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Shaving My Head Made Me A Better Programmer

How do perceptions and stereotypes affect those in the programming community? This talk tells the true story of my physical transformation, and the surprising and drastic ways in which it affected how I was perceived and treated as a programmer. This new perspective allowed me to take a hard look at our community, and how it can at times be less welcoming and inclusive than we all intend it to be. This talk also covers the effects of unconscious bias, micro-aggressions, and stereotype threat within our community, and how to make engineering teams and our entire field more inclusive to all, and thusly more successful.


Alex Qin

Software Engineer, Educator and Founder of Code Cooperative

Alex Qin is a Brooklyn based software engineer and educator. She cares deeply about access to computer science education, and about leveraging technology to create positive social change. She works at Skillshare, where she leads an engineering team, and co-organizes Codeshare, an inclusive and...

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St James, 4th flr.


Softskills: Essential Skills for Developers


CultureHigh Performing TeamsDiversity in Teams


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Online safety has become a huge problem in the world of oversharing. Real name policies, automatic geolocation tracking, and photo tagging increase user adoption rates, but these features can be quickly abused by bad actors. This talk will discuss how to apply a "consent filter" to product...

Danielle Leong

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As software architects, we often focus on the technical side to building software including key platform or design decisions, or finding reasons to use the latest and great technologies. We forget that software is built by people, and without considering how people work together, architectural...

Patrick Kua

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Lending Privilege

Diversity and inclusion have become hot topics in technology, but you may not know how you can make a difference. This talk will help you understand that, no matter your background, you have privilege and can lend it to marginalized groups in tech.

Anjuan Simmons

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Creating Space To Be Awesome

Bringing agile approaches into how we manage people and lead teams can have wonderful, far-reaching impact. How do we get the most out of these new ways of working and also ensure that we create an inclusive environment where all types of people can be successful? In this session we’ll take a...

Meri Williams

CTO who understands the science around helping people do their best

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Softskills Open Space

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