Speaker Deck

CSS and the critical path - CSSConf May 2014

by Patrick Hamann

Published May 27, 2014 in Programming

For a website to feel instant, a perceptible response to user input must be provided within hundreds of milliseconds.

This perceived speed of your website relies heavily on the browser being able to paint to your user’s screen. For this they must construct a “render tree” which consists of the DOM and the often forgotten CSSOM. The critical path which the browser takes to gather this information is the only thing standing between your server and the user’s screen.

Using new research and real world examples, Patrick Hamann will cover a range of techniques – from the controversial to bleeding edge – the Guardian are using to make the CSS of their next generation website load as fast as possible, and ultimately taking it off the critical path. Breaking the news to the user within 1000ms.

During the talk you will discover why performance matters, what are the common performance bottlenecks in the browser from networking to painting and learn how to best optimise and monitor each stage of the critical path to create fast loading websites.