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Category: Speaking

Design for DigiGirlz

On Wednesday, I had the unique experience of teaching 110 high school girls an intro to interaction design workshop. Officially entitled “Making the World Easier With Interaction Design”, this was a course I built from scratch after offering to teach the subject at Microsoft’s annual Digigirlz Tech Camp. It’s a free weeklong program open to high school girls. They spend the week at Microsoft, hearing speakers, seeing demos, taking tours, and doing hands-on workshops like mine. Back when I debuted my Computer Engineer Barbie talk at Interaction ’11, I mentioned that my eventual goal was to craft a curriculum for…

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Stage Brain

A few weeks ago, I walked onto the Intiman Playhouse stage to emcee TheatreSports for the first time at that location. (I’ve performed there several times, but hadn’t MCed yet.) I had done all of the requisite emcee preparation – sound check with the crew, etc – and with my whistle and stopwatch around my neck, I was ready to go. Except that for some reason, I hadn’t figured on the lights being QUITE so bright. When you’re performing, there is no need for direct eye contact with the audience except when getting suggestions – and usually at that point…

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“Women in Technology” Panel now available online!

If you have been following my adventures and are interested in listening to the panel I moderated at TechEd 2011 this past Tuesday, look no further. The slides and audio are now available for streaming or for download in video or audio form. Enjoy, and please do leave comments and questions if they come up! The embed is being a bit wonky at the moment, so the talk can be viewed at this link: http://channel9.msdn.com/Events/TechEd/NorthAmerica/2011/WIT01

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Networking Isn’t A Dirty Word

On Tuesday I had the distinct pleasure of moderating the well-attended Women in Technology panel at Microsoft TechEd 2011. The topic was networking (well, the topic was a long run-on sentence that boiled down to “networking”), and our panelists – Mary Jo Foley, Amy Barzdukas, and Betsy Speare – shared their own personal tips for networking before we all took a number of questions from the audience. Many of the tips centered around mentoring and sponsorship relationships, as well as the use of social media as an important part of one’s personal outreach and branding. When authoring the slides, I made…

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In the Q&A Moment

As I’ve begun presenting my talk to multiple groups of people, I’ve found the Q&A sessions particularly interesting. I think that 10 years ago, before my improv training and before my experience with Microsoft’s old-school Precision Questioning tactics, such discussions would have been a nightmare for me. It’s been very enlightening to see what perspective time brings. Some folks have been extremely gracious – making sure to start out with compliments or thanks in an effort to convey their appreciation for the messages in the talk. Which is AWESOME. I often want to give them a hug before answering, which would…

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