Alan Kent, Developer Advocate (ECommerce) at Google
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Alan Kent, Developer Advocate (ECommerce) at Google


Oh today are joined by a very special
guest on Kent developer advocate at Google
previously Magento chief architect Allen how are you she was a chief with a deep
voice it does it does you do you got to say chief with a deep voice like that so
so how’s it going so yes oh by the way I first want to say on on behalf of the
entire Magento community we miss you greatly and and also a hearty obviously
it’s been a while now but a hearty congratulations on the move to Google
but we do miss you how’s how’s everything going with it with the
transition to being to developer advocating and at Google and apologize
for the blower in the background hopefully they’ll be good some neighbors
hopefully they’ll be finished in a minute or two
oh it’s not too bad okay cool the it’s annoying interesting so the first couple
of bucks is really sort of landing on the feet understanding how Google works
understanding that it’s just really one perfectly unified organization no it’s
not right hand always speaks to the left
hand yeah so many people there with so many projects going on that it’s just
impossible pretty world to coordinate and it just seems to be part of the
Google culture as well as to know they they encourage creativity they encourage
considering other ideas and so no they frequently do have a couple of
alternative strategies running in parallel just to see which one’s going
to work best some they are more leading-edge than others and that’s just
the way Google works really culture of the different countries companies is
that’s just a Google culture right right how big is Google now in terms of number
of employees and number of products and services it’s
I’m not you probably don’t have the numbers to rattle off off top of your
head but I was looking around and going to the Google homepage and brought up
the number of products and I think it’s got like 300 different icons or
something or other great giving a lot when yeah I didn’t realize you know you
bring up your Google menu item and oh yeah it’s got that and you got them
clicking the more apps and then oh another hundred pops up and then more
apps again through the icons and said which one of these do I think could have
some possible relevance to a commerce business right and it was a great
percent they all should be used but you know like Google Docs well you know
that’s a communication mechanism that could be useful and so you go through it
all and you sort of say in terms of being related to a business there’s a
lot in fact it probably was more like 75 percent but I don’t maybe would be wow
over-ambitious bravery stuff I don’t know if that’s a official but it’s
certainly in the many many tens of thousands of for brands path so right
when I turned up for the onboarding session know sort of like I wonder how
many people are going to be turning up to the onboarding session this week and
it was sort of like the queues out the door way out the back can barely see the
person at the front and this was happening every single week Wow like
just yeah a number of people there and the sheer number of people they’re
onboarding all the time is impressive yeah yeah I remember reading somewhere
about their onboarding process and how I can remember the details but it was just
really impressive the degree to which they fine-tuned their onboarding so that
they’re making sure you’re right fit you’re in the right department you can
move from department you know you’re getting evaluated
I can’t marry many of the details but I just remember being really impressed by
how finely tuned their onboarding process was they treat it seriously it
was almost like two weeks of classes you could attend
and no it was great I do all sorts of things right up front right old you what
you’re not meant to talk about right up front and then basically said look we
want to keep everybody informed but that relies on people being discreet right I
want to encourage an open environment but some things are sensitive so it’s so
like trust the people but yeah not too much yeah and so you work out of the
amount the amount of you office which has got to be an experience is it do you
alternate between massages and and and and different benefits of the office
there every other day what’s what’s that like so it’s interesting so no I haven’t
got any massages really to what people want to you you get you get points and
so you can build up points and get some initial points so yes I probably could
go off and get a massage but but you know I didn’t really come for the perks
I came because of all the things that Google is doing in the commerce space
and to me it felt from the outside that little bit too disconnected so my
personal passion is to try and help connect the dots a bit more help connect
the outside world you know they gave me an option of what sort of role and the
one they picked was developer relations because I actually enjoy getting out
there talking to people and as we start doing a lot more of that in the future I
just had to get my feet grounded at Google first but talk to the people out
in the real world bring that feedback back to the internal teams because some
of the teams know a lot about commerce that was actually surprised me a little
bit but then a lot of teams had no idea and so you know there was one team
saying oh we got this great example of how to collect credit card information
over the web and it’s sort of like PCI conformance oh wow and so it was just a
bad example they were using no just trying to be relevant to commerce but
they didn’t have the commerce debt so part of it is bringing different teams
up to speed and so I sort of like one of the people who’s part of the bridge
between the outside world and the inside world get feedback from the outside
world bring it inside to the actual teams get them did
changed directions if needed and my versa that take the messages from the
inside teams and help communicate it out to the outside teams right that’s really
cool how is it sort of it’s interesting because when you were at Magento as an
architect as the chief architect you know that’s obviously in an architect
level role and I remember always feeling like you were so engaged with the
community probably more so than any other architect I can think of that that
comes to mind and so I mean there’s probably some element to which you maybe
had that hat on even in an architect role but how does it feel to be in a in
a pure developer relations role beast versus you know more of an architect
role which it seems like throughout your career there’s been more the the role
that you’ve been in yeah well I think architecture is a lot about
communication like somebody’s like what’s the best definition of
architecture hey how about I ask you a question like in computer architecture
how would you define what architecture is how would I define what architecture
is I guess I would define it as sort of designing the way that a system would
work and you know balancing out with lots of different constraints you’re
making me really nervous if I wasn’t nervous enough Allen you’re making me
nervous here put me on the spot but I appreciate it that’s a pretty good
definition so my favorite definition I’ve come across is architecture is
design that matters the question is based on the context what matters and if
it doesn’t matter no you’re like oh does a sort algorithm matter which algorithm
you pick well if you’ve got ten items to sort know it doesn’t matter mmm you’ve
got potentially a million items there and it’s fundamental to the user
interface then it does matter and so to me architecture is trying to
work out what parts of the design matter versus what you just leave to other
people a lot of it is the higher up you go is really about coordination and
communication because you know the magenta team got lots of smart people
who frequently no matter about getting them
all the work together so there’s a unified message at the end of the day
that it all fits together well at the end of the day that’s frequently what
the higher level architecture is about but if you don’t really understand the
points so you don’t get in there and get your hands on which I often do behind
the scenes like I tinker I’m not very good at self-promotion sometimes so I
don’t really care about getting up in front of lots of people and sort of
saying oh yes I designed this now I’m quite happy talking to people behind the
scenes and I’d like seeing people grow so trying to talk to them make sure they
know what’s going on guiding them through the process letting them tackle
the problems to me is that’s how people grow I really enjoy that side of things
this is possibly my own personal mentality mm-hmm I love that that’s
that’s actually really interesting because it ties in very well to one of
the questions I got leading up to this from Brian Fowler which was exactly what
you’re saying like from looking at your blog posts it seems like you would kind
of explore concepts tinker with things throw ideas out there and then like did
you sort of take those it was just sort of like what you just said did you sort
of take those ideas pass them off to other architects and team leads to sort
of implement them and flush them out frequently yes and so frequently the
tinkering is just enough to work out is this worth pursuing a graph QL you know
somebody brought up should we be know one of the major things about Magento
two was getting all the api’s in it was it step towards better modularization
separation of UI from back-end you know for architecture it’s frequently going
to have multi-year plans and so you just step through a bit by bit you can’t do
it all at once so that was a big thing and so we got REST API we made sure the
code was independent of the actual protocol so we’ve got rest and soap and
you know it’s got a few different ways you can talk to it without any change to
the underlying business logic and so that was one of the goals and then along
comes know somebody else was a Eugene and sort of said hey what about graph QL
ok so it’s a matter of well how do you evaluate it well frequently you build a
little demo you put something in together and you work out how good the
tools are because it’s not only how good the technology
it’s how easy as it is to use and the thing that really impressed me about
graph QL is it ticked multiple boxes it ticked reducing a number of network hops
it’s actually got junk whites nice interactive developer tools with
autocomplete just in a web browser just so to help you build your queries up so
it’s the whole ecosystem around it that’s frequently that made that
particular technology it solved real problems and it was fairly nice to use
great but it was I going to build it all well no I built some proof of concepts
made sure it was possible worked out I’m just I don’t understood what some of the
problems are and then yeah another team then takes it on and actually delivers
its through to production because there is a difference between tinkering and
production code and I’m not gonna be around to support the thing I’m not
gonna be around to put all the polish on it otherwise I can’t go be off looking
at something else so a freer I do tinker to work out if
it’s any good or not and work out and if you touch it you get a much better idea
of hey is this thing really going to work or not yeah yeah I I really love
seeing that I think everybody loves seeing you tinker with things and and
and jump into things and hack on a project here and there it was really
cool to see I I thought I think that um myself I probably am maybe more in the
tinkerer category than the you know really hardcore production level code a
lot of times that the products and things that I built they work fine at a
certain scale which which is totally fine for me but I think I have a little
bit of that that tinker in me as well of course of course
yeah but it’s more a matter of where should you spend a time and you know if
you’re spending time building a production system you’re not thinking
about your business so it’s I think it’s more a matter of it’s not necessarily a
matter of skill it’s a matter of what should you be doing right has m2 sort of
gone in the direction that that you’ve expected you expected you based on the
the things that you were putting in place like you said those multi-year
plans you obviously came in at a time where you saw it
by the way I see it kind of almost righted the ship a little bit but how
have you seen the direction go since you’ve left yeah it was no do you know
he sold handedly right the ship no no there’s a whole team of people but there
was a eBay at the time sort of put a number of people in place to try and
write the ship because you know yeah it had been promised out live and it hadn’t
got shipped okay well let’s get that fixed and so then it was a matter of
trying to decide well how much do you do now versus how much do you do later and
it probably got blowing up bigger than it should have been which was know one
of their hesitancies but it was also hard to fix some of the things and not
do a good enough job and so it was a lot of anguish going through trying to work
out well how much do we fix versus get it out there yeah and how much you put
in place now versus iterate on later and that that’s just this is hard there’s no
question about it the front end stack was one that was already done before I
got there for example they’d already made done less choice and it’s not that
at the time was the wrong choice but it took so long to get him to out but it
might have been the wrong choice by the time I got live and then became the
question of when do you try and fix it versus because he can’t destabilize the
community too much no some people complaining that we’re changing too much
all right that’s a hard one you’ve got to revolve the platform and if
something’s not right sometimes you got to take the hard things and just turn
adjust them and so we put a Lunger quite a bit of the platform in place but then
there was a bit of pressure to get more features out and so we didn’t keep
pushing on the platform and as an architect I would have liked to keep
pushing on the platform a bit more yeah I think like simplifying the whole data
base model it’s fundamental to me to fix a number of the performance issues and
that’s what the graph QL to me is also a good thing it gives a layer of
abstraction to the lower levels which has got the potential to hook into the
database api’s and so forth which you can then feed into your indexing engine
which is one of the problems of people have performance with the product but
yeah not my problem anymore yes it’s it’s it’s really interesting I’ve
talked to a few people recently about PWA and graph QL and how it really kind
of changes the game from multiple perspectives not only what you mentioned
having great performance benefits and things like that but even from a
developer resource perspective like all of a sudden if this thing really moves
heavily into the PWA side of things with a very well well decoupled very loosely
coupled front-end and back-end all of a sudden now you can get all of these you
know front-end JavaScript engineers right out of college which is a very
sort of sexy and interesting technology all of a sudden you have access to that
whole pool of talent which you didn’t really necessarily you know a classic
Magento front-end developer is a little bit of a different beast and so it’s
yeah there was to be completely honest when PWA came up there was really the
two benefits one is hate pwace are cool they’re to know much more interactive
you’ve got a lot more capabilities blindingly fast if you’re out to code
right of course but they’ve just in their own right it’s a very interesting
technology but to me it was also as much about hey we can rejigged the front-end
stack and just pick a more mainline approach we’ve got the api’s in place
now because before the api’s in Magento one know that there were api’s but it
wasn’t there wasn’t a platform feature it was just like you get this extra
module and sometimes this extension would update the core functionality but
not update the API behavior or like you can’t have that it’s got to plug in it’s
got to be uniform everywhere yeah so getting the API is in was actually a
really useful precursor to get it but then that’s the next logical step I
think I’ve written about in a blog post before but I believe that there will be
more and more diversity in integrations and front ends you know you’ve got
things like no voice and Google assistant you’ve lots of different
interaction technologies and I don’t see how that’s going to slow down I think
it’s something gonna get faster yeah decoupling more and more no Magento
to put a lot of work into decoupling them there was too much business logic
in the P HTML template files in Magento one pulling that all out separated so
now okay we’ve got ap is that give you access to the full functionality and it
means you can cut the head off and so people were successfully doing and have
built quite a few headless projects but then this is the next logical step now
we’ve got to that stage well great now we can pick a modern front-end stack and
the tools there is was as much of a excitement to me around the PWA work as
the actual technology itself yeah I thought it was you you talked to you
mentioned briefly how there’s the the blog posts you had written on I did a
little bit of a deep dive trying to get ready for this on the different you know
technologies in sort of media that there are there’s vr there’s AR there’s mobile
web voice and I think your blog post the future on the future of commerce one of
the ideas you had in there thought was really interesting was this idea that
maybe the future isn’t so much as a merchant let stick every single box
let’s get our AR let’s get our VR let’s get our mobile app and our website but
more so really understanding what do you represent as a brand and what are the
technologies in the media that makes sense for you rui Kea okay maybe AR
makes a ton of sense invest heavily in that because that’s going to be a you
know an expensive thing to really get right most likely I thought that I
thought that idea you was really interesting yeah and I’m not the only
one saying it by the way but but yeah I truly believe that if you just do should
you have a chat thought well wrong question what’s your business problem
where are you not satisfying customer needs
where are you not getting cost efficiencies in your business and then
pick a technology that can best solve that problem so no furniture well yeah
it turns out to be a really great experience to drop furniture and try it
out in your home room that’s a real problem people have like
no I if they go off the one to get a new sofa well it looked good in the room
will it fit in the room well I can go to after with a Nike a store or whatever
and I look at the furniture there but I still don’t know how it’s gonna really
feel in my room and I sketch out a floor plan and roughly sort of know the right
measurements but so that was that’s addressing a real problem should they
have a chatbot well it can help with customer support because it can have
less people trying to man like phone doing dumb calls if they’re just trying
to work out where their order is up to or something or other so it really is a
matter of I I really believe that yeah should everybody be doing all of it well
no you don’t need all of it you need to work at your business problems your
brand has got to flow through those experience and if you’re all about
customer support then you should have a great customer support story if you’re
all about cheap prices and you just want people to find you quickly then you
should be picking the technology that helps you find quickly on search yeah
pick the technology that suits your business yeah but you can afford to do
them all right right well the exception of maybe like the you
know the billion dollar companies and yeah it’s it’s not like they have
infinite IT budgets it’s just it’s just not the case if they might have bigger
IT budgets but you know you’re not going to get the return out of all these
investments so right doing it if it’s not actually giving you value at the end
of the day you’re just creating more maintenance and more thing yeah yeah you
know it’s funny like in even in the context of like the Adobe acquisition in
the Microsoft acquisition a lot of times the sort of argument is that you know
hey we’re gonna have access to more funds that are gonna allow us to grow
faster and do more and stuff like that and of course to a certain extent that’s
true but I think I was listening to a podcast it might have been with the
founders of stripe recently where they were talking about how you know yeah
people are trying to figure out how to take money and turn it into innovation
that’s basically what the entire VC industry is but it’s complicated
sometimes you know money doesn’t exactly get converted into
innovation as efficiently as you’d like and sometimes there’s something about
that the people or the team or the organization building it that’s sort of
unique or magical and so I you know I don’t know I’m not always convinced by
that argument that you know now it can be true at times but I actually think
the greater value is synergies it’s sort of like if I’ve got some product contact
them now because we’re part of the same team we can talk more openly more deeply
we can do deeper integrations we can end up with a better experience you know
Adobe got some really impressive marketing tools and web no delivery no
it’s a digital experience tools and yeah rady of tools and all that’s really
great but they don’t have a fantastic commerce back-end and so if there’s you
know Magento is going to be able to get into markets that it couldn’t get into
before it’ll be taken more seriously as a result so it’s those sorts of
synergies that I see is the real value do I expect after paying a whole bucket
load of money for Magento they will then dump the same bucket load of money into
development right don’t really expect that I think don’t be and I don’t think
that’s really where the value is I think the real value that comes about is
getting products aligned better making them work better together getting things
into market so there wasn’t before dad I think is the real value yeah thoughts on
the Microsoft github acquisition I’ve thought about that one very much seems
to be acquisitions going on all around the place fully understand but I haven’t
really thought about I’m sure it’s just be because github was such a cash cow
that that’s why Microsoft with Microsoft over recent years know some people may
agree or disagree they used to be these violent no religious wars but you know I
was looking at some hardware recently like the the Microsoft’s surface to do
that great being screen and oh it’s a really nice machine yeah
yeah well done in the machine I don’t think that nice now I want to put my VR
kids into it or something yeah I I have a couple of friends that have moved from
from Mac to Windows and I’ve I’ve been somewhat seriously considering my
computers like five years old now and I’ve been wanting to get something new
for a couple of years but I can’t I can’t justify getting that touch bar
thing on the I just I’m not I don’t I don’t buy it that touch bar thing on the
new Mac so I’m not thrilled about the touch bar cuz I want that escape key
because you just need it for bi yeah all right
are you still vias VI your your main your main text editor of choice but it’s
just always there and so when you know you ssh onto a machine hey it’s an
editor it’s always there you know I I started before there was gooeys yeah
University I started on punch cards just to give you an idea of how ancient I am
or how backwards Australia is one of the other you know back then we’re just
getting you know x11 screens just as I was finishing up
University whoa that was cool yeah but so I think you just use what you used to
yeah I actually want to get like you to give us sort of like maybe a little bit
of an overview of your your whole career like you’ve been done so many
interesting things but if we have time we’ll get to that we got some questions
starting to come in here a question from Joe Hart how does the PWA versus a MP
play out which is I know sort of one of the big topics we wanted to to hit here
you know so I can give a bit of a Yammer on a little bit about amp first and then
I’ll talk about how they yeah oh yeah that’d be perfect yeah so a bit of
background about amp and you know you know Google’s caught a bit of flack
about it and yeah maybe it has no yes he’s my pitch or my way of putting
it so I’m spending a reason women a time an app at the moment going through and
working out the right ways to use it for e-commerce that’s one of the things I’m
actually spending a fair bit of time on right now so amp originally came out
that most people know from publishing industry and it was started off being
static pages and the whole goal was hey in Google search how do you make this
how do you get the experience even better and one of the ways of getting it
even better was okay well I can bring up the description they click on it and
okay we’ll send the user off to a site okay you can get that site to go faster
and faster and faster and then you get to a point of well it’s mainly Network
delay or you know how do I go any faster than that well the answer is how do you
get faster than that is okay let’s use something called machine learning or a I
actually don’t know how they do it but let’s predict which page the person is
going to click on let’s start fetching that page in advance so when they click
on it we’ve already got it and it can just go slam and split it up in the
screen right well and it’s a way of getting faster and faster web
experiences and it’s something you can do in a PWA yourself like on your own
commerce site predict what you think the most likely button they’re going to
click next is and preload some of those assets if you don’t oh well well if the
reason use is just reading a document just use your network a little bit so
you’ve got those options to do it also in your own pwace but how do you do it
for a Google search well that’s where it starts getting hard because you could
just download the files and not do the rendering but the rendering takes time –
and how do you make sure that the actual origin doesn’t see that somebody is
downloading the files because if you get the users web browser to download it it
actually starts to leak privacy information for example I go to a site
IKEA and I get their little tracking pixel and great and so they start
remembering something about me and then I do a search about chairs it could be
you know a week later of those search about chairs and if the web browser
while I’m searching Google pre-loaded that
IKEA page it’s gonna come from my web browser yeah Kier now knows that I did a
search for something and I on my search results was a chair what starts leaking
information I didn’t tell Google that I want to tell like here about it and so
this is where things like the app cache come in what they do is they anonymize
take a shit they help it to go faster they optimize the pages they do a number
of different things but the thing you can’t do without is the anonymous cash
in because IKEA does not know who looked at that chair and so the Google cash can
then do the preload or the Google search can do the preload from the Google the
app cache to say we will not tell the site who you are that you’re looking for
something and will preserve your privacy in the process and still get the page
you do it faster couldn’t they in theory just prefetch just do regular vanilla
prefetching without passing along your any and without leaking like just doing
a anonymized request IKEA to prefetch or does that prefetch happen client-side
because it prefetches client-side right quickly browser and so it’s your
browser’s would be doing the pre search so by doing the prefetch to the app
cache all right got a love-hate relationship and you know all that was
saying how can you do a good job now use current technologies don’t worry about
the future just try and work out what the problems are come up with a solution
and then the internal goal which they might not have communicated very well
with students say okay now we’ve worked out a way that works let’s generalize it
come up with no open standards around it and so forth and that’s what you already
started to hear about like things like web packaging the whole idea of saying
okay well if I can get content from the origin and I can cache it but signed by
the origins thing then a browser can bring it up even though it’s fetched out
of a cache and say this came from the origin because it’s signed by the origin
and so these are the new no standards that are now evolving and no app has
been invaluable to solving some of those problems like it’s got real-world
experience too what are the real problems what are not
the problems while delivering a solution today that works yeah is it gonna take
over the web no no it’s Google trying to speed up the
web learning along the way yeah it’s working pretty well well we’ll try and
learn and do better and so forth but bit longer to plan there are quite a
few things and a lot of lessons been learned about what’s worked and what’s
not worked to speed up a page now make sure your JavaScript doesn’t block the
render pipeline and hey inline a small amount of CSS overall that works better
yeah defer loading of images behind all these sorts of techniques doing projects
like app helps Google work out what works well and what doesn’t work well
and then it can go off and talk to all the browser’s and you know if they agree
and then great know as you get the new technologies out
you don’t have to use amp anymore app will still be supported there’s no
reason to get rid of it actually it’s got a number of other benefits as well
it’s sort of new simplifies the management of your site you can actually
just build up a creaky site with sliders and carousels without running a single
line of JavaScript now you don’t have to learn JavaScript anymore just use this
component library and it’ll be a fast responsive no good site yeah possible
build a better site than out yeah if you targeting one particular thing
and you’ve got fantastic JavaScript developers yes you can build something
faster than a vamp is trying to be generic store but if you’re just trying
to knock something out quickly and will stop you will discourage you from doing
things that will slow down the page and so it’s sort of like that’s to me the
sorts of value proposition about our and so yeah I know that as a user like I
love it well you know if I’ll and if I’m
searching for something and I land on a page that’s that’s that’s amp it’s just
the I’m looking like you were talking about you know out started with
publishing and that sort of one of the key use cases I can’t stand you know all
you know media web sites right they’ve got so many other so heavy there’s so I
love I love getting that quick lean page that comes out at you right to the
content USA Today site and what they did you
remember that try it was I don’t know if I saw that she’s something GDP are
related to us a tear and so you would say today I don’t know the reason but
they didn’t get all the tracking stuff sort of that with all the acceptance so
they they turned it off on the European side and yeah oh okay yeah okay Wow guess what it goes a bit faster yeah who
did that get and I mean they they have to they have to support their business
model of course actually how does some just amp support advertising at all is
now working out like no and multiple fronts so part of it is the analytics
and tracking and trying to work out well how do you do tracking without slowing
down the user experience is okay tracking is important you got to have it
and there’s no work going on right now is around trying to paralyze the
tracking so in order to show the use of the content but do the tracking in
parallel and can you do that rather than do all the tracking because what some of
the sites do at the moment is you redirect the user to a tracking site
number one and oh it redirects you to another tracking site to collect
something else and it redirects you to the real content yeah you get a few
bounces before you even get to the page and then the air the page can be in
really heavy and so forth and so the idea of the parallel tracking is then a
no taking user straight to the page but in parallel start doing the requests off
to the tracking site so you still collect the tracking information but do
it at the don’t delay the user experience in the process which is also
it’s a key thing of app as well because you’ve got to have the tracking
information but again when you preload you don’t want to trigger the tracking
then you want to trigger the tracking when the user brings the screen actually
clicks a link and brings the page up on the screen so tracking was actually
fundamental to app as well because the DES merchant was the site should know
when somebody’s viewed it and clicked on it not when it was in a search result
and so that’s again part of what app allows it to do and why it sort of tied
down is to sort of say no no because it’s app we know how the tracking works
we know we can fetch that page without any risk and we know that when we bring
it up on the webpage then all the tracking will fire and you’ll get all
the right things so it’s a bang all the rules to do good tracking but there are
challenges know people are still solving some of the problems and not trying to
pretend there are zero problems here there are they’re still working through
some of those problems but a lot of work has been put into that tracking and
continues to be put into their tracking and yeah some of it is cross browser
support know it’s things like you know Safari if you go off and hit the
tracking site my understanding is you know you get a cookie coming back if
depending upon the domain name Safari might say well sorry I’m not going to
accept that cookie that wasn’t a user interaction that was a bit of JavaScript
in the background whereas other browsers accept it and so if you can kind of use
cookie for session tracking you’ve got a problem because when you come then
through to your real main site hey that AB page it didn’t load from me
it loaded from the cache so whenever it she saw any requests and put the
tracking data so how do I know that that previous bit of tracking data that came
through was the same user that is now on my site and so amp has got concepts our
client ID and so forth in it but you got to get all these things to fit together
and know so and there are answers to all these things but when you try them out
you discover different problems in real life and hey that’s the way the world
works and great work through so you can either take the approach if don’t
release anything until it’s a hundred percent perfect or you can get out there
you try things you learn from it and get real-world experience and you just try
and do the best job you can and then you iterate on it and you keep working and
you keep working and you find the partners who are willing to take that
slight more leading-edge risk because well they get benefit out of it you get
lightning-fast page loads well hey guess what a whole lot of
people have found that increases their conversion rates increases their
engagement rates and a whole lot of things but you know any new technology
there’s risk and Google and part of my role is getting out there talking to
number these people I’m not the only one doing it obviously that feedback bring
it back to the core team so I go off and talk to the core team that’s it hey I
found out about this one I had a hackathon yesterday up in San Francisco
with using app for landing pages for Adwords because hey if you get you ad
come up faster that’s a good experience it makes perfect sense here so what are
some of the challenges and so people were trying to adopt it on to their
current sides and you know some of the problems technology problems it’s not
amp it was well I’ve got this current site I’m not quite sure how to merge
that technology in or I’ve got this current site and they want it to look
exactly the same or we’ve got our branding guidelines how do you make the
app toolkit behave like that so you just work through these different problems
yeah yeah it’s interesting it’s kind of like there’s this dilemma of you know
there’s all these ways that like you said there’s some fundamental things
that independent websites just can’t do like such as network speed and
prefetching and things like that but even among the things that they can’t
that they can do you know I think about some of the things I run into in the
magento space with people that are on older versions and they’ve got you know
slower websites and you you pull them up on a Google PageSpeed test and you go
and you guys have some work to do and then you know you tell them what it’s
gonna cost because like you said you need apps and talented front-end
engineers to speed some of these things up and sometimes it’s not economical for
them so there’s this dilemma of hey the web should be independent there
shouldn’t be this one monolithic site that’s sort of running hosting all the
content and yet at the same time some of these things it’s like well it’s so much
easier for them to just kind of fix it on their end like hey like we can host
this we like we can just fix not that everything’s fixed but like we can make
this thing run fast and give you a set of tools that you can use that you’re
not going to shoot yourself in the foot so it’s an interesting dilemma of the
things that I spend gonna be spending more and more time with but shortly
after I arrived there was a CMS summit and so they’re doing Google is out
reaching to the platforms as well they’re sort of saying how can we help
like partly engaging, giving guidance you know that’s why Google and Magento took
on PWA for example Google had out reached to Magento and sort of said hey
you know we’re coming across lots and lots of Magento sites out there did you
know there’s better front-end technologies around and that’s how the
conversation started off and you know that they provided a lot more
information about how you can go about doing it and I don’t know if you know
Rowan Merewood but he’s spending quite a bit of time with James and
they they they sync up and exchange ideas and there’s it’s a constant
ongoing conversation between the two organizations and so Google is both
doing things and it needs to do some short-term things but it’s also
investing into the platforms and talking to the platforms and know the platform’s
got their own roadmaps as well and so no not all of them want the help at that
time they’ve got other priorities yeah fair enough yeah but it no I do spend
time talking to platforms and I’ll give these step number one was to make sure I
knew what I was talking about before starting to do that of course that but
they’re going out and talking to the various platforms to make them aware of
the technologies help them learn how to adopt them because but it is a slow
process as we’d be discovering you know it takes a while to move the platform
because the platform’s got an ecosystem around it and so you’ve got to try and
help the ecosystem move along as well and so you know one thing we’d love is feedback from agencies what would be the fastest way to help you learn to
speed up a site any current sites as well like it’s not all about the future
the future is a multi-year roadmap it’s are slow it’s an ongoing slog know
Google spent a lot of time with WordPress they’re working on doing app
support built in as any plug into WordPress where you just turn it on and
your site becomes amp enabled you don’t have to do much you install plug-in you
know it’s a great experience will the same technique work for Magento yeah
maybe maybe not now what is the right way is it a matter of like is it going
to ever work for my No nobody’s going to get the investment
back into an n1 site so here’s a matter of teaching people how to use tools like
lighthouse is it a matter of writing guide books to speed up you know here’s
what you should do for me images and and so Google’s actually quite interested
and if anybody wants to feed me back that sort of information I’d love to get
it it’s sort of like I’ve got my own opinions but there’s nothing like
getting it from the horse’s mouth like if Google actually one of the things I
was shocked I didn’t really realize Google actually has got a whole team
massive team of people that goes out and helps people externally to get their
sites to run faster no and and developer relations is actually not the primary
team doing that they’ve got like a consulting group and it’s more in the
sales side of things and probably ties into Adwords a lot and so forth but they
Google wants the web to be a good and open and healthy place it doesn’t want
to suck it all in it’s don’t achieve Google’s goals
actually yeah it’s not what Google wants to do it was just simply a way of
getting something up and going right now today it works
once you can get it so that it can trust other cases and make sure their content
and make sure the content obeys certain rules and it’s not gonna block that slow
down the queue because it can’t just prefetch any old page one you got the
privacy problem and two there’s the risk that that javascript is doing a bad
thing and then all slow down the search page well that sort of defeats the
purpose and so it’s it’s working through these issues and trying to work out and
so there’s concepts like no feature policies that you know rather than
saying thou shalt do app to get an optimized experience thou shalt support
these three feature policies you allow small inline CSS you will not have
JavaScript of blocks the render queue you come up with some of these sorts of
policies and then any Content that obeys the rules can get the same treatment
instead of saying app because at the moment it’s those rules that we want but
the only way that we’ve got today that works at guarantees them is if you use
out we know you’re following the rules because we designed out to follow the
rules and part of it was but let’s build app
and work out what the rules are and great now we can work out what what the
rules we should be doing yeah right could you could you give sort of
like an overview of where amp is that for e-commerce at the moment like I I’ve
definitely as a user run into content websites content pages on em totally get
that workflow I don’t know that I’ve actually seen like ass like a store on
amp so what is that what does that flow look like like what sort of the current
state of where things are right I think the Coptic oh let me go check that out
you might need to do it on a mobile device recently but so carved calm is a
Magento site which is actually both using app for the landing page so if you
do a search for a carved case there’s a good chance that the ad that comes up
will be an app page and then when you click on it and go through to the site
it’s a PWA oh nice and so you know it’s quite a nice site and it’s not the only
one around but that’s no there are sites already doing this today and so do have
people built the whole experience of the site all being amp well I haven’t heard
so many of them it is definitely got some real benefits and it’s the one of
the ones I’m sort of exploring at the moment but it the the reality of the
real world is frequently I got a site how do I get amp added to my site and so
if you’re just adding out to the site that’s where things like paired landing
pages to say okay I’m going to create a page I don’t want to touch the whole
site I don’t wanna rebuild the whole site I’m just want to try this out I’ll
get a paired landing page up and going I’m gonna make it look like my main site
but I should be able to have that in app until a lot of people are doing that and
that gets you the first load from Google search to your site to be much faster
and so they can click on it but then how do we get oh but I want to pick the
colors do I have to click and go to another page before I can start
interacting and so what amp has added over time in its like a year or two ago
now it’s not like new they’ve got a lot more interactivity you can now do things
like pick colors and it will do a dynamic refresh of an API call and get
back to data and refresh the page so it changes all the images over
but it’s not full JavaScript they’ve got their own language built into it to stop
you from doing anything it’s going to risk the page and they’re looking at
JavaScript they’re looking now to sort of say hey can we loosen up the
restrictions and still give people more flexibility and so it’s it’s not like
amp is a dead project that’s static they’re adding more and more and more
components to it all the time that more than this built-in carousels just say
amp carousel throw all the things in the carousel and great you’ve got a carousel
that can do all the swiping you stick a few attributes on to it and you can
control it you can do no checkboxes and radio buttons and you can click buttons
and read load state from the server and dynamically refresh the page that’s all
there and so you can do a lot of it but then there are still little gaps like
okay how do i display what my cart is and it’s not that the technology doesn’t
support it but you need to glue it into your current site and so if I’m going to
do an add to cart button that’s where it gets a little bit more work there’s lots
of things part of things that I’m gonna be potentially looking at is like okay
well how do you do a landing page for app and then make add to cart work
nicely or is the better solution change your product page to be at conformant
and so there’s some of the things that I’m exploring for Magento and other
platforms is trying to work out what is the right story and you know and
fiddling around with these tools to try and work out how do you get this to work
together nicely yeah right yeah architectural how do you balance out
those trade-offs of having full control over your product page versus fitting
into something like amp which probably gives you a lot of best practices out of
the box but also gives you a bit of a dependency there yeah and how do you do
it in a cost-effective way that people can’t afford to adopt because you come
along and say oh yeah amp is great redo your whole website yeah right I mean who
can afford to do that just to get amp and the answer to me is if most of your
traffic is coming from app and it’s a lot I’m sorry from Google search and
from other search engines it may actually be worth doing
but if it’s not and may not be worth doing no like there’s any technology
that says oh everybody should just do this one
regardless it’s just not the case right you can help you
it can give huge conversions you get some people getting spectacular results
well everybody get the same results no right so I was playing with carved a
little bit when I go to carve calm I see the nice PWA I’m trying to find the amp
landing pages like if I do a search like carved case I see some search results
for for example a carved iPhone case and it’s a I think that’s a Google Shopping
and then link and then that lands me at carve calm so I don’t think I’m actually
hitting any of the the amp pages we could I could figure this out offline
but it’s it’s it’s good to have a nice use case to to refer to yeah where they
actually went through how they actually built it all got it I’ll find that and
link it up yeah so then you know so that was yeah so that’s a great overview of
kind of where amp is at overall it sounds like maybe most of the time
you’re maybe thinking more about having your landing pages maybe from ads or
different things like that land on your amp pages and then patent
and because it’s common for people to want to try it before committing their
whole site to it it’s got problems though and so this is one of the areas
that personally I’m sort of digging into with more is to try and work out the
right story because you know one of the bits of feedback we got was oh great
I’ve got two versions of my page now to maintain right it’s just one and so it
may be then that know what I’m starting to do is look at some of the e-commerce
platforms and saying hey this platform you can convert your main page to app
this platform well it’s a bit of a pain so it’s probably it’s probably better
just to stay with a paired landing page and then okay well how do we educate
people and how to achieve it do we do some proof of concepts do we build a
Magento theme and if there’s different strategies we could
use and that some of the things we’re thinking through at the moment so it’s
not like this is a finished area yeah but lots of people are using our blots
of people getting success out of it but as I said no technology is a solution to
everything what’s most important to you business is it is getting more SEO like
it’s not improving your ranking it delivers a faster experience we know
that if faster experiences the slower the experiences people abandon the page
and so it’s not like do app because it’ll boost your Google rankings that’s
not actually the reason if it can be a a clear-cut argument to get hire people to
listen but it’s more about you know if you don’t respond in three seconds fifty
percent of the people will just give up yeah which at the end of the day is what
Google’s trying to model is is what are what’s most useful to end-users and
they’ve done a pretty darn good job of that over over time and so yeah so if
you just focus on improving your end-user experience exactly that’s we’re
probably gonna yeah okay well now we’ve got the technology how do you get it
rolled out everywhere how do you educate people on it and it’s it’s a problem
especially at scale and it’s yeah and so we know Google looks at short-term
solutions and it looks at long-term solutions it does both right yeah it’s
interesting you know you mentioned the idea of hey could you throw your whole
site on amp that you’d have some limitations but that would be kind of an
interesting approach it’s interesting because people can have entire
businesses that are just on social media that are just on I’m starting to get a bunch of
background noise over there oh that’s better now
can you still there yeah oh yeah it just got kind of fuzzy okay
hopefully they’ll clear up but yeah I mean you can have your whole whole
business on your YouTube page and your Facebook and Instagram and you can
almost have entire businesses built on other platforms and so the idea of
having your whole your whole e-commerce site on amp is it’s kind of interesting
actually probably you know for some scrappy business out there that wanted
to try that out play with it that’s good using speed up development no playing
around if you can view or a completely server side at the time so what is view but allows you to build a series of
pages that you can navigate the plane but use modern rendering technology but
builder can put the server-side generated side so it’s all server-side
rendered but still using you components perhaps that’s a liar error on top but
anything can use UV technology to build up the branding and your component
library for the styling symbol a server-side side or and the reason for
that the server side is it helps with it search but the page
pre-rendered okay put a blog out with a couple of other days Google can index
drivers to bring pages and it’s going to put more effort into doing a better and
better job of it but it’s add a little bit of delay in the pipeline and if
you’ve got a really dynamic site like the laser paint if you want to get rid
of that delay the best solution today is to have a server-side record and so why
not have the whole site server-side render than all air so this is some of
the ideas of sort of playing around with this but is that better than building
and give the theme it’s all bad faith because it’s a bit of work with what
mobile people are and they spent a couple of days on it I think and built
and then to no one page got it up it wasn’t very pretty but it’s not actually
that hard what you do right right right by the way Andrew in the chat did
mention that you you appear to be fighting with the snow started here your
bike ice I thought it might have just been me but I think I don’t know if
maybe you could unplug and replug you’re my king or something like that it got
that sounds better see not hearing the snow anymore but now
night not hearing you either still not even think we’ll get this
figured out here still not hearing anything see still not hearing anything
doesn’t seem like you’re muted cuz usually if you’re muted it’ll show a
mute icon thanks Laura digging the recliner the best it’ll
cause it my burqa lounger still not hearing anything it’s really strange um
huh it’s really weird I wonder if you if you
have no mic at all if it might work okay it looks like he’s gonna reconnect just
jumped out he’s gonna reconnect kid revert yeah hey ah I heard something but
I’m not hearing you now as I see you talking okay now you’re muted now it’s
showing me a mute icon okay now the mute icon is gone still
can’t hear anything oh I think I could I think I heard
something Hey Oh perfect okay you sound great
awesome rebooted different headset hopefully
this works better there we go yeah that sounds actually amazing so sorry about
that so sorry for my am so I can’t remember where we were but
so think about a amp amp is great how’s it to summarize things it’s good it’s
got its users uses and it’s like the the PWA I think we’re started getting
integration talking about next as well the complete side so it’s that’s
something I’m having a bit of a play with so yeah I dabble again and part of
is trying to work out well at the end of the day if you can come up with a really
clever technological solution that nobody can adopt that’s not particularly
useful there so no I’m I’m very much interested in getting feedback of for
those who want to implement amp what is the best way would people find it more
useful to have an app theme for Magento one or magenta two would people find it
better to have a separate gateway that talks api’s back-end I’m very open very
interested to find out more so thats some dansgame it’s like that’s really
current that’s what I’m doing right now is just sort of dabbling with some of
these technologies to work at what’s possible okay yeah no we’ll definitely
be pushing this out there and try to get you as much as much feedback on that as
we can you you said one phrase I wasn’t quite sure what it was you said a paired
landing page so one approach with amp is to say create a separate page and so I
don’t touch my main site you know I don’t risk anything on my main site I’m
gonna build a new page with a different URL it might have slash amp on the end
or amp as part of the domain name or something like that
and so god be my new page I can build that up I can get it I can test it I can
and great when it’s when I’m convinced that’s the right thing to do I can send
all my traffic to it instead from for Adwords or what however you want to
organic search and so forth and so the main page has a link to the amp version
and the amp version has a link to the the canonical the main page
and so that’s how the two work together and that’s how the crawler and so for
example you don’t normally get mobile amp pages coming up it’s it’s more for
mobile accelerated mobile pages all the pages and you know it’s just but there’s
all sorts of ramifications are there and no long term should we get on to the
desktop hey interesting question and no do I
have all the answers no I don’t have all the answers I don’t control it all I’m
just part of a big and large organization working through all these
issues with teams of people behind it all yeah what are the like what are some
of the results and I know you’re not like in the marketing department but
what are some of the results that like you mentioned carved or other merchants
that are investing in getting on some of their pages landing page lamp Aliexpress
switchy remember all the numbers I probably should bring up a web browser
but there’s a whole case studies site but I can’t say on the internal mailing
lists I frequently see no site eggs got you know double D conversion rates so
doubling is not shocking I suspect it may depend upon how bad your site is at
the moment yeah there’s always that fact you might get this benefit from it but
you know some sites have have difficulties and challenges one of the
things are discovered if you do a crappy amp’d landing page you don’t get good
results just in yeah absolutely some people sort of say oh wait up a quick
aunt page and and it doesn’t look anything like this pretty is well
designed as a main site and they say oh my results were terrible guess what you
amp is not gonna solve UX no UX matters speed matters they both matter there’s
not nice formulas to tell you oh you expen is 23% point better than speed
don’t have that level of granularity of data at this stage unfortunately but
speed definitely we know people give up on sites if speed is not there no
doubt about it it’s got lots of metrics on that but also know that if you do a
crappy looking site that just on your main site UX matters on your main site
how you lay out your page matters where the call-to-action buttons matters saw
one page and I looked at the two pages I thought gee it really made that much of
a difference and sometimes the changes are shocking so there was one site that
had quite a bit of detail on one image on the site and then they changed it
over to three images where you clicked on one of the three images and it took
you through to the area and no engagement doubled and it was just due
to the way the page was laid out and it was just clear at a workout at oh okay
I’ve got these three choices click I’ll go through the next page and I’ll go
into that next level it was too scary having too much detail for a sub-segment
of the market and oh it wasn’t the image on top that got clipped the most it was
the image at the bottom Oh guess what and it’s interesting thing and I’ve read
a bit of research recently and I haven’t really got my head completely around it
you notice apps tend to put the buttons at the top bottom yeah don’t but mobile
sites still tend to put them at the top right that is interesting hmm well
there’s a reason people put the buttons at the bottom they’re easier to get to
with your thumb right right but we don’t seem to have made that transition yet on
websites right for mobile obviously for a desktop I’m not saying buttons at the
bottom of the right thing for a desktop those lots of interesting things you
know I remember all that discussion also with um you know the Dux team at Magento
we’ve got the tabs down the side Hey well it’s actually quite convenient for
a tablet and it works well on a desktop and so you’ve got this good sort of mix
between the two might not be the right thing for a mobile device well guess
what the admin interface it probably wouldn’t try and a mobile device is too
much page not anyway do you do you have full control over or
relatively full control over like CSS within within an app there are
restrictions so there are things you’re not allowed to do in the CSS but yes it
is HTML it’s a set of library of web components
and a set of restrictions to say and it’s really sorta like don’t use your
own JavaScript you can mess it up too easily if you do the wrong JavaScript or
block the page render and it’s all this cascading sort of thing like oh I’ve
downloaded the HTML I’ve started parsing and said oh I need a JavaScript library
okay we’ll go fetch that okay I’ll go fetch that I’ve got the library great oh
we’ve got to start executing it because they’ve got to be the code on the page
and I don’t know whether it’s safe to render yet I’ll go run to that code okay
go run that oh it needs some more JavaScript okay go go fetch another
JavaScript and here’s cascading Ripple and so it’s things like no don’t try try
to avoid that try to load things asynchronously so it doesn’t block the
main render thread try and and so I’m not saying you can get rid of everything
but it’s really a better minimizing it and it seems like Google Fonts why does
Google prefer you to point to their copy of the fonts because the cache is better
hello user goes to one site then I go to another site hopefully the fonts being
used before Wilden that will speed up that users experience whereas if you
keep copying all the fonts yourself you don’t get the casing benefit of fonts so
if she helps everybody so there’s a whole lot of things that no they do put
thought into a lot of these things right right no no I really ever I’m really
enjoying it so the original question you know PWA versus amp and we’ve sort
of touched on I mean yeah you touched on a lot you talked about the way carve
does it where they’ve got the combination but how do you think about
that so there’s interesting patterns emerging so what carved it did for
example is they have their product pages being at pages and and usually you can
think of it like as content here is the content that I’m displaying and so when
you land on one of those things whenever you click a link and go off to somewhere
else you actually go to a PWA and it’s sort of like a shell concept and so
whenever it goes to display a product it’ll actually fetch the amp page as the
content to drop within the PWA show and so the PWA does a whole lot of things
itself like it might do the category navigation and the menus and so forth
but the amp page is sort of like this content block but that’s how
they did it now they’re continually trying things so what’s on the site
today I don’t know this is I got this one from their app can’t talk they did
other people you know somebody pointed out like I’ve got a blog out just
recently and somebody pointed out oh yeah don’t mix up PWA you know react and
so forth is not the only way to do PWA yeah absolutely correct I simplify at
times because there’s so many ways you can obey all the rules of what a PWA is
you know it’s really it’s an umbrella a series of principles to use it’s not
like a library app is a library it’s something concrete you have to go use
PWA is a number of principles to then go off and follow and so how do you get
these two things to work together well amp is not very friendly towards
client-side Dom tree manipulation at the moment and so one of the questions is
should it be and so app works really well on server-side render today you can
use it in the PWA you just need to be careful but it’s
trying to work out well should you go back and try it because it does a whole
lot of optimizations behind the scenes no it puts restrictions on your CSS to
sort of say no no don’t let’s use that because it creates bad experiences like
it slows down the render tree too much there’s not much it says not to use but
things like image no no don’t use the image tag use the amp image tag and thou
shalt always specify dimensions for the aspect ratio the layout engine works out
the right size for this thing and it there is a bit of JavaScript there but
it works that out once it works it out the page doesn’t jump around you know
there’s sites you go to and oh it starts bring up a bit of text and then you go
to click on a link and something that takes jumps down because an image
appears right in the middle there yeah at all sometimes it’s an ad and you go
clicking that ad G risky click app is basically says no no no don’t want that
sort of janking experience behind the scenes it computes the layout of the
page and optimizes it so it comes up fast and then if the image takes the
world around well great okay that’s fine but don’t do bad you
of having the page reshuffle itself around as it loads and so it’s put
restrictions on how you do your page assembly but it is still HTML let’s use
div tags use all these sorts of CSS and CSS styling and flows they’re just
trying to stop you from doing things that can slow down the page render that
can make the page jump around so that there are restrictions but they’ve there
for a purpose they’re not just there because they so CSS bad no no it is CSS
you draft to write CSS they’re trying to get you to write small CSS to fit it
into the page to be concise because guess what it makes the page faster it
avoids having to go fetch another URL to be able to render the page and that’s
the whole goal get the fête page fast right so is there only one way to do PW
and a and app together no there’s there’s lots of different ways is there
it’s really a matter of to me sort of trying to work out per platform what’s
the right way for this platform to use these technologies together in a way
that makes it easy to adopt because you’ve got to think about the adoption
effort not just what is the best technical solution and so great Magento
is building a PWA studio fantastic they’re solving all the hard problems
you don’t want every single ecommerce site to have to resolve those problems
that’s why the platform is doing it Hey view storefront works today it hooks up
you know you got the option if somebody wants to try it out go try it out I
don’t have shares in them it’s just an open source project but no people
shouldn’t be deciding what makes sense for them you know his views storefront
got the Magento extension model solved no you got to build the whole thing by
yourself you know whereas Magento they’re worrying about the ecosystem
they’re trying to work out a good way to build all these tools so that everybody
can play together and to me that’s a whole value I think there will be more
and more integration but that’s the value of these platforms is is a whole
lot of integrations pre done that’s as much the value is the actual code base
itself it’s um like people have tried hooking this product and that product
together and so they know how to do it it’s a solved problem you’ve got this
work to get sign up and going that’s the value of a
platform in an ecosystem it’s that knowledge and that code prebuilt does um
his view story you mentioned I think that you were chatting with the view
storefront guys actually did an interview with Tom car Walker recently I
think they recently hit their 1.0 general release have they are they
thinking about a MP amp oh yeah we were chatting about it a
little bit um there’s no immediate plans there I was actually just having a go at
trying to build a theme it’s also the first time I was learning view so it’s
sort of tinkering and they’re giving me a bit of a hand as it goes along we’re
gonna stay in contact but you know it’s not like cold next week we’re launching
ant for view storefront no it is a matter of experimentation and part of
the challenge that I found was not view storefront it was app isn’t really just
designed for client-side rendering and so at the moment I’m gonna start on the
server-side render with you which is where I’m some now playing with next and
so it’s a matter of dabbling and trying it is and it’s not a finished story I’d
like to say it’s all perfect got every single answer no and but but trying to
work out then how to deliver something in the short term because I do think
that long term is the more open sort of approach to no you don’t need to do amp
you can follow the rules but how far off is that well who knows one you’re
getting work out all the answers then you’ve got to get it in or all the web
browsers and you’re gonna get you know it these things take time you know it
could be a year or two years before it’s you can actually truly rely on it or
what do people do today well yeah amp is a solution that works well today yeah
not going to touch don’t touch your site for two years well maybe you don’t use
amp you just come back and reconsider it later and work out what’s around you
know you should pnub this PWA studio use amp it’s a really interesting question
when is PwC a studio going to be live because hey they’ve got to get the
studio done they’ve got to get all the pages convert it across they’ve gotta go
the extensions convert it across and then you’ve got to start getting sites
being built and so right now at the moment you know
I’m being totally upfront I’m sort of scratching my head sort of saying should
they be building Peter amp into the story or not or by the time they get
there is there going to be a different solution around it’s a more generic
solution and just conform to that so that’s one I’m scratching my head over
at the moment so I’m you have to do app yeah good answer I’m actually more
interested in app in the moment of well how do you get all the current sites
know until pwace studio comes along how can you help the current sites get
faster and app may be a good answer for that one may not yeah what do you think
is I mean we’ve talked a little bit about it but but for the kind of 80% of
the existing sites out there which probably are on Magento one still for
that you know large majority what do you think are some of the quickest wins I
mean maybe they start to throw some of these paired landing pages but but how
should merchants that maybe aren’t even on m2 yet you know that migration
decision is something that maybe they’ve been pushing off and are there ways for
them to get some quicker wins in the meantime yeah and that’s what I’ve been
thinking about and so I don’t know absolute final answer still thinking
about it but there are some things so for example
to get the first landing page doing an hour page is one approach and there are
extensions in the marketplace for Magento to do app by the way it’s not
like you have to write all the code you can look in the marketplace there’s a
couple there this is not product endorsement I haven’t personally used
them in great depths but I think it was at rocket plum was one sounds for you
and it gets you there faster and so maybe that’s a way to look at I believe
they’ve also got a magenta one version of it and are they better than the other
expand extensions well no I’m not saying that it’s just one of the names I’ve
heard of and so that that might be a way of getting up and going there was at
what mobile joint blog post we did know it had some of the techniques up and
going do people want more demos or more themes like do people have an existing
theme that they’d like to try and adjust and actually make the current product
page to be app conformed because then you don’t have to maintain
two separate pages or is the maintenance not really a problem and then so it’s
fine having a separate page but then if you get them the landing page faster all
the rest of the site isn’t sped up it’s just the first page are you getting
gonna still lose them on the subsequent pages well if your site’s too slow you
can still lose them afterwards so you know I’d actually be step one actually
normally be recommending hey try using lighthouse you know it’s built into
Chrome other sorts of tools around web page test all these sorts of things do
you understand how fast or slow your site is you know I frequently know it’s
just in Chrome you go into Chrome developer tools go to the audits tab
pointed at your side go to a different few pages run it and you know what’s the
most common thing I see images people have got these super high-res images
updates this is the basic stuff how about you resize your image and read
upload that download images because guess what no screen on earth can handle
that resolution so the web browsers downloading this mega file and so it’s
amazing that some of the times it’s just as simple as is that yeah it seems so so
um I’m gonna ask a dumb question here so with the idea of that’s what I
specialize it the idea of having let’s say they say hey I’m gonna put my entire
product page on amp I’m not gonna do the two separate things I want my product
page entirely on amp and so I understand a use case where somebody comes from
Google they do a search they hit the the amp page from Google that’s going to
take them to a Google hosted amp page right of their product page so there is
the amp cache so there is that cached version of it but that it’s a
read-through cache like it gets it from the origin and IV there’s no you can
specify your time delay of how long you want it to live in the cache and all
that sort of stuff so it’s like a CDN oh okay so you can so they can hit that
page on mydomain.com slash product and then the same the same markup the sort
of amp friendly markup and CSS and JavaScript all kind of stuff will render
just just fine within their browser and then it’s also viewed within the
– okay okay it’s more like a CDN you can go straight to the origin god
you probably want to go straight to the origin if you’re doing an email campaign
you’re putting a link up and your page will still go faster potentially if
you’ve got a bad site with lots of blocking JavaScript and so forth your
app page will still go faster without going anywhere near the app cache and
it’s if your site has got bad practices in it but it’s not like all of them if
they’ve done a good job of the site you won’t get much benefit and the advantage
eventually upgrading a current page and making it out conforming is I don’t have
to maintain two pages every single page well you could if a page is slow and you
find it out but it’s sort of like okay well I’ve got a block it’s like the cart
how do I do the cart should I do the cart versus app and so there’s some
there’s some technical trickiness into it for UI concepts that’s spread across
multiple pages do I do two versions of it or do I try and merge it and carve
talked about some of the tricks they did to actually get that to go faster in
their talk but it’s not the only way of doing it but but that’s really where I
think actually think the value that Google may be able to provide you know
hey yeah some agencies interested in working this area and love to talk to
him about let’s mock together some examples and write up some best
practices and work out the easiest way to get something like this integrated in
because you know I’m not a Magento I don’t go right building themes for
Magento storefronts especially magenta one I mainly worked in Magento two so
I’d love to work with people and happy to sort of do some joint job blog posts
or anything like that for anybody interested awesome awesome
how does Google Shopping tie into all of this oh it’s just a small little topic
on the side there’s a number of different initiatives going on and so
one of the things you can do if I talk about a number of different bits of flow
so there is one of the things you can do is most people know about ads on Google
and so you can upload your inventory to Google through a product called Merchant
Center it can read it from feeds you can also
encode what’s called structured data straight into your web pages which has
got a benefit that there’s no no risk of the feed and the page being out of sync
because Google check some of those things and will start knockin pages out
because if the oh but your feed said the price was $1.00 but the actual page when
people go there says it’s five dollars no what – Noah – you shouldn’t be doing
that so if you put the structured data straight on the page you don’t have that
risk of sinking because the page is where Google will get the data straight
from but sometimes it’s easy to build a feed okay understand that that’s a
technology choice sometimes feeds are easy to integrate or you’ve already got
it or third-party products do it and so but there’s this sometimes there’s a
risk of I put it on sale that’s why the price has dropped so my page has gone
down but you haven’t picked up the feed yet and so you’ve got these
synchronization timing sort of issues that come up but anyway once you got it
loaded up the Merchant Center you can start doing things like ad campaigns you
know she starts saying I want that thing listed in an ad campaign but there’s
also other integrations with various shopping experiences so some of the ads
along the top paid to get into the shopping experience well it gets it from
the same Merchant Center so once you get your data into Merchant Center and if
you’ve got location information or guess what you can start hooking into Maps
because local search can start telling you where products are local to you if
you want those sorts of experiences like find a restaurant near me you know or
ordered but if it knows the location of the inventory you can start doing and
talking about products that are close to you now these are continually evolving
technologies it’s not like oh we’ve built something and nothing’s ever
changing and so that’s why I said I have to hesitate a little bit what’s possible
today may not be the same as what’s possible tomorrow and there’s new things
coming out and you know I can’t talk about and so there’s sort of certain
principles that I can generally recommend structured data gives you more
information and it means Google can do more with it I can’t promise when it
were used but if I look at recipe information no that’s one they have used
podcast information is one recently if you put richer content this
structured data so that Google can understand a meaning of all those fields
rather than just being presentational HTML then inline in the search results
when you do a recipe search you can actually sort of put a a puts a picture
of the recipe and it puts the cooking time underneath and the prep time and so
the search results in the search is now better quality and the podcasts is
something they’ve done recently so you actually play notice results yeah well
and so there’ll be more and more of this to reach you the data that’s available
in the structured data the more it be able to do in the future
hey they’re gonna test it they’re gonna work out what works well what doesn’t
work out well hey that’s much easier if they’ve got
data to test it with and sends a bit of a chicken and egg which one do you do
first but you know they’re constantly thinking about those sorts of things of
how to do it better and so voice dropping well there is a voice shopping
experience there is a form you can apply to get into the program online because
they’re not opening up to everybody instantly they want to learn how to do
it with a smaller number of players do a good job open up wider over time and can
I tell you the timelines no do you want to do your own experience today well
that’s why I’ve been playing with the assistant some of the other posts have
been doing recently like how do I do a branded experience I don’t want a google
voice experience personally I want to have my voice I want to have my Ronald
McDonald the clown if I’m McDonald’s or whatever that I kind of think for your
brand is yeah so I’ve been playing around with ok well yeah you can do all
your own voice recordings ah unfortunately you don’t get the
automatic language translation but I’ll guess what
if you look watch Google i/o they are experimenting with different voices and
doing better quality voices so you can see it’s gonna come that you can
actually start getting a generated voice it sounds like a real person well that
can now become your branded voice rather than Google Voice and so there’s a
number of technologies you can gonna see come down the line and I think brands
supporting is important for commerce should you do it online support first
well that’s your choice you’ve got a pick I might try to do
support am i trying to do sales Google assistant has got
or actions on Google as the SDK name it’s got a transactions API that hooks
through into your back-end but sort of chose to find that right balance between
providing some things built in and so you can build your own shopping
experience is that the right approach long term good question
I’m not sure I think long term the idea is as assistant gets smarter and smarter
and gets better at doing true conversations and understanding context
it should be able to work it out more you know at the moment the apps you know
you’ve got to say talk to app name and then you can interact with it well more
and more there’s more built in intense and coming into assistant and I’m sure
it’s happening with a lexer as well but you know I’ll just talk about Google
stuff of course the building intents are getting more and more understanding
context more and more and drawing those experiences in as they learn how to do
it to go to do it across languages you’ve got to do it across cultures
there’s there’s a whole heap of problems to solve here it’s not an easy problem
but they know they’re working hard at it to get it all in and so yeah you can
like if it’s got to say one thing today it’s like hey look at getting your data
in as structured data how what’s the value today well I’m not saying race off
and doing it instantly but you know if you’re redesigning your site I
definitely look at incorporating that data because it is a way it’s schema.org
structured data it’s not Google structured data
it is schema.org structured data so Pinterest Facebook all these other
organizations anybody is crawling your site can then potentially use that data
and you know not only Google it’s that’s good for the win we can get more
engagement going on it’s not just a way like if Google was doing their own one
I’d be a little bit more hesitant to recommend it but no this is just get
data out there so people can crawl it and start doing cool things with your
data that you hadn’t imagined to bring more people through to your site good
thing yeah yeah it’s um in terms of the structured data is that just like
getting you know product attributes and different things like that
within the schema.org SKU kind of format on
like your markup on your product pages that kind of a there’s several ways to
encode it one way is just to use attributes in your HTML to say oh the
content of this element is the price the content of this element is the color the
kind of this element is the title another way is to encode it as a little
bit of JSON at the top of the page which makes it a bit more easier and reliable
to pass but they both do the same thing it’s just saying on this page there are
a list of products there’s ten of them product number one here’s the SKU here’s
the order information here’s a link to it here’s the color here’s its price its
description and it’s in a way that another program can then the crawler or
something can pick up and then do something with because it knows that
this is the price and here’s the discounted and is though and so the
Scimitar organs defined a whole lot of attributes about products they defined
the entity of a product and all the attributes that schema.org understand so
if you use that markup anybody who understands schema.org will be able to
understand that markup rather than trying to scrape the page now if you’re
terrified of your pages being scraped it’s not a good idea because it is
making your data easier for someone for a machine to access and incorrectly
interpret and then do something with but there are cool things that become
possible you know who wants to build a voice interface to the website in
addition watch its work yeah I’d rather have somebody else build that one voice
interface at the moment so maybe some somebody goes off and builds a online
commerce mall and crawls a horde of pages well they’ve maybe schema.org is
the way of getting that data into that new product that somebody’s gone off and
built yeah it’s interesting because I’ve been kind of looking at at voice and
thinking that there’s got to be some interesting applications there for
ecommerce and kind of putting feelers out there trying to understand what
people are doing and you know the whole product thing search for products by
voice seems like something interesting obviously like Alexa has that baked in
nicely my Alexa turning on now has that baked in nicely to to Amazon but then I
think like well how do you independent merchants do that do they build their
own you know app like that seems like a mess
and then when I saw your post where you talked about how that’s getting baked
into Google Merchant Center I didn’t realize that and I was like oh that’s
that actually makes perfect sense that seems like a a great donation you know I
think of the filters on my fridge I’d actually think in that case an app
might make more sense because I go through – I’d actually don’t know what
the brand of the KitchenAid or whatever it is if they know that I’ve bought a
fridge of them they know the model of my fridge why can’t I just say hey Google
ask Hitchin aid to send me a new water filter and done well that might not make
sense in a generic search so it depends on the sort of search you’re doing
because KitchenAid knows my brand of fridge and knows my address and knows
all the starter already and so by doing something like that and maybe they send
a confirmation through to my phone so I got to press a button so that nobody
else the kids can’t order new things at home or you could have think through
this whole interaction series so it’s not clear to me I don’t think anybody
really knows and I don’t think there will be one experience I think there
will be multiple experiences based on your business model are you a
subscription business well that’s different than if I’m just selling
things online am i selling lots of things cheap well that’s gonna be
different than I’m selling Gucci handbags you know there’s there’s
differences in experiences people need to think through what they want to be
able to do but if you notice that blog post I put up the code for my internal
app you know I got something doing something somewhat serious in like a
thousand lines of code it’s depends what you’re trying to do
and what systems you need to hook through to now what’s the API is there
now I’m gonna make that longer but it’s not like 10,000 lines of code and it
depends on the richness of the experience you want
so I actually quite enjoyed it I got that whole thing built by myself I
didn’t need a team yeah yeah actually I was to say maybe you’d give just a brief
overview of the of that Google assistant app that that you built she talked about
post yeah so I built it little project I’m doing it myself on my
own so this thing actually is for doing Bible verses and it comes up and tells
you a different Bible verse and I’ve been having a bit of fun with animation
so it’s trying to actually get video animated and characters into it and I
can’t quite do that yet because I wanted to do it and I made a
character with the voice and make it a bit more engaging hopefully that will
come along soon so I bring up the picture of the character and I’ve got
the voice recording in that particular characters voice and they say little
Bible verse and but the thought was well how do you engage with a commerce site I
just used that because I had as a sample data how do you engage with a commerce
site and have a branded experience maybe it’s instructional videos on your
product and so I have it hooked up so that it demonstrates that you can show
me instructional video well it sort of says show me episode 3 but you can say
show me instructional video for and the product name and if you’ve registered
your product in the past you can just say you know show me the tips and tricks
video and it will link you off to a YouTube thing so it’s so like it’s an
engagement sort of way so and this is also where I think about things like AR
and so forth is you know interesting things if you’ve got a complex product
will it help you understand I pointed at your product and show you where the
buttons out of press next no click here and do this and you get this no
superimposed image showing you what to actually do oh here’s how you lift the
thing up to put the new coffee in I think they’re going to be the
interesting sorts of uses of these different technologies is trying to work
out but it should be driven from a business need if people are having
trouble learning how to use your product how can they engage in it if you need to
remember something about them how do you remember that how do and you’ve got to
fit this together so I’m not saying voice is going to be a solution to
everything I think voice purchasing without a
screen if I’m browsing for a new product sounds like a torture now please never
screen you got to be able to see the thing unless it’s like toothpaste or you
know mouthwash product yeah if I’m reordering piece of cake yeah and so but
I think people are still discovering the right
do some of these experiences you know I’m not saying that people don’t know
anything but I don’t think people know everything yet yeah
and it’s a matter of understanding for your brand is there something
specialized that you want to do was chatting to someone yesterday and David
with a car park or Auto Parts and they’ve talked about the sheer number of
products I have and category hierarchies with a thousand things underneath the
category item well guess what I don’t want you to do a voice interface at this
sort of thing it iterates through all the thousand items did you mean this
this this is it possible to do a generics shopping experience with
category browse I don’t know that’s where you might need customized
experiences to sort of say on voice I do want to allow it because anybody in the
know somebody out in the field can do it and it’s easier with a voice interface
for somebody’s trying to fix a forklift and they just want to start using the
voice like oh yeah I got a I’ve got a brand x ik Y Z forklift and it’s got a
broken wheel what do I need and then you can start listing out some of the parts
and you know it might be using a combination of pitches like yeah is this
really the forklift you got and show a picture on your phone well great but
that voice interaction just makes it easier than going
tap tap tap on this microscopic little keyboard yeah well maybe that does need
a dedicated experience and the more complicated the experience obviously
it’s gonna need more code but but it’s driven from a business problem are most
your people ordering your parts out on the field well how do they recognize the
thing do they not know where to find a serial number ok well then try the
vision recognition I’ll get into something like google lens or something
so they can take a picture of it and it says oh I can tell you what that one is
because I’ve got vision recognition and I work it out for you so there’s a but
you need to think about your business problems for your site and the more
merchants you talk to the more you realize yes some people are just selling
products online achieve is so many people doing so much more and they
understand their business and I understand the problems are going
through and I think more and more technologies should be used to solve
their problems not just talk about technology
isolation yeah yeah in the attention with the voice apps like I think I read
somewhere that something like 80% or 90% of users that install like a like a
third party let’s say Alexa app or Google home a person at Alexa training
on like 80 or 90 percent of them don’t return to use the app and I thought
about how I had installed a bunch I had this one day I installed some different
apps for playing games with the kids and and it was really fun they asked you
some games that you know tell you to like deck do things like an animal and
different animals monkeys and stuff but then the next day you forget what the
name what and by nature of voice it’s not like you can look at your desktop
and see the thing you installed yesterday and click on it you have to
remember what that voice command is you just forget so a lot of people some some
very high percentage of people sort of bounce as repeat users so you can do
like things have still being worked on the things like there’s push
notifications people are trying out and you know assistant has got push
notifications and I worked out that oh hang on I enrolled as the app for kids
well I can’t do push notifications to kids because you know they don’t want to
protect somewhat so I’m gonna read it and change the subscription on it that’s
one of the my next things to go off and try personally I’m really looking
forward to the day that all my screens of my life wherever I am that’s why I
like the assistant and it’s true if Alexa too but the assistant is not in
your home device that’s your interaction device to the assistant which is an
agent out there in the cloud and that’s the right sort of model I want the
assistant to be wherever I am on whatever screen is near me I want my
main TV to come up when I’m looking for products because I want to really see
that image well and play the videos or whatever informational videos up there
so – it’s a matter of trying to work out however how do i cross sessions across
devices well there’s api’s for that at the
moment but they’re not perfect yet they’re getting better they’re learning
they get feedback and I keep iterating on all this technology so I think it
really is the beginning of all these a lot of these technologies and people
are going to learn things like that and you know I could well believe that you
know next time I talk to Google home if I program an upright I’ll turn my TV on
and I’ll bring up my history of different sessions and so I can do my
history that way because voice is not perfect for everything voice is not
great for great big long lists it’s good for a conversation it’s good for and no
they’re not particularly good conversations at the moment but trying
to get to that next stage everybody’s working on these problems and they’re
going to get better and better and better as they understand and so they
remember context and so forth you know that but why shouldn’t it remember let’s
play an animal game well I haven’t actually tried it know will the device
come back and say oh you tried a game this game before do you want to try that
one again and yeah this more and more these things remember the more and more
context they have that that’s where things gonna go and now Phil talks about
this on future commerce getting a cross plug a little bit there a little bit he
talks a lot about all of these things so people are thinking about these problems
and they’ll get better and better over time and one of the scary traits was
some people predicting by 2020 people will talk more to their assistant than
their will to their spouse well maybe so but I don’t think voice is going to
become I think people can get over hyped on it do I want to use voice in a
shopping center not really I want to keep it private my search thank you very
much I don’t really want to tell everybody around me what I’m doing
headphones at least gets the feedback reduced but you know in the middle of
the office do I use assistant talking to it no mmm respect those around me but I
might use a little keyboard you know it’s it depends you’ve got to think
about how these things going to be used in the real world do I use it at home
yeah you said it all the time at home because I can call and I can talk and
I’m not interrupting anybody else so yeah sorts of things so it’s it’s not a
matter of thing assistant is voice no no there’s assistant voice is one way of
interacting with it screen is one way of into
a keyboard is one way of ring directing and all these things they do interaction
patterns they all make sense in particular contexts the assistant though
you’re its knowledge it’s building up about you so it can answer intelligently
future questions and come back and say I want to reorder something well it should
remember what you did last time so it can do a better job the next time that
memory has got to be not attached to a device which is where they’re all
heading but that’s why there’s assistant and there’s Google home Google home is
for connecting through to the assistant just as your screen can because all
these other devices and there’s gonna be a flight of devices coming out you know
yeah I think July like they’re starting to know Google might be a bit behind
them know something Alexis stuff but you know they’re gonna catch up fast Oh shot
when I saw the adoption numbers like these devices seem to be selling like
crazy business let’s trying to look at the adoption rate of mobile phones
I haven’t found an official report but it seems to me that these voice devices
are getting adopted much faster than mobile yeah yeah I saw that as well I
think I saw recently that Google home either has more market share than Alexa
or growing fast or something like that it was something that was kind of
surprising to me as you know somebody that has mostly just used you know the
former but yeah I think it’s somehow outpaced it wonderful um yeah with the
with the voice app designed so one of the things I noticed in your post was
you’re talking about sort of thinking about how to design you know these
interaction flows within voice apps and you I think you mentioned dialogue flow
as one of the tools and how it lets you map different phrases and things intense
to actions and it made me think about I had messed around with like a Magento
bot back a little while back and was just thinking through it and done some
reading on it and it seems like like they’re like our tools that don’t exist
yet to design interaction flows for voice apps like in the way that we have
well-defined patterns how to design web apps and there’s tools
for prototyping and mocking things up and like those tools for developing
voice interfaces are still probably early stage because it’s like well you
can map multiple intents to one action but then what about order of events you
know what if you want certain things to happen earlier in the conversation and
other things later and how do you map all that stuff out yes I just believe
like in ten years time they’ll look back at how you define an app at the moment
just laughs yes what you really want is to represent concepts and I don’t want
to worry about grammar or all that sort of stuff you should understand the
natural language processing you should understand the context you should
understand all that I’m just giving you when they want to do something or other
I will give you the implementation to go and do that thing you should understand
why do I have to tell you how I do I have to train you how to say to invoke
something other maybe it’s a little bit too extreme but at the moment it very
much is you give it a series of training phrases different wordings and it does
do natural language processing across it so it will understand things other than
what you just typed in but it uses those phrases to work out that that training
set to work out okay these sorts of sentences mean dis intent and the intent
is sort of like oh that’s where you get into the programming here’s an
enumerated value there’s 12 intense and so there is a question then of well do a
flow chart and every flow through the chart is where I I’ve now got two
choices the user can say well that’s not how we normally talk so that might be a
way of navigating through but it’s not like 220 question games at any time you
should be able to say start again and so there is a little bit of context support
in dialogue flow but I just really wonder it feels more when you’re writing
the program like it should be remembering context it should be
remembering information you’ve given it so far and
well you should be able to jump anywhere around at any time because people do
just change your topic so it’s a nice mug you got there for example holding it
up with a bit of an image on this great change context in the middle of a
conversation right and sometimes context is critical and you have to remember
what was said before other times you switch topics and you kind of know that
the topic got switched even though it wasn’t stated explicitly there’s so many
things that happen in natural language conversation what I was trying to design
the the bot like there would be you know initially it was just like question
answer question answer and then you’d realize they’re like these three-step
questions and you just go to yourself there’s I don’t even know how to – I
think people are thinking about that a lot and that’s where you need the
platforms to go off and solve those problems so today there are tools you
can put something together in the future I’m sure it’s going to be better that
it’ll more intelligently and that’s why I like competition in the market because
it helps drive everybody forward so you know if if Google was the only one doing
an or Amazon was the only one doing this sort of stuff don’t be sad I’m happy
that they’re pushing each other now Siri Cortana
they’re all pushing forward and I think that’s helping push the whole space for
it so I’m sure it’s going to get better and better and better
fun times yeah it’s like I don’t want to really understand natural language
processing thank you very much I just type in some phrases use different ways
play episode 1 episode 1 please show me episode 1 how does it know that playing
show mean the same thing because in some contexts it does sometimes it doesn’t
that’s why you gotta teach us of phrases so that it can get the idea of the right
terminology to use enjoy see verse 1 do I say show one do I say series 1 episode
2 there’s so many different ways of saying something you just got to give it
enough hints so it’s most likely to get it right and then you need to test test
test to make sure it really does pick up things and try it with other people
because I say things why as you didn’t expect
yeah I remember talking to a Russian guy and I was talking about
the word hard and he just didn’t get it and it was you know no offense he just
didn’t his English wasn’t perfect and it turned out if it just into were
difficult oh yeah I understand that one yeah it was like a rock no solid I don’t
know he’s translating it into another language and so people use words in
different ways and how do you get that all working well fund a whole whole heap
of things coming down the line yeah one of the other things I thought was are
the other things in your posts I thought was interesting in the in the category
of machine learning was the talk that you had seen on how machine learning is
is used to manage large catalogs of products and now for example that
something as simple as a color like if I’m searching for blue dresses and
there’s a dress which is you know called baby powders the name of the color and I
guess they’re having machine learning algorithms you you throw a product image
at it and it gives you a bunch of attributes that you can then Matt back
on to the catalog Google vision stuff they I haven’t had a home page like I
knew nothing about it I went to I did a Google search for Google Cloud vision
found the page and you can drop an image there he dropped the image there it came
back with the categorization information that’s how hard it was it was just it
just I was trucked how easy it was like so you can get all this category
category data it made a guess of I think what I threw a dress at it and I think
it came up with some guesses about the style of the dress as well as the colors
and all this sort of stuff and sometimes it got it wrong so it’s not what I’d
show a user but behind the scenes if you’re trying to do find similar
products you know feed that into a suggested products know the carousel
down there and so one of the things I think that’s not gonna change is
invoices are not going away orders are not going away receipts are not going
away there’s some basic concepts of concept and I’m not going away
but optimization or doing a better job behind the scenes
of all these things yeah machine learning is becoming a lot more
accessible I thought that wow that was going to be so hard to do what somebody
solved it said she trivial to do yeah that’s sort of side of things and so it
opens up lots more possibilities of doing a better job or making better
experiences because of it and you know I was thinking parsing natural language
text to work at a smart query to do a query that that should be a lot easier
than the vision recognition shouldn’t it and then this was no losing recognition
was trivial because somebody’s built at all and already done a lot of this work
and people are thinking about the problem a lot yeah did you find it I did
so I found it and then I uploaded I grabbed one of the the first image I
found for a carved case which is a mobile phone case I uploaded it it’s
like the back of a it’s like the back of a phone case and I uploaded it and it
tagged mobile phone case 88% mobile phone accessories telephony would mobile
phone and case so that is just yes not bad at all that’s and so there’s labels
there’s web web entities product design there’s properties gives you the
dominant colors at the the hex codes that’s wild that’s really cool
raises interesting things like how do you manage your catalog well you’ve got
manually created catalogs but you know maybe you want a more dynamic concept of
the catalog that’s personalized to the user so you don’t express it as a
catalog but you just as they navigate around as they look at things you start
trying to guide them through so that it suggests categories based on products
they’ve looked at know would you want evening dressed or afternoon dress well
that’s if they’re looking at it or is it are they more inches in color its
there’s no shortage of work to do it’s all a matter of trying to work out
what’s most important for you yeah yeah I got a question that I want to tie into
a one of the other broader topics that you
mentioned which the question is what are the two or three biggest upcoming or new
google plays that the developer community should be paying attention to
besides PW a and a MP question from Joel and then maybe as a way to answer that I
know that you talked about how you kind of audited all of the different Google
products and services and found maybe fifty to seventy-five percent of them
impact Commerce in some way so maybe what are some of the things that you
know maybe developers aren’t looking at obviously a MP is the big focus for you
at the moment we’ll try to get as much feedback on that as we can but any other
services or products that you know could be used in interesting ways that people
maybe aren’t paying attention to so if I Yammer off the ones I know of so amp is
about speed of page load lighthouse they’ve greatly simplified using that
tool now you can do an audit of a site work out what slow and just get it
faster regardless no and it can be as simple as optimizing images PWA it gives
really great rich experiences no these are a new technology coming out well is
there’s new ways of using some of these technologies there’s things like web
packaging but it’s not here yet so if you’re talking about trying to actually
if you’re thinking about the future will hey there’s a lot more out there if
you’re thinking about what’s practical today amp and PWA are still major topics
and we just know it takes a while to get them out there and it’s all about
building good rich engaging experiences for people that’s the whole goal of it
you know if people build a PWA site and they could deliver great results
fantastic the voice is the assistant one very interested in the Merchant Center I
was very happy to see that there’s really one main way to get product
information up and lots of different teams and then tapping into it so you
don’t have to worry about all of the different things but there’s lots going
on in the maps area so a lot of these products are the ones you know of AR and
V are very interesting areas IR I think is going to have a lot of applicability
doing a lot of work with web with AR and VR that’s the web X our standards and I
think that’s got a lot of future in it as well and the reason there is the
thing that interests me there is I don’t have to have custom apps to get an
experience as they get better and better and moving it into the web browser well
like now I’ve got this open web this open ecosystem and I can draw on my
content together more it’s a bit airy-fairy but now having to build an
Android app N and I are so it’s a bit of a fag I’d rather just build one thank
you very much what’s it what’s a fag Oh pain in the
neck okay that’s an Australian term right anyway it’s fine I do it was it
Australia Day yeah the pussy and the VR well VR it gives you a really immersive
experience but it’s sort of like you’ve got to go through a fair bit of effort
to get there so it’s got to be a real value add to me for that experience to
make it worthwhile I’m not going to just whip out my phone do something and put
it away I’ve got to get our goggles and heads there and make sure I’m in a safe
surrounding and so forth so if you want to a deep deep rich experience it’s
great but the assets still costs a fair bit to actually go off a build so it’s
still an expensive thing you know but people are getting better at it and like
do some of the cute ones you know an hour experience so you can try a shoe
out by pointing it in my camera at my foot and see what it looks like on my
own foot it’s cool and that sort of experiences with phones do I think
glasses and stuff will take off yeah I do think eventually but we haven’t got
the hardware there and there are real hardware challenges to get supported a
know do I want to wear magic like goggles I think look ugly so some of
those ones a bit further off and so it really depends on people’s appetite
getting data so other things can process it important getting
systems built to be important and useful and practical I
gotta be a little bit careful about other ones I sort of talk about because
if they’re not public yet I’m not meant to be talking about them
severe enough but I really do believe that while you’ve got all these cool
technologies are there more technologies coming down the road to sort of say oh
amp is so yesterday no there’s a lot of commitment behind app but it’s gonna be
an ongoing commitment behind app I think Google has learnt to change a whole web
ecosystem to get them to move forward takes long-term plans it’s just reality
okay so no not going off and dropping things if we get feedback that this is
crap and doesn’t work great and maybe we didn’t communicate the long-term plans
for amp as well initially and so people thought they’re just trying to suck the
whole web into Google actually it was the exact opposite the whole goal is to
make the web faster so people can stay out there and the web Google’s got a lot
out of the web Google wants to put more into the web but it likes the web it
wants to encourage it it likes competition Google is not trying to
dominate and take over absolutely everything competition is good at I
would drive things forward you know we use it web browser browsers to keep
moving along and know and everybody gets a better experience as a result right
who’s trying to take over web browsers would be a different strategy there you
go is it trying to cut out all all other
web innovation no it’s not but we’re trying to work out how do you solve
problems an app is a practical solution today that gives you better results
today it gives people a taste of what’s possible to say okay these problems are
worth solving and are worth adopting so it’s a whole lot of story that or we
visited a when when you mentioned the the long-term plans for amp and I think
you had said earlier something to the effect of like the long term plan is for
you to not need amp for amp to sort of go away I didn’t want to pry too much
because I wasn’t sure if it was a bird and so will Google drop out well it’s an
open source project number once the source code is always going to be
available it is just code it is not proprietary code it is actually a
separate project that Google is the major contributor to it has got a
community over it they do do pull requests and all that sort of stuff that
goes on Google is the people of putting staffing full-time resourcing into it
and so you know there’s no point in pretending otherwise but it is an open
source project it’s it’s on amp was a dam project up org it’s not on Google
calm people do contribute people do develop new widgets and go through a
review process that gets incorporated and that will continue so it’s not
that’s never going to go away and apps solve certain problems that if you want
to have easier development on a fast site without having to be having a team
of JavaScript experts amp is a useful technology for that but there are
certain sorts of goals that if your goal is to get into search we don’t want app
to be your only choice we want it to be one choice but we want to say look if
you don’t want to use amp because you’ve got to some other cool technology has
come up great we make that possible but here are the guidelines to do it within
if you want to get a really good optimized search experience not because
we want to be nasty or we want to force you in our ways but because we got to
preserve privacy we’ve got to guarantee it’s fast we’ve got an it’s those
guarantees that that’s what we’re after and the only way to do that at the
moment is hey they’re built something concrete they’ve learnt more great let’s
push it out into web standards and it’s already been announced already trying to
do it and not saying anything new but that’s that’s the ultimate goal is how
do you generalize these things to allow innovation and try and do all these
sorts of things am i spokesperson for Google well partly
yes and I’m just repeating what people are telling me am i expert on every
single project no I’m not I might have a couple of areas and what I’m saying just
know be aware and I’ve been there a couple of months it’s not like I know
everything about Google in a short period of time yeah
but I certainly know the attitude especially in my group my group success
is if the open web succeeds that is my specifics group’s mission Wow
not out there to try and get people off the open web but I’m trying to make the
open web a better place for everybody don’t my gold teams
okay ours our objectives and key results it’s about making the web place a better
place for everyone and so why work with platforms Hey lots of people are on
platforms it’s one way to get more adoption of these technologies if you
get into a platform everybody using the platform just gets it for free cool and
that’s part of the reason for using platforms but not everybody uses it they
build custom things as well okay well we need to talk to those people as well and
we’ll talk to as many as people as we can afford to because we only got so
many people it’s funny everybody says our Google’s got so much resources and
internally it’s so like oh wow I just need people it says many people yeah
yeah so much you could be doing that’s a problem and it’s sort of like the how to
focus and which ones to pick so yeah it’s a long yammering answer so I would
be saying things like web packaging and feature policies are the ones that the
next iteration but it’s not app is going away it’s not and those technologies are
not solving all the problems that app souls they’re just opening it up to say
if you want to get into search well okay we can start using some of these
technologies there’s another way to get into search but if you want a simple
toolkit and not learn JavaScript but still get a degree of interaction up and
going hey amps a good solution for you yeah yeah Wow no no I really this is
this is awesome I I really enjoyed it I’ve definitely learned a lot I think
that I’m sure other people will too and gonna really try to get you some of that
some of that feedback that you’re that you’re looking for here so well this is
a lot of fun I really appreciate you taking some time to chat and are there
any anything else that that we didn’t get to that you wanted
mentioned before we wrap up if there was I can always talk another time ok sounds
like a plan standing invitation well how can how can
people best find you on the web to get in touch or engaged also I can’t so I
for Alan Kay ent 99 on Twitter so people can sort of mention me there my blog is
Alan Kent dot me that’s a LAN ke n T dot me so feel free to reach out to me there
and I that’s where I do most my blogging asana that’s probably the easiest first
levels of contact awesome well thanks so much and thanks everybody for tuning in
we will see you again tomorrow

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