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!!Con West 2020

Feb 29 – Mar 1, 2020 in Santa Cruz, CA

the joy, excitement, and surprise of computing

Give a talk at !!Con West!

Hi! !!Con West is back for our second year of celebrating the joy, excitement, and surprise of computing, and we want you to submit a talk proposal. The submission deadline is Sunday, December 8.

Since its launch five years ago, !!Con talks have featured everything from glowing mushrooms to control theory; from machine knitting to gliders; from live coding on an Apple II to queer feminist cyberpunk manifestos. We’ve had speakers who are programmers, poets, scientists, students, and more! We’re excited to bring this magic to the West Coast for the second time in 2020!

What’s an idea that delights you? Did you learn something surprising recently? Is there a tool you love that you’ve been telling everyone about? Did you do something with computers that seems impossible or amazing or just really fun? Please take this call for talk proposals as an invitation to meditate on what you find exciting and surprising and delightful about programming and computing, and then submit a talk about one of those things! The only requirements are that your talk:

  • be computing-related!
  • be about something you think is interesting and cool!
  • have at least one exclamation mark in the title!

We would especially like to hear from you if:

  • you submitted a talk proposal to a previous !!Con that was rejected (we’ve had to reject so many talk proposals we loved).
  • you’ve never spoken at a tech conference. Some of our favorite !!Con talks have been from first-time speakers.
  • you find that people like you are underrepresented at programming conferences. We’re committed to doing work to make !!Con West a good experience for you. See our code of conduct.

All talks will be ten minutes long. Ten minutes isn’t much time, so think carefully about the scope of your talk and be clear in the timeline about how you plan to spend the time. A single, focused idea is best – go for “here’s my favorite assembly instruction” rather than “here’s an overview of how assembly works”.

The submission deadline is Sunday, December 8th. We’ll accept as many of your amazing talks as we can. You can submit more than one talk proposal.

Proposals will be anonymized to avoid bias. Although we ask for your name, email address, and so on in the proposal submission form, only one or two organizers who serve as anonymizers will actually see this information, and they won’t review your proposal. The rest of the organizing team will review your proposal without knowing who you are.

Submit your proposal today!

Important dates

  • November 10: Call for talk proposals opens.
  • December 8: Talk proposal submission deadline.
  • December 22: Notification of talk acceptance.
  • December 29: Deadline for speakers to confirm their participation.
  • TBD: Conference registration opens.
  • TBD: Public announcement of full speaker list.
  • TBD: Public announcement of detailed schedule.
  • February 29-March 1: !!Con West!

Speaker travel funding

!!Con West will be held at UC Santa Cruz in Santa Cruz, California, USA. We offer financial assistance for travel expenses (stuff like flights, trains, lodging, and meals while traveling) for outside-of-Santa Cruz speakers. If you’re not from the Santa Cruz area and you want to request funding, please fill out the relevant section of the proposal submission form.

Because submissions are reviewed anonymously, requesting financial assistance will not affect a proposal’s chances of acceptance.

Speaker honorarium

Preparing an amazing conference talk is hard work. To show our appreciation, we’re paying all our speakers a $256 (US) honorarium.

A note about travel

We welcome all speakers, regardless of nationality. We generally expect that accepted speakers who confirm their participation will travel to Santa Cruz to present their talk in person. However, if any accepted speaker anticipates visa-related difficulties in traveling to the conference, we will make arrangements to enable remote participation, and not require them to attend the conference in order to present their talk. In such a case contact us for further guidance.

Thanks for submitting to !!Con West!