Here are some things I learned while being an official blogger to the Grace Hopper Conference.
- 1. Charge your lap top (if you bring one) any chance you get. There’s nothing more irritating than having to sit in the back of a good panel because you need to be plugged in.
2. Ask presenters for their slides. I have had trouble finding the slides of the presentations (“It’s not Magic: I can prove it” and others) I really enjoyed and wished I gotten her to email them to me so I could either post them (if a given presenter was ok with it) or just write a more factual post.
3. Introduce yourself to your panel. This isn’t a hard and fast rule, but I found a lot of presenters didn’t expect to be assigned a blogger and I wish I’d had some business card or something to hand them so they could look up my post–more readers = good.
- 1. Stress about getting perfect posts. So much will happen so fast that it may be hard to do perfect justice to every panel you cover. Post during your time slot, and come back to it later if you have time. I know I will be revisiting More Active Girls In Computing (MAGIC) and the Making the Future Web Accessible to People with Disabilities panels in future posts–because they were so cool I found I had trouble posting about them.2. Over schedule yourself. I marked out my entire day in my Conference booklet in the morning if I could and then chose to skip some unassigned panels to make sure I had enough time to breathe, eat and post. Being stressed and sleep deprived is no way to experience such a wonderful conference.3. Be overly structured. If you’re fascinated by a panelist, stay afterwards to answer questions. I did this in a lot of my panels and learned a lot. The panelist may be able to answer questions which are not easily stated in 10 words or less in front of a microphone.
And the most important thing of all…have fun! Sit and watch other women be smart, intense, geeky, normal and exited. Come next year!
Leaders of the future will have to be visionary and be able to bring people in – real communicators. These are things that women bring to leadership and executive positions, and it’s going to be incredibly valuable and incredibly in demand.” Anita Borg
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