Fluttercon 2023 was a vibrant event with over 90 sessions held at the Berlin City Cubes. Co-organized with Droidcon, the conference brought together Flutter enthusiasts from around the world to share insights and experiences. Our colleagues and Flutter developers, Koen, Jordy, Luca and William attended the conference and give you some insights into what they learned.

Revealing Flutter's future: Multi-platform support and custom RenderObjects

On the first day, the opening keynote offered exciting glimpses into the Flutter team's recent work and their plans for future releases. We had the chance to witness impressive demonstrations of multi-window support for desktops and a custom Flutter embedder for terminals. This was only developed to showcase the possibilities, it will never be rolled out to production.

After the talk, we asked some questions to the flutter team about screenshot testing. This was the response: the issue of screenshot testing mismatches on different platforms was addressed, with a recommended solution of disabling shadows in widget tests and running tests on a single platform.

A fascinating talk by Romain Rastel explored the world of Custom RenderObjects, highlighting the control they provide over widget layout and painting. The performance benefits and ease of implementing dynamic layouts with Custom RenderObjects left a lasting impression.

Empowering seamless dart code updates

Day 2 started with an inspiring talk by Eric Seidel, the founder of Flutter, who shared insights on Flutter's journey since its inception. He also introduced his new company, which aims to provide missing tools and support to the Flutter ecosystem. One of the products already available is Shorebird, a codepush solution that allows seamless updates to Dart code on Android, with iOS support coming soon. Shorebird's philosophy of quick updates and its pricing model aimed at encouraging adoption were remarkable.

Exploring Dart backend development

On Day 3, we delved into the world of backend development with Dart. Serverpod stood out as a company striving to bring industry-standard tools to the masses while enabling logic sharing between backend and frontend. The comparison of Serverpod with Shelf and Aqueduct revealed its advanced features and easy setup. We felt encouraged to experiment with Dart in the backend to stay at the forefront of technology.

The conference concluded with a captivating talk about the custom_lint package by Remi Rousselet. Custom_lint rules were highlighted as a powerful way to enforce code quality, consistency, and best practices within Flutter projects. Lints are a set of rules that act as a pre-code review. It checks for basic issues such as syntax and stylistic errors, incorrect naming and unformatted code. The custom_lint package allows the developer to create their own lint rules to meet their project's or company’s specific requirements for automated code reviews and improvements.

In short: our key takeaways

  1. Flutter's Progress: The conference provided valuable insights into Flutter's progress since its last release. We learned about the exciting features planned for upcoming releases, including multi-window support for desktop platforms.

  2. Custom RenderObjects: A significant highlight was the talk by Romain Rastel on Custom RenderObjects. We discovered the power of creating our own RenderObjects, allowing them to have full control over widget layout and painting. Custom RenderObjects offer better performance and enable dynamic layouts.

  3. Shorebird Codepush Solution: Eric Seidel's talk introduced Shorebird, a codepush solution that facilitates seamless updates to Dart code on Android (with iOS support coming soon). Shorebird's philosophy of quick updates and flexible pricing models aimed to encourage adoption by developers.

  4. Serverpodfor Backend Development: Serverpod was showcased as a promising solution for backend development with Dart. We were encouraged to experiment with Dart in the backend to leverage its advanced features and ease of use.

  5. Custom Lint Rules: The custom_lint package was presented as a powerful tool for developers to create their own lint rules, enforcing code quality, consistency, and best practices within Flutter projects. Custom lint rules enable automated code reviews and improvements.

In conclusion, Fluttercon 2023 provided an enriching experience for attendees, with insights into the latest Flutter developments, tools, and best practices. The emphasis on experimentation, collaboration, and staying up to date with technology left us inspired and motivated to apply our newfound knowledge in our Flutter projects!