Optimizing Web Performance with AOL Pagetest

Jul ‘08 10

In this screencast, I walk through how to analyze your site using the reports generated by AOL Pagetest, and explain why and how to go about addressing your pressing performance issues. Come for the tool demo, and stay to learn about the anatomy of an HTTP request, the importance of CDN’s and keep-alives, and a handy Apache module to concatenate CSS and JavaScript. Leave me feedback so I can improve it, and enjoy!


Website Optimization: The Nighthawk Book

Jun ‘08 16

website optimization book coverI recently had the opportunity to co-author a chapter in Andy King’s new Website Optimization book. If you haven’t heard of Andy King, he wrote the first ever comprehensive book on web performance, a book I long considered required reading for my team members and any aspiring web developer.

Andy’s new book aims to be the ultimate companion to those interested in squeezing every bit of traffic out of their site. From the latest SEO/SEM advice and hot new tools and techniques in improving load times, to tips on improving conversation rates, this book promises to raise its predecessor’s high bar for information overload – in a good way.

Featured prominently in the performance section is AOL’s recently open-sourced tool, Pagetest. While admittedly not the sexiest of names, Pagetest has all the best features of commercially available tools like HTTPWatch, plus the added benefits of open source like access to the developer for feature requests, questions, etc.

In reflection on the writing experience – it’s a time intensive and attention rich sport. I have a new found respect for authors who have full time jobs (and families) and manage to write an entire book! I think I’ll start with blogging and see how that goes before committing all my thoughts to the printed word. Optimization is about going green, anyway.

Here’s the new Website Optimization book at Amazon, if you want to pre-order or add to your Wish List. Enjoy!


A Studio is Born

Mar ‘08 9

Welcome to ArtzStudio, the stomping grounds of Dave Artz. Over the years I have built out many prototypes and ideas in web design, and I finally realized I needed a place to share with the greater web audience. So, here’s to thee!

Please index me, experiment!

“It’s quite pungent. It’s a formidable scent, it stings the nostrils…in a good way. Brian, I’m gonna be honest with you, that smells like pure gasoline.” — Ron Burgundy