There's been past chatter on the outreach limitations inherent to "insider" tech conferences. In an effort to help drive a diversity of voices, I'm reposting excerpt information from the open calls that I recently received from O'Reilly Media seeking both proposals and speakers for the ETech and ETel conferences. (Disclosure note: Omidyar Network is an investor in O'Reilly AlphaTech Ventures, a related entity, and I serve on its Technology Advisory Board.)
So: if you'd like to see your gender, industry sector, or market better-represented, speak up and make a submission. The bootstrap is yours to tug upon, and the deadlines are fast approaching.
ETel 2007 Call for Plenary Session/Workshop Proposals
Deadline: September 11, 2006 (Note: another e-mail cited September 26...but when in doubt, obey the earlier deadline.) ETel's audience is primarily "technologists, CTOs, chief scientists, researchers, programmers, hackers, business developers, and entrepreneurs."
More from the program co-chairs: "If you have a stake in the future of telephony, this is your chance to speak out, share your ideas, and make a presentation to an audience that will include the leading technologists, scientists, researchers, programmers, hackers, business developers, and entrepreneurs in the industry. Passionate about what you do? Then we want to hear from you."
Topics being tracked:
- Open Source/Open Telephony. What are the breakthroughs in open source platforms and hardware?
- Wireless Mobility and Mobile Telephony. What does the future hold for net connectivity?
- Intersection of VoIP Telephony and Web Services. As costs head toward zero, where will businesses seek to provide value?
- Infrastructure. What are the innovations we can expect to see from GSM, CDMA, POTS, wifi, wimax, Mesh Networks, PicoCells, and usage of unlicensed spectrum?
- Voice as Data. How will demand for new services be balanced by privacy concerns, and compliance regulations?
- Culture and Connectivity. How are activists, community groups, and technology evangelists reaching out to underserved communities in the developing world? What can we learn from online gamers, flash mobs, and velvet revolutions?
- Usability and Experience. What happens to your business when your product is your interface?
- Business Models. Can the telcos reinvent themselves? Will legislation protecting intellectual property become a barrier to innovation?
- Early Warning Signals. What new technology, operating system or source code is about to go mainstream?
If you want to be considered for participation, more information and the proposal submission form are here. If you have ideas for speakers/topics that would make this event more valuable for you, suggestions can be sent here.
ETech 2007 Call for Plenary Session/Workshop Proposals
Deadline: October 9, 2006.
More from the co-chairs: "The next ETech will focus on magic and the sufficiently advanced technology behind it. The Call for Participation is now open and we are inviting technologists and strategists, CTOs and chief scientists, researchers, programmers, hackers, and standards workers, business developers, and entrepreneurs to lead conference sessions and tutorials at ETech 2007...ETech taps into the creative spirit of all attendees, sparking provocative encounters and productive inspiration that continue long after the conference ends. Even if you're not one for speaking or leading a tutorial, use this opportunity to suggest speakers, topics, or technologies you think we should explore or wish you knew more about."
Initial topic suggestions include both new/big technologies, and the "judicious selection and integration of existing subtle technologies":
- Bionic systems
- Data stores
If you want to be considered for participation, or have ideas for speakers/topics, more information and the proposal submission form are here.
Get up off of the couch and join in the conversation!