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!!Con 2024

August 24-25, 2024

The joy, excitement, and surprise of computing

Call for talk proposals

The call for talk proposals is now closed. Thank you all for your submissions! For posterity, we’ve left the original call for talk proposals below.

Hi! !!Con is back for our twelfth and final celebration of the joy, excitement, and surprise of computing, and we want you to submit a talk* proposal. The submission deadline is Tuesday, May 28th. You can submit more than one proposal.

This will be the last !!Con, so if you have a talk you’ve always wanted to give, now’s the time! If you already know the drill for !!Con talk*s, get to it, and send us your !!Coniest ideas – and if you don’t, read on!

Submit a !!Con talk* proposal now!  In a goofy WordArt text layout.

Since its launch in 2014, !!Con talks have featured everything from glowing mushrooms to game theory; from machine knitting to Pokémon; from live coding on an Apple II to queer feminist cyberpunk manifestos. We’ve had speakers who are programmers, poets, scientists, students, and more!

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!

What do we mean by talk* with an asterisk? We have an expansive definition of what we consider a “talk” for !!Con’s 10-minute slots! Send us plays about the joy of computing, musical numbers about a bug you found, magic shows using strace. Whatever you want to do with a ten-minute slot, we’d love to hear about it. Of course, we’re looking forward to seeing good old-fashioned talk proposals as well.

We would especially like to hear from you if:

  • you submitted a talk* proposal in the past 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 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”.

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:

  • Now: Call for talk proposals opens.
  • May 28: Talk proposal submission deadline.
  • June 24: Notification of talk acceptance.
  • July 1: Deadline for speakers to confirm their participation.
  • TBD in June/July: Conference registration opens.
  • TBD in June/July: Public announcement of full speaker list.
  • August 24-25: !!Con!

Speaker travel funding

!!Con will be held at UC Santa Cruz, in Santa Cruz, CA, in an outdoor venue. We offer financial assistance for travel expenses (stuff like flights, trains, lodging, and meals while traveling) for speakers traveling from outside of the Santa Cruz area. 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.

We expect speakers to present in-person. However, if any accepted speaker anticipates difficulties (visa or health reasons, for example) 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.

Speaker honorarium

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

Health Precautions and Virtual Attendance

We’re committed to balancing the health of our attendees with the desire to gather in-person. To this end, we’re taking advantage of the mild and beautiful Santa Cruz summer weather to hold the conference outdoors, at the courtyard of the Baskin School of Engineering at UC Santa Cruz!

Additionally, we will be creating a comprehensive COVID safety plan for the event. Stay tuned for the details, and feel free to contact us in the meantime.

While we expect that most talks will be in person, for speakers who cannot attend the conference in person, we would be happy to discuss possibilities for presenting your talk virtually!


!!Con is committed to being an conference available to everyone. Your talk will be captioned live by a professional stenographer. If you need other assistance in presenting at !!Con, please don’t hesitate to let us know what we can do to make your speaking arrangement comfortable.

Do it!

Submit a !!Con talk* proposal now!  In a goofy WordArt text layout.

You can submit your talk* by using this form. Thanks for submitting to !!Con! We’re so excited to read your idea(s)!!!