Analyzing How Developers Learn Online For Fun and Profit

Geek Lifestyle, Programming, Tools and Techniques
Location: Portland 256 Level: Novice
Average rating: ***..
(3.00, 5 ratings)

Developers used to struggle with decoding random stack traces, following new technology trends, fighting impenetrable installation problems, and learning non-spaghetti JavaScript. These problems were compounded for solo developers working without the benefit of an experienced team. The richness of today’s tools, from the newer StackOverflow, Codecademy, Twitter, and Proggit to the more mature and Safari Books Online, makes those days an (almost) forgotten memory. Understanding how that shift has made developers more effective is part of why Safari Books Online, ostensibly “just” a reference library, built a data warehouse to analyze its more than 10 years of usage data.

This session focuses on the sharing the stories and insights from that usage data, based on the behavior of hundreds of thousands of professional developers across a library of more than 20,000 books and videos. Specifically:

  • What trends and technologies are taking off (or plummeting) in 2012?
  • How are people switching among the vast range of tools most efficiently?
  • What impact has the iPad and the mobile web had on the boundaries of a typical developer’s workweek and when they choose to study and learn?
  • What technologies have persisted over the last 5, 10, or 20 years?
  • How has the consumption of online technical videos departed from that of books?
Photo of Keith Fahlgren

Keith Fahlgren

Safari Books Online

Keith Fahlgren is the Director of Engineering at Safari Books Online. Previously, he worked at Threepress Consulting, O’Reilly Media, and was the co-developer of Ibis Reader, an HTML5-based ebook reader.


For information on exhibition and sponsorship opportunities at the conference, contact Sharon Cordesse at (707) 827-7065 or

View a complete list of OSCON contacts