CyborgCamp is Back! Join us in Portland, Oregon on November 3rd, 2018!

CyborgCamp is back! Last held at MIT Media Lab in 2014, CyborgCamp is returning to Portland, Oregon this November at the Pacific Northwest College of Art!

We’d like to thank the 12 local speakers and performers helping bring CyborgCamp to life!

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1. Stephanie Mendoza, VR art, development and activism (morning speaker)
2. Shashi Jain, 3D printing (morning speaker)
3. Reese Bowes, experimental DJing, sound design, and percussion (pre-party performance)
4. Erin Cooper, experimental music (pre-party performance)
5. Myles de Bastion, deaf musician and interaction designer (morning speaker and performer)
6. Deborah Heath, Anthropology professor, cyborg anthropology midwife, biodynamic food researcher (morning speaker)
7. Dave Moiser, artist 3D scanning (pre-party and CyborgCamp daytime 3D scanning)
8. Jeff Brown, food activist, robotic growing enthusiast, restaurateur, food sponsor (morning speaker)
9. Body Shame, solo experimental music performer (pre-party performer)
10. Amber Case, CyborgCamp founder, cyborg anthropologist and author of Calm Technology (morning speaker)
11. EddyEddyEddy, experimental music duo (pre-party performance)
12. Klint Finley, writer, journalist, and game designer (morning speaker)

On the fence about going? There are still a few tickets left! Can’t go? Consider sponsoring low income attendees by buying a couple of tickets! The cost is only $20, and you’ll be helping someone out!

What’s a CyborgCamp?
CyborgCamps are small, in-depth unconferences about the future of the relationship between humans and technology. Attendees discuss a variety of topics such as the futures of identity, privacy, surveillance, hardware to wetware, drones, 3D printing, cyberpunk, human augmentation, constructed reality, the second self, ethics, robot rights, sexuality, urban design, and anthropology. Topics are discussed the morning of the conference and scheduled into the conference grid by attendees themselves, making it a DIY conference experience.

What’s an Unconference?
An unconference is a conference organized by the attendees on the day of the event. Although CyborgCamp will have some morning speeches to kick off the day’s events, most of the day will be made up by talks and breakout sessions organized by attendees. The unconference model allows one to really determine what they’re interested in learning, instead of being tied to a very stringent conference agenda. Each CyborgCamp has its own mix of topics created by what the attendees want to discuss. All CyborgCamps follow a Code of Conduct.

CyborgCamps are Small
CyborgCamps generally have less than 100 attendees, making it easier to have more in depth discussions with people across different fields. The small format increases the chances getting to really know your fellow attendees.

CyborgCamps are Diverse
Every CyborgCamp welcome people from different backgrounds, including social, business, academic and trade-related. Just as cyborg studies sit at the crossroads of multiple academic disciplines, we like to invite people at the crossroads of different disciplines and boundaries as well.

CyborgCamps are Designed by Attendees
At CyborgCamp, attendees make the conference. Some attendees come prepared with ideas of what they want to talk about, and others come to listen and learn. Some attendees have relevant experience and prepared talks, and others just have a woolly idea needing discussion. At the start of the conference, attendees write their ideas up on a board and the conference begins!

How can I attend?
Clear your calendar for November 3rd, 2018 and register for CyborgCamp here!

The conference will be held at PNCA on Saturday, November 3rd, 2018 from 9am-6pm. On November, 2nd, we’ll have a pre-party with live tech performances, 3D scanning and other treats from 7-10pm at a secret, undisclosed location. Anyone interested in making a post-conference zine is welcome to join the CyborgCamp writing party on Sunday, November 4th!

Get your ticket!
CyborgCamp has always been an affordable conference. We use sponsor funds and a low ticket price to provide meals, entertainment and unconference sessions to everyone who attends. Tickets are $20 to encourage people of multiple backgrounds, especially students. If you’d like to help sponsor the conference, simply buy a bundle of tickets, and we’ll use the funds to provide scholarships to those who can’t afford the ticket price.
https://www.eventbrite.com/e/cyborgcamp-2018-tickets-50544840980

Website
Feel free to visit CyborgCamp to learn more! We’ll be announcing a full lineup of morning speakers and performances soon. Tickets usually sell out, so get yours asap! http://cyborgcamp.com

Sponsorships
We’re looking for a handful of sponsors to provide sign language, closed captioning, and other accessibility support for the conference. The best thing about sponsoring? It’s tax deductible! Please contact caseorganic at gmail dot com with any inquiries! You’ll get a small sponsor packet and a non-profit donation instructions!

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Welcome to 2018!

2017 was a long and unpredictable year. It started with the death of my father, a hero of mine and an electronics and audio pioneer. He was only 56, and it will be difficult to move on without his voice. He started his decline in mid-2016, followed by many hurried visits last year between trips.

I’m glad I got to spend so much time with him before he left this planet.

Dad and I

This year was enormous for Calm Technology. I was on tour for more time than expected. The 100,000 miles I traveled led me to new places, people and ideas, and I’m excited to explore more of them in the next year.

Calm Technology Book Tour 2017

This year’s Calm Technology Book Tour: 103,281 miles travelled!

What’s Next?
I continue to be an affiliate at the Berkman Klein Center for Internet & Society, and a fellow at MIT Media Lab’s Center for Civic Media. I look forward to returning to Boston this January to participate more fully in efforts around AI, ethics, IoT and calm design.

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An enormous audience for Mind the Product London!

New Year’s Resolutions
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1. Write more. Write one short essay a month on topics related to AI, ethics, IoT and Calm Tech.

2. Release Designing Products with Sound. I’m working with my editor to improve my writing skills, and I’m making incremental progress. My second O’Reilly book, Designing Products with Sound will come out by the end of 2018, and I’m looking forward to that.

3. Prepare to write a trade paperback. I’ve had many requests for a trade paperback book that provides a wider look at how technology is affecting culture.

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Audience at Beaverton High School in Oregon.

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Getting my cousins hooked on synthesizers and sound-making apps during a family visit in August.

4. Visit family more often.

Family is incredibly important. I feel that a lot of my life after college was spend in survival mode after graduating in the recession. This year I plan on spending more time with my cousins, my Aunts and my dad’s brother. My family is fairly small, and every moment counts.

5. Read more books!

My favorite book this year was Colour: Travels Through the Paintbox by Victoria Finlay. It followed the author through the origins of many different colors, and I encourage anyone from any background to take a look at it.

My second favorite was Writing Tools, a book I’m still working through.

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Researcher Divine Maloney and I this summer in Portland, Oregon before he left to pursue a PhD in HCI!

6. Finish a research paper on the phenomenology of AR and VR.

I’ve been a big fan of VR for some time. I’ve been researching the history of it as a hobby for the last 8 years. I worked on this paper with Divine Maloney this summer and am looking forward to publishing it by the end of next year!

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Divine and I with the 2017 Harvard Berkman Klein Center Summer Interns in Cambridge, MA.

7. Participate more in the local community and help others.

Although I was fearful to do it, one thing I’ve done this year is to sign up as a Blood Marrow Donor at Be the Match.

The process is not as difficult as one would expect, and you’d be seriously saving someone’s life if you are a match. All you need is a cheek swab from a kit provided in the mail, and then you wait for a call.

Sign up to be a Blood Marrow Donor!

Sign up to be a Blood Marrow Donor!

Squicky about needles? Consider that matches are rare. Every donor has around a 1 in 500 chance of matching with someone in the US. And “only thirty percent of donations involve actual bone marrow. (The ones that do are mostly for children, who seem to do better with traditional bone marrow transplantation.) Seventy percent of the time, being a “bone marrow donor” is only a tad more complicated than donating blood.” Most of the time, the process can be completed in three hours.

If you want to learn more about the process, there’s some good information here: https://io9.gizmodo.com/bone-marrow-donation-is-nothing-like-i-thought-it-was-1676114500 There’s also a neat (and tear-inducing) Radiolab episode about this you can listen to right now!

I’m definitely fearful to do this, but if I end up being a match, then I’m willing to deal with a tiny bit of pain to help someone else out.

Thank you
I’d like to thank everyone for their support and comfort during this difficult year. I couldn’t have done it without you. Many of you were proactive in helping me reorganize and help with my family. My family is small and I cherish everyone in it.

Thanks also to new friends and faces, art groups and music, and all of the creative things that help to balance out the seriousness. These are crucial and necessary, and we’ll need more of them as we head into the information age.

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Vice Media crew filmed part of a new show with me at Xhurch in Portland, Oregon.

What are your goals for 2018? Best of luck to everyone in this new year!

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A glacier climb during an AI retreat in Norway this September.

Panel on Cyborgs at U of O’s What is Media 2: What is Life?

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University of Oregon in Portland • April 6-8, 2017 • whatis.uoregon.edu

On Saturday, April 8, 2:45-4:00pm I’ll be chairing a session on Cyborgs.

Chair: Amber Case, Fellow, Berkman Klein Center for Internet and Society, Harvard University/Visiting Researcher, MIT Center for Civic Media.

  • Caroline Alphin, ASPECT-Alliance for Social, Political, Ethical and Cultural Thought, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University
    “Cyborg Neoliberalism: Practicing Neoliberal Subjectivity through the Fitness Tracker”
  • Justin Barnard, English, State University of New York (SUNY) at Fredonia
    “Ex Humana: How Technology is Changing What it Means to be Human”
  • Patrick Dunham, Comparative Literature, University of Oregon
    “The Eradication of Reality in the Age of the Simulation”
  • Lucy Benjamin, Media Studies/Film Studies, University of Amsterdam, Netherlands
    “Loving Life: Romantic Encounters of the Modern Cyborg”

About
The 7th annual What is…conference will take place April 6-8 at the White Stag complex in Portland. The conference engages communication, media, and nature by examining everyday life—our lifestyles and lifeworks—emphasizing the environments we live in. The event emphasizes how communication is instrumental in and for living systems. What is life and how is life mediated? It builds on last year’s conference-experience, What is Media? (2016), expanding a transdisciplinary notion of medium/media with special attention to its material, historical, and ecological ramifications.

The event marks the second collaboration with scholars from the natural sciences (physical and life sciences) and the arts. Panels and roundtables will present a wide range of topics including but not limited to: media literacies, complexity, ethics, ecocriticism, data, food, health, economics, rights/privacy, audiences, platforms and living technologies.

The conference-experience will continue the focus on an integrated view of communication for the 21st century, and plant the seeds for deeper investigations into complexity in systems, environmental and ecological approaches. In acknowledging art/science, technology, and environments/nature, communication is at an emergent crossroads.

IA Summit Keynote on Calm Technology in Vancouver, BC – March 22-26, 2017

IA Summit Vancouver BC 2017

I’m excited to announce that I’ll be one of two keynotes at the IA Summit in Vancouver, BC, a fantastic conference running March 22-26, 2017!

Calm Technology and the Future of the Interface
How can you design technology that becomes a part of a user’s life and not a distraction from it? This practical book explores the concept of calm technology, a method for smoothly capturing a user’s attention only when necessary, while calmly remaining in the background most of the time. You’ll learn how to design products that work well, launch well, are easy to support, easy to use, and remain unobtrusive.

About IA Summit 2017
IA Summit Vancouver BC 2017 Originally conceived as a one-off get-together in 2000, the IA Summit quickly became established as the go-to event for those of us who want to make information easier to find, understand, and share. We’ve grown in our ambition, toured North America, and continued to figure out how to build bridges of understanding which span seas of information.

The IA Summit exists to promote discourse and offer practical advice about the strategic and intentional design of information environments. Recognized globally as the peak of information architecture learning, the IA Summit is a wellspring of knowledge for every information professional.

You can follow along at @IAsummit and #ias17!

Read more and sign up for the IA Summit here.

See you there!

Speaking at {dive} Conference in Rennes, France on July 7, 2016!

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100 attendees. 18 hours.  Infinite possibilities.  On July 7, 2016, 100 people will meet in Rennes, France, a beautiful city nestled in the northwest corner of the Brittany region for a one-of-kind conference. Below are some pictures of the conference venue:

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{dive} attendees—which will be capped at 100 for a more intimate, immersive environment—will have the opportunity to participate in a full day of stimulating, interactive sessions and discover fresh ideas and insights from some of the leading strategists, entrepreneurs and innovators in the world. More about {dive} from UXMag.

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I strongly encourage you to sign up if getting to Rennes, France is an exciting idea to you!

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You can learn much more about {dive} here!