September 4, 2015 in Tallinn, Estonia



September 4, 2015 in Tallinn, Estonia


is the first conference in the region for developers, designers and digital media agent provocateurs to provide fresh inspiration for kicking ass on the web.


Our programme covers a number of different subjects, and presents an opportunity to join with fellow smart folks to network, discuss and renew your passion for making the web even more awesome. And we’ll round it all off with a truly epic evening.

Book now to be a part of the first, but certainly not last, REFRESH!


REFRESH is a conference, but also an opportunity, to hit Fn+F5 and gain a new perspective on everything front end on the web. With fascinating speakers ready to impart their wisdom and demonstrations from great minds based right here in Tallinn this is not to be missed.

REFRESH is sponsored by





Harsh Sinha

Harsh Sinha is VP of Engineering at TransferWise, the international money transfer platform. Prior to TransferWise he was Director of Product at PayPal, leading the product strategy and development of PayPal's mobile apps and mobile SDKs enabling third parties to build mobile wallet experiences using PayPal's platform. Harsh also led eBay's Local initiatives as Director of Engineering where he owned the vision and development of eBay's Click & Collect platform globally and launched eBay's same day delivery service. Harsh is an advisor to and an investor in early stage start ups.

Topic: Scaling a Global Product Via Full Stack Product Thinking

Harsh will share his learnings from building and scaling products worldwide. He will talk about how he realized product focused engineering teams are a unique competitive advantage and how global products need the local flavor to succeed.

Liana Lo

Born and raised in San Francisco, Liana's desire to connect with people around the world has since brought her to live and work in Phoenix, Beijing, Taipei, and Jakarta. She now works as a full-stack software developer at Prezi's Budapest office. In addition to her technical disposition, Liana has recurring interests in 2D and 3D visual art, music, dance, foreign language, and international culture.

Topic: Cross-functional collaboration - Delivering a feature from conception to deployment

At Prezi we have product teams that include one product owner, one designer, one UX researcher, one data analyst, and several engineers. I will share how we align our tasks and what tools we use to deliver new value to our users every week.

Cristiano Betta

Senior Developer Advocate at Braintree, event organiser at Geeks of London. Board certified geek. Loves to code in Ruby, Rails & JS. Appreciates web standards, continuous integration, distributed version control systems, test driven development, and coffee.

Topic: This strange planet earth: Payments are cultural

Did you know that almost nobody pays with a credit card in Germany? They don't even own one. Did you realise that one of the latest innovations in Russia is a way to get cash easier? And the cash comes out of slot machines! Do you know what countries have their own cryptocurrencies? And how much do they contribute to their GDP? In this exhilarating talk Cristiano Betta, Senior Developer Advocate at PayPal/Braintree takes us on a whirlwind tour of this strange planet we call earth. With 7 billion people we’ve come close to developing a similar amount of ways to pay each other based on our cultural, historical and sometimes comical preferences

Silke Van den Broeck

Designer and developer of the mobile web, Silke is part of the development team at neoScores, the new iTunes for sheet music. She has a thing for music, photography, reading and yoga, and spends her free time as a jazz, pop, and rock vocalist.

Topic: Modular development, the neoScores way

Take a dive into some of the problems the neoScores dev team ran into while building an offline first, modular web application, and get inspired by their solutions.

Nilan Peiris

Nilan Peiris is VP Growth at TransferWise, the international money transfer platform. Prior to TransferWise, Nilan was VP Growth at HouseTrip, scaling the company to become the leading European market for holiday rentals. He’s also worked as Chief Marketing Technology Officer at Holiday Extras, where he was responsible for all areas of technology, marketing and customer acquisition. Nilan also advises a number of early stage startups on growth and getting to traction.

Topic: Growth at TransferWise or How to Grow Without Spending a Ton on Marketing

Nilan will talk about how evangelism can be the biggest driver of growth and how running an organization of autonomous independent teams has enabled to scale TransferWise at supersonic speeds.

Varya Stepanova

Varya Stepanova is a front end developer originally from the North of Russia currently based in Helsinki, Finland. She mostly specialises in open source tools, UI components and libraries as well as in automation the development processes, frequently speaks at meetups and conferences and authors frontend articles. Currently, in Helsinki-based company “SC5 Online” Varya takes part in developing the style guide generators and other development tools as well as introduces and supports the style-guide-driven process and component-focused development in a big Finnish telecommunication company Elisa. She has also a huge BEM experience behind, thanks to her years in Russian search giant Yandex.

Topic: Driving the Style Guide Driven Development

Living style guides as a representation of UI are very popular in modern frontend development. And the next step further is a style-guide-driven development of UI components which means that your living UI book becomes your development playground. In such a process we developers change our mindsets from developing web as pages towards developing systems built of independent components. With this talk I am going to share experience of SC5 Online on this style-guide-driven way which we got with our own open source style guide generator.

Julie Ng

Julie is a freelance developer and consultant, working with companies to apply responsive design and best practices to their websites and email communications. She specializes in developing frontend architectures and reusable components for Email. She is also author of Antwort, a popular open-source responsive Email template. She is also co-founder of Refresh Munich, a community for web designers and developers and co-organizes the UX Munich conference. When not coding, Julie is also an avid climber and barefoot runner.

Topic: Mastering E-Mail & the Internet's Cockroach

E-Mail persists after many decades and will continue to survive Chat, Skype, etc. - just as roaches have survived the atomic bomb. Despite being a pest, E-Mail is also an effective marketing channel and the most personal communication you have with your users and customers.
You've survived Gmail's spam filter. Now let's make sure you also survive mobile devices with responsive E-Mail HTML. It's not as difficult as you think. Let's examine how developers have solved common problems with tried and true techniques for designing and developing bulletproof E-Mails.

Ben Dixon

Ben is a Rails and Android Developer with a secret taste for Devops. He recently co-founded Make It With Code, an online platform to teach professionals in none technical roles to use Ruby in their day to day work. He's the author of "Reliably Deploying Rails Applications" and has spoken at Railsconf on both web application deployment and Docker integration. A Travel & Co-working addict he likes to try and write code from a different country every month.

Topic: What I got wrong when someone asked me to deploy a WebApp

"Could you just setup a server for that." It's only a matter of time before any developer, front end or back end hears those words. It's actually a lot easier than it sounds but most people make the same few mistakes. Learn what these mistakes are and how to avoid them.

Tajo Oja

As the Lead Designer at Fraktal, Tajo pushes pixels, yells at clients, then makes up with them again and somehow creates awesome award-winning designs along the way. He also can't shut up about that one time he was a DJ and had a cool party for a few years. Now he collects other DJs' annual mixtapes on This Mixtape Is So.... Which is not nearly as cool as the DJ thing but way cooler than web design.

Topic: Bad Boys of Design

You've all heard the age-old mantra of "Good design saves the world". I'll show you how that hippy talk will get you nowhere and how to lie, cheat and steal your way to the top. With the help of dark patterns, deceptive design and other deliciously evil tricks.




Our host Louis Zezeran

Australian Louis Zezeran is known in Estonia as being a member of Stand Up group “Comedy Estonia” and also the face of the recent “Work in Estonia” campaign. In addition to this, Louis also has a first class honors degree in Computer Science from the University of Newcastle in Australia and spent the first 6 years of his professional life working as an IT consultant specializing in enterprise integration. Understanding instinctually that he was better at talking than at actually doing projects, he became an IT trainer in Europe and one of his first jobs was to instruct some of the team who built the original core of the Estonian “X-Tee” system. So if your prescriptions don’t make it from the doctor to the pharmacy on time, you can come and ask him why. Using his unique mix of technical and entertainment ability, Louis has advised many local startups on delivering better presentations through his work with Stoneful content agency.

Friday 4th of September

9:00 Registration, breakfast
9:35 Opening words
9:45 Harsh Sinha
Scaling a Global Product Via Full Stack Product Thinking
10:20 Cristiano Betta
This strange planet earth: Payments are cultural
10:55 Coffee break
11:25 Nilan Peiris
Growth at TransferWise or How to Grow Without Spending a Ton on Marketing
12:00 Lunch
13:00 Liana Lo
Cross-functional collaboration - Delivering a feature from conception to deployment
13:35 Ben Dixon
What I got wrong when someone asked me to deploy a WebApp
14:10 Coffee break
14:40 Silke Van den Broeck
Modular development, the neoScores way
15:15 Varvara Stepanova
Driving the Style Guide Driven Development
15:50 Coffee break
16:20 Julie Ng
Mastering E-Mail & the Internet's Cockroach
16:55 Tajo Oja
Bad Boys of Design
17:30 Closing words
19:00-00:00 Post conference party at Kultuurikatel




Ticket types

  • The normal ticket costs 110

  • Limited amount of early bird tickets cost 80 and are available until 10th of August or until they are sold out.

  • Student discount tickets cost 50 . Be prepared to show a document that verifies your student status at the door.

What's included

Tickets include full access to the entire conference and post-conference festivities, as well as free breakfast and lunch. 

The night’s festivities will include a brilliant street-food style buffet, a quiz based around the day’s themes and talks and a great party with a lively band and an excellent DJ.





Põhja pst 27a
Tallinn, Estonia

The venue

The conference takes place at Kultuurikatel (Tallinn Creative Hub).


How to get there?

Tallinn is the capital of Estonia and the venue is in the city center, so getting here is quite easy.

By plane you arrive to the Tallinn Airport (Lennart Meri Tallinn Airport), which is close to the city center.

The port is in the city center and almost next to the venue. There are direct ferry connections from Tallinn to Helsinki and Stockholm.

From city center it's just about 10 minute walk to Kultuurikatel so there is not much need to use public transportation to get to the conference.


The building was previously Tallinn City Central Power Station, which began operating in 1913 and closed in 1979. It can be said that only with the founding of the power station did the use of electric power become common and electricity an everyday perk in Tallinn.

The former power station’s first serious encounter with art occurred in 1977 when Andrei Tarkovsky used the complex as a set for his cult film ‘Stalker’. The scene of Stalker entering the zone was filmed at the gate of the Creative Hub. While shooting the film, the letters U and N (short for United Nations) were painted on the power station’s chimney and remain visible to this day.





It's demo time!

Show us what you’ve got! We’re offering a chance to do a live 10 minute demo during our session breaks at a dedicated area where you can tell us about your product and the technical challenges you overcame to realize it.


We only have limited slots, so send us a description of what your demo would be at refresh@transferwise.com and we’ll choose the best for the conference. Getting the demo slot also guarantees you a free pass to the whole conference so you can be part of the whole fun!

Demos by




the team behind refresh

Jordan Valdma

Takes responsibility and makes sure things are happening

Janika Liiv

Makes things happen

Katrin Dedova

Makes every detail perfect