Submit Your Talk for Ignite Seattle 13

Our next Ignite Seattle will be February 10th, 2011 and it will be a part of the 2nd Annual Global Ignite Week. Last year, Global Ignite Week was held in 65 cities on 6 continents and featured over 500 speakers. Submissions are now open and we’d love to have you speak at our next Ignite. Submissions are due by January 10th, although earlier submissions are encouraged!

If you’d like to spread the word about open submissions through Social Media, you can use this link:

We’ve heard some people say they always want to come to the event, but they forget as the date approaches. If this sounds like you, take a second and sign up for our Ignite Seattle Newsletter, and we’ll make sure you don’t forget. 🙂

Ignite Seattle 12 is Tonight!

Tell your friends! Ignite Seattle 12 is tonight! 7pm at the King Cat Theater. It’s $5 at the door, and there’s a bar. Be sure to get there on time, as there’s a great team-based ice-breaker game planned before the talks.

In case you missed the speaker announcement, here are the speakers and their topics (in no particular order):

Scott Berkun (berkun) How to write well, instantly, ever time
There is talk of the death of writing, but writing is everywhere: in email, Facebook, text messages, we write now more than ever. It’s true much of it is bad, but we’ve mostly sucked at writing for as long as we’ve had words. Berkun, author of a popular blog and three bestselling books, will explain all you need to know about writing essays, books, blogs and everything else, in 5 short minutes.

Emily Chen (tenshiemi) Paring Life: Have Less, Live More
Last year I did an end of the year apartment purge of everything I considered junk. When I returned home from Value Village I was shocked by how much stuff I still had. I experienced a flash of inspiration and decided to commit myself to getting rid of something every day for a year. Every item is posted on my blog and free to any requester. I’m now over two hundred days in and I would like to share what I’ve learned along the way and strategies for optimizing your possessions for happier living.

Gregory Heller (gregoryheller) SCRUM Project Management For Wedding Planning
What happens when two people with project management experience decide not to hire a wedding planner and instead run their wedding planning through a modified SCRUM project management process? Certified SCRUM master, Gregory Heller will share his experience and lessons learned. Consider this a geek’s guide to planning the perfect wedding.

Mandy Sorensen (mandercrosby) Fleas, worms, and other nasty parasites: what they are, and why should you care?
Sure you’ve got a dog or cat at home. Are you sure you don’t also have a small population of nature’s most industrious little buggers hiding in your carpet or in your yard? Odds are, you do and you just don’t know about it. What you should know about the most common creepy crawlies out there.

Phil Thompson – Chemistry of the Cocktail
The chemistry and history of the cocktail, the flip.

Buster Benson (busterbenson) Virtual goods can improve the quality of your real life experiences
I’m building a social game, Health Month ( As gamification has gained popularity, there has been a lot of discussion about whether or not points/badges/etc cheapen experience, lose value over time, or just simply ruin everything.

Alissa Mortenson (foolissa) Making Collaborative Art that Doesn’t Stuck

Adam Philipp (mypatents) How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Software Patents
Its seems there is nothing more reviled in geekdom than the software patent. It is lambasted from the left and the right from the ivory tower to the grass roots. It seems that it is singlehandedly to blame for the colossal failure of all progress in the field of computer science and stifles innovation and development of all the best products.

Beth Buelow (coachbethb) 5 Reasons Introverts Rock the Business World
The myth: Introverts are shy, socially backward and quite possibly all serial-killers-in-waiting.

The truth: Introverts are among the most famous, wealthy and successful people on the planet.

A five-minute look at what happens when introverts unleash their super-powers in the business world and beyond (and how to tell if YOU might be a member of Club Introvert).

Ellen Kowalczyk (elleliz) Got a minute?
Does your work / life balance look more like work / work / life balance? Feel like you’re constantly behind? Forget and lose track of the important things you meant to do? I’ll share a few ways to get back in control of your time and be more successful and more relaxed at the same time.

James Callan (scarequotes) Five big things grammar nazis get wrong about language
So sometimes you use “it’s” where you should’ve used “its.” Unfortunate? Yes. A sign that the sky is about to collapse all over our precious English language? Contrary to what a persnickety bunch of chicken littles would have you believe, no. Language is an art and a science, and grammar nazis need to be fiercely resisted as they browbeat us all with their ignorance of both.

Joel Grus (joelgrus) How to Be Funny
It’s easy to be popular if you’re rich, or good-looking, or good at sports. But the rest of us have to be funny if we want people to like us. Acclaimed writer, humorist, and data analyst Joel Grus has spent years of research and experimentation uncovering the basic principles of humor. In this 5-minute talk, he’ll teach you how to master these principles and make people laugh.

Karen Cheng (karenxcheng) How to Solve a Song
It’s happened to all of us – you hear a song that you don’t want to like. You try to resist, but you can’t. By the end of the song, you’re tapping your foot and singing along. Why are some songs so irresistibly catchy?

I used to think it was magic. But when I looked closer, I had an epiphany – It’s actually just math. Songs are catchy because they’re scientifically engineered to be that way. I’ll show you how.

Upcoming Tech Events in Seattle

Here are a few upcoming tech events in Seattle. If you’ve got a geek event that you think might interest the Ignite Seattle crowd, let us know!


Seattle Tech Startups
This month’s topic: Monetizing Your Product

  • Chris Hopf, Understanding Freemium – How to Create and Grow Paying Customers
  • Tony Wright, RescueTime: Making Money with a Software Startup: In the Trenches.

Next Week

Social Media Club Seattle – August 18th
From the SMC Seattle site

This month’s Social Media Club Seattle meet-up is coming up, and we hope you’ll join us on August 18th in Seattle at the HL2 offices. This month’s SMC Seattle event includes a memorable social media discussion with Brad who tweets from @Starbucks, Elliott who tweets from @AlaskaAir, and Frank who tweets from @ComcastCares. We’ll have an hour-long program and plenty of time for networking and sharing social media best practices.

Great presentations and networking for the social media set.

Gnomedex – August 20-22nd
Chris Pirillo and the Gnomedex crew put on a heck of show every year here in Seattle and this year is no exception. This year’s speakers include two Ignite alumni, Beth Goza and Amber Case (Ignite Portland) as well as Ignite founder, Bre Pettis. Other speakers include Chris Brogan, Drew Olanoff (#BlameDrewsCancer), and Mark Glaser.

Gnomedex is the premiere geek event in Seattle

Tech Calendars

Having trouble keeping up with the latest local events? Here are a few local calendars that can help keep you up to date.

Ignite 7 Submissions Are Open

Ignite Seattle 7 is happening on August 3rd and talk submissions are open. If you have a 5 minute talk that will inspire, teach or just make people think then throw your hat in the ring. We’ll take ~16 speakers (and no repeats from last time). Get your talk in by July 1st.

Submit your talk here.

We’ve already got two great speakers lined up. First, I’m happy to welcome back Rob “How To Buy A Car” Gruhl with a talk on How To Take Photographs (check out his photos on Flickr ).  Second, we’ve lined up Matthew Amster-Burton, local food writer and author of Hungry Monkey (AKA How to raise a foodie).

We had over 500 people in attendance at the last Ignite event in April, with great talks by:

If you need inspiration about “How and Why to Give an Ignite Talk,” Scott Berkun can help you out.

Ignite will be held once again at the King Cat Theater (map). We look forward to seeing you there!

Stay in the Know on Ignite Announcements

There are many ways to stay up-to-date on the newly revived Ignite Seattle.

Ignite Mailing List – We have an announcement list for keeping you uptodate. We only send out 1-2 mails per month. The content is limited to Ignite news and other similar events from the Ignite community. You can sign up here. Only Ignite organizers can send mail to this list.
IgniteSea on Twitter – If 140 character sound bites are more your speed, follow us @ignitesea.
Ignite Seattle Blog – You’re reading this post on the blog. You can also subscribe via RSS.
Local Seattle BlogsSeattlest, Seattle 2.0, The Big Blog and Techflash all let their readers know that Ignite was happening.
Ignite Site – Ignites are happening around the world every week. You can keep track of all of them (including Seattle) on the central Ignite site.

See you soon!

Ignite Seattle 6 Schedule

Ignite Seattle is this Wednesday, 4/29, at the King Cat Theatre. Ignite is free. We’ve got a great line-up of speakers. Here’s the evening’s schedule:

7PM – Doors Open

7:30 PM – Paper Tower Contest Begins – Build the tallest tower you can out of just 5 sheets of paper and tape (See Details)

8:30 – First Set of Talks
Hillel Cooperman (@hillel) – The Secret Underground World of Lego
Dawn Rutherford (@dawnoftheread) – Public Library Hacking
Roy Leban (@royleban) – Worst Case User Experience: Alzheimer’s
Shelly Farnham (@ShellyShelly) Community Genius: Leveraging Community to Increase your Creative Powers
Dominic Muren (@dmuren) – Humblefacturing a Sustainable Electronic Future
Jen Zug (@jenzug) – The Sanity Hacks of a Stay At Home Mom
Ken Beegle (@kbeegle) – Decoding Sticks and Waves
Maya Bisineer (@thinkmaya) – Geek Girl – A life Story
Scott Berkun ( How and Why to Give an Ignite Talk

9:45 PM – Second Set of Talks
Scotto Moore ( Intangible Method
Secret Guest Speaker from Ignite Portland
Mike Tykka – The Invention of the Wheel
Jason Preston (@Jasonp107) – Goodbye Tolstoy: How to say anything in 140 characters or less
Chris DiBona (@cdibona) – The Coolness of Telemedicine
Ron Burk – The Psychology of Incompetence
Katherine Hernandez (@ipodtouchgirl) – The Mac Spy
Jamie Gower – I Am %0.0002 Cyborg
Beth Goza (@bethgo) – Knitting in Code

Pre-Ignite Contest

Back when Ignite first lit up the Seattle scene, Bre Pettis used to run a pre-ignite contest just to get things warmed up. We are bringing back that tradition for the next Ignite, and everyone is invited to participate.

The game is simple, the rules are few, and it will be a contest of pure creativity and engineering prowess.  Your materials are 5 sheets of paper, a roll of tape, and a pair of scissors. Gather your team and start cutting, folding, rolling and taping until you have the tallest freestanding tower you can manage. When time is called, step away and cross your fingers!

There are only two rules:

  1. you can’t use anything other then the paper and tape provided
  2. your construction cannot be taped to the floor (or any other part of the theater for that matter)

Whichever team has the tallest structure standing when the Judges come around wins, and there will be prizes.

We will provide the tape and paper, just bring some friends and a pair of scissors (no running please). Contest will begin at 7:30  so you will have time to finish and clean up before the talks get started at 8:30.

Ignite Seattle 6 Speakers

We’ve got a bunch of great speakers this time! Check ’em out below. Ignite Seattle 6 will take place on 4/29 at the King Cat Theatre. Doors will open at 7PM and talk will start at 8:30PM. We are very grateful to be getting sponsorship from Google, Biznik, and Phinney Bischoff Design House.

Roy Leban (@royleban) – Worst Case User Experience: Alzheimer’s
When the time came to move my father-in-law into an Alzheimer’s facility, I approached the problem as I approach any technical problem — I needed to meet the needs of the user, even if he didn’t know them and couldn’t express them. I crafted an experience (a UX) for him in his new home which meets those needs and I worked to make sure that the actual move itself did the same.

Ron Burk – The Psychology of Incompetence
Why does software suck so bad? Is it possible that a lot of us really smart computer programmers are, in fact… incompetent?

Dominic Muren (@dmuren) – Humblefacturing a Sustainable Electronic Future
We geeks love our personal tech. iPhones, Kindles, and Netbooks — these are the things we are quick to buy, and quick to trade up to stay on the bleeding edge. But in our wake we leave mountains of discarded, useless, and toxic ex-electronics. But must this necessarily be the case?

Jason Preston (@Jasonp107) – Goobye Tolstoy: How to say anything in 140 characters or less
Twitter’s greatest contr. to society is: any idea can be shared in 140 chars or less-beyond that, it’s just drivel. See how & why in 5 mins.

Jamie Gower – How to Set Up a Machinima Studio for $20 (or Hamlet: Armed and Dangerous)
The startling true story of the production of the climax from Hamlet that defied sanity—staged entirely in Starcraft: Brood War, a deeply-discounted, 11-year old computer game!

Chris DiBona (@cdibona) – The Coolness of Telemedicine
Remote medicine is coming a long way. Chris will run us through the latest.

Ken Beegle (@kbeegle) – Decoding Sticks and Waves
Yesterday’s breakthrough solutions are today’s historical curiosities. Such is the case of stick charts, which were once used to navigate the Marshall Islands. By observing the waves, wind and stars, select Marshall Islanders were able to find their way across the water. In 1898, Captain Winkler of the German Navy began decoding the stick charts, allowing us to understand how and why the charts worked. Using his experiences as a lens, we can look at the maps we’re building today and ask what type of historical curiosities will they become.

Maya Bisineer (@thinkmaya) – Geek Girl – A life Story
From being a tomboy, secretly hiding away my cousin’s hot-wheels cars at 5 yrs of age all the way to imposing geekiness on my own 2 year old by refusing her pink dresses :). I WILL make a claim that we are a special breed of people that need special privileges in order to save our creed.

Dawn Rutherford (@dawnoftheread) – Public Library Hacking
Money tight? Want to save more for a rainy day? If you aren’t fully utilizing your public library, you might be wasting thousands of dollars a year!Librarian Dawn Rutherford will give you a quick trip through all your public libraries have to offer, and how to make the most of it, using tricks and tips gleaned from someone who has spent over half her life working or volunteering in them.

Mike Tykka – The Invention of the Wheel
It seems Nature has beaten man to almost every “invention” of his: Helicopters, Submarines, Electricity, Video Cameras, Supercomputers, etc. For the longest time i thought one notable exception was the wheel – seems hard to do out of flesh: think blood vessels; How do they attach? Then i started studying biochemistry and learned about proteins. Turns out nature has invented a full blown, reversible, proton driven turbine engine, many tens of thousands of which churn away in every one of the billions of cells in a human body.

Beth Goza (@bethgo) – Knitting in Code
Remember the joy of writing your first Hello World application? Do you still have a copy somewhere so you can gaze upon your coded baby steps into the world of binary goodness? In knitting, creating something beautiful is just like binary, with a series of knits and pearls you can dream up the most sophisticated of patterns. In the spirit of hi-tech meets hand-tech, I will show you how to convert your binary Hello World app into a pattern of stitches (think kint =1 pearl = 0), so that you can create, mount, frame and hang your Hello World genius for all to see.

Hillel Cooperman (@hillel) – The Secret Underground World of Lego
Get a glimpse of a thriving user generated content ecosystem that’s been around since long before the web. See an incredible example of a community, and how a large corporation has completely let go of control only to find incredible success despite and maybe because of the economic downturn.

Shelly Farnham (@ShellyShelly) Community Genius: Leveraging Community to Increase your Creative Powers
We’ve all heard that it’s a myth that creativity occurs in isolation. We’ve even heard about *group genius*, the ability for group with “flow” to create ground-breaking works of art or technology. Well, in this brief talk Shelly Farnham, social scientist and leading expert in community technologies, will take it to the next level and provide tips for how to leverage *community genius* to improve your creative powers.

Katherine Hernandez (@ipodtouchgirl) – The Mac Spy
I made a last minute decision to attend a meeting I somehow caught wind of. Assured of its importance, I flew down yet again, not even a month after MacWorld, to see what would happen at this 25 year reunion of the Berkeley Mac User Group.

Scott Berkun ( How and Why to Give an Ignite Talk
To give a good talk you want to have a story. You have to be able to frame it. If you’re going to give an Ignite talk you have to do this really, really quickly.

Scotto Moore ( Intangible Method
A digital fairy tale about a young woman who realizes that first person video footage from her own life is being posted to YouTube – before the events actually occur in real life.

Jen Zug (@jenzug) – The Sanity Hacks of a Stay At Home Mom
Drawing from her real life as a stay at home mom (as opposed to her imaginary life as a bar tender on Cape Cod), Jen Zug shares her parenting hacks to staying sane when the majority of her day is spent discussing the merits of Optimus Prime over Buzz Light Year.

Ignite Seattle Returns!

After over a year on hiatus, Ignite Seattle is back, at a new venue (thanks to the King Cat Theater) on April 29th. Same as before, we’ll have 16 speakers – talks will be limited to 5 minutes a piece each 20 slides, so that’s 15 seconds a slide. It always goes faster than you think.

Right now, we’re looking for speakers – we have a form setup for you to apply in this post below.

We’re taking talk submissions from everyone — whether this is your first time or whether you’ve done an Ignite talk before.

Topics usually tend towards web 2.0, startups, life hacks, etc., but it can really be about anything that would appeal to a roomful of tech geeks and Internet junkies. Some of the favorite talks from last year included Hacking the Technical Interview and A Pseudoscience Guide to Geek Dating. You can view all of the recent talks on the Ignite Seattle YouTube channel.

We’re taking submissions until April 16th, and they’re accepted on a rolling basis, so submit early. We look forward to seeing you on the 29th!

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