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!!Con 2024

August 24-25, 2024

The joy, excitement, and surprise of computing


Keynote Talks

Bruce Waggoner

Bruce Waggoner - Saving Voyager 1!

Both of the 47 year old Voyager spacecraft are currently in interstellar space and returning their most important data set; in-situ measurements of the magnetic field, plasma and dust beyond the Heliopause. In late 2023, Voyager 1 lost all downlink telemetry and the flight team had essentially no visibility into the state of the spacecraft which is over 15 billion miles from the Earth. This talk will detail how the flight team diagnosed the problem, and formulated a recovery plan to patch the Flight Data System flight software.

I am the Mission Assurance Manager at NASA Jet Propulsion Lab/Caltech. I graduated from the University of Nebraska with a BS in Physics and Astronomy. I have worked at JPL for 39 years supporting dozens of Earth orbiting and deep space missions. I also volunteer as a gymnastics coach and assist teaching girls engineering and science at a local high school.

Dawn Walker

Dawn Walker

Dawn Walker is a researcher and designer interested in how computing intersects with just transitions. She has started a tech worker co-op, participated in community-led archiving of environmental and climate data, and schemed about mesh networking (to name a few things) in her attempts to create alternatives to existing ways of building and stewarding technology. Since 2017 she has co-organized Our Networks, a conference about the past, present, and future of building our own network infrastructures hosted in Toronto and Vancouver.

Lightning Talks

Devon Tao

Devon Tao

It’s alive…. IT’S ALIVE!!! Braitenberg Vehicles! (Have you ever seen an AI like this??!!)

“AI has been getting more and more complex. Surrounded by chess robots, self-driving cars, and now Large Language Models, we begin to ask ourselves: what does it take for a machine to behave like a human? Does it take millions of parameters? Mountains of training data?

None of the above! Introducing… Braitenberg Vehicles! These are simple, human-like robots that are made only of a couple of sensors and motors. In this talk, I will convince you that these simple components are enough to show human-like behavior, and we will get to see some Braitenberg Vehicles in action using a Braitenberg Vehicles Simulator I made!”

Devon is a student at Harvey Mudd College studying computer science and mathematics. Outside of computer science, they also like to write musical theater!

Julian Squires

Julian Squires

Backtraces in the Mirror: Stealing the Secrets of Elves and Dwarves to Perform Mad Science!!

While writing an unobtrusive memory profiler, I discovered I needed to reconstruct a running program’s stack the wrong way around! I thought this was impossible, and it turns out I was wrong! So join me to learn about how stack unwinding works (and when it doesn’t!), how to use ELF and DWARF information all wrong(!), working with uncertain information (and why!), and the value of doing things that “can’t possibly work”!!

Julian Squires is a lifelong programmer and eccentric layabout. He previously spoke at !!Con 2017 about “the Emoji that Killed Chrome” (!!).

More speakers will be posted soon when they confirm their talks!

Perhaps you would also be interested in our 2022, 2021, 2020, 2019, 2018, 2017, 2016, 2015, or 2014 speakers?