught as the foundational default.

Another key point: over 30% of responders reported a shift to remote work in 2021 even after pandemic conditions were lifted. How we work and collaborate has a new face, and how it affects the product (and the emotional state of its workers) is a case study in and of itself.

I highly suggest checking out Voss’ full presentation on YouTube when you have a chance. He goes into more detail on what developers are building, the tools they prefer, and what their priorities are for new projects. His presentation provides further evidence of where Jamstack is going and what the community looks like.

Additional Jamstack Conference 2021 highlights:

  • The Jamsnacks! What’s an event without snacks? Peppered throughout the conference were what’s new in apps in just two minutes, or the Jamsnack. Quick-hitting and informative, these were welcome breaks between longer form content and sessions.
  • The Lounge – an opportunity to chat amongst ourselves and get to know more about event sponsors (like Elastic Path!). Bonus:  casual conversation about beloved 90s shows. It was gold.
  • Lightning Launches – these ran about 10 minutes or so in the Innovation and Tools track and highlighted new products/features on the scene including a demo. Great job to Supabase, Astro, and Sanity for exceptional content and creativity on a time crunch!
  • Awards – kudos are key in all spaces, and the Jamstack community is no exception. The “Jammies” recognized excellence for company, project, and individual contributor levels in these categories:
    • Social Impact: A11Y project
    • Ecosystem Innovation: Astro
    • Community Creator: Salma Alam-Naylor
    • Project of the Year: Twilio Console

It’s a wrap on Jamstack 2021:

Again, I would highly recommend perusing the content on YouTube, especially since you can pick and choose where to spend time. You won’t have the perk of chatting in real time with fellow Jamstack community members and innovators, but you’ll get a feel for what the buzz is all about.


Jamstack & Elastic Path:

Jamstack architecture and the Elastic Path Commerce Cloud product play exceptionally well in the sand box. Together they provide control, speed, and trust in the digital commerce experience. You have the power to deliver a reliable, and truly differentiated solution based on your business needs today, and where you are going tomorrow.  Want to see it in action?

Jamstack is certainly key to us as we pursue the best in headless commerce solutions. We were thrilled to be a Jamstack Conference sponsor this year, and I personally enjoyed the deep dive into what’s new! Check out our resource library for more hot topics…