Big news coming. Save the date 8 March 2014

Thursday, October 10th, 2013

Happy spring to those of you in oz. My favorite time of year! Love all the flowers blooming and the birds singing in the early morning. I find it is a very inspiring time!

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I’ve been laying low working on a new BIG idea! I will announce more next week. But I can say, save the date 8th March because that is the day that all will be revealed …. Stay tuned!

Go bananas! Judging the Young ICT Explorers award

Thursday, August 15th, 2013

 

Last weekend I was excited to be invited to be a judge in the Young ICT Explorers awards for the 2nd time. It’s a fun day where school kids get to show off their technology creations to professionals in the ICT industry. I met many inspiring young people, and ate lollies and cupcakes for lunch! I judged the year 10-12 category, and had fun getting demos from all the young ones!

My fave of the day was a game that was developed by three 10 year olds – the controllers for the game were bananas! Yes, actual bananas! So very creative and cool. First I had to get wired up, connecting myself to the game via an electronic circuit on my shirt. 

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Then I received the important instructions on how to play using a different banana for up, down, left and right.Image

It is actually harder than it looks! Yes the sharks ate me :)Image

My new engineer friend Prachi also had a a go, so much fun :)

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More pics of the day here

Want to go to Google? Apply for the Anita Borg Memorial Scholarship: Asia-Pacific for 2013 is now open.

Monday, May 27th, 2013

I highly encourage you to consider applying. I was lucky enough to be a finalist a few years ago, one of the best tech experiences I’ve had. So much fun!

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Eligibility requirements: 

-Be a female student enrolled in full-time undergraduate or postgraduate study for the 2013-2014 academic year.

-Be enrolled at a University in any of the following countries: Korea, Japan, Southeast Asia, Australia, New Zealand and India. Citizens, permanent residents, and international students are eligible to apply.

-Be studying Computer Science, Software Engineering, or a closely related technical field.

-Maintain an excellent academic record.

The closing deadline is May 31, 2013.

For more information, please visit http://www.google.com.au/anitaborg/apac/

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Do you have a tech project at school? Enter now!

Monday, May 27th, 2013

I’m a judge again in this year’s Young ICT Explorers Australia Competition

Show us your best project in Information & Communication Technology

Register your School before the 31st May 2013 

 

Programming Challenge for Girls (PC4G) Press Release

Monday, May 20th, 2013

Tech girls are chic are proud to support the Programming Challenge for Girls (PC4G)!

When:  Thursday, June 20th, 2013

Time: 10.30am-4pm

Location: On-campus at Mountain Creek State High School, Sunshine Coast

Overview:

Encouraging girls to consider careers in IT is the aim behind a girls-only activity being held at Mountain Creek State High School (MCSHS). MCSHS is delivering a Programming Challenge For Girls for 70 of their year 9 students. The day-long immersion experience will be held on Thursday 20th June on-campus at MCSHS on the Sunshine Coast.

Programming Challenge for Girls (PC4G) is a workshop designed to introduce programming to Year 9 girls who have never programmed before. By the end of the day, students will have learned the basics of object-oriented programming through a hands-on tutorial and challenge.

Sponsors of the day include Google and Tech Girls are Chic – both organisations keen to support the promotion of a career path in IT for the girls. Cate Huston, Google engineer, will be flying in for the day and will be keynote speaker to the girls. The day is also supported by staff at UQ and QUT, with academic staff and their students keen to travel to the Sunshine Coast school to assist on the day and work with the girls in learning the programming involved, and speaking to them about their own experiences and the possibilities available to the students in the years to come in IT.

For further information, please contact the school directly via:

Graeme Breen
ICT Curriculum Coordinator
Ph: +61 7 5457 8354
eMail: gbree3@eq.edu.au

TGAC @ UTS University of Technology Sydney

Tuesday, April 16th, 2013

On the 5th of April, the Women in Engineering & IT (WiE&IT) Program of the University of Technology, Sydney ran their bi-annual interactive seminar for students from Years 8-12. School students had the opportunity to meet undergraduates and professionals in engineering and IT, and explore the possibilities of engineering and IT as study options and careers. I was happy to supply books to the 198 girls that attended from all over NSW. Thanks to Laura at UTS for her great support of the pink book! :) Go girls.

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Pics here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/utswomeninengineeringandit/sets/72157633219925118/

Happy IWD & 5th bday of Tech girls are chic!

Tuesday, March 12th, 2013

So how did you spend IWD this year? I hope you did something fabulous to celebrate all of the wonderful things we have to be thankful for. I had lunch with my female colleagues at Uni, and we had chocolate brownies to mark the occasion!

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I love IWD because it is also the birthday of the pink book. 5 years! Wow! I sold 100 copies of the book on the day, it still has a life of its own it seems. I’m planning to do a new edition soon, with the hope of launching it on a future IWD! I’m now looking for sponsors so if you know of anyone who might be interested please let me know. I’m proud to say that nearly 20 000 books have been distributed across Australia and the world in the past five years. No small achievement! Thanks to all of you that made it possible.

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I want to share a couple of inspiring TED videos to mark this special day. The first is from Sheryl Sandberg, the COO of Facebook. The main message is “don’t be ashamed to ask for help!” I know that I’m guilty of this, I often take on too much then struggle through getting things done but don’t want to bother others by asking for help. But I’m now working on changing this. I’m also keen to read Sheryl’s new book “lean in” – which I’ve read good reviews from Wired etc..

The other I want to share is by a musician called Amanda Palmer. You might not know her music but It doesn’t matter, this is still worth watching. Amanda is incredibly inspiring in encouraging us to put ourselves out there, being strong in our beliefs, and living your dreams. Similar to Sheryl’s video, The art of asking, or “putting yourself out there” bit really hits home with a recent experience of mine.

I make jewellery with semi-precious stones. I’ve done this for quite a few years and I love it. It helped me to get through my PhD (using the other side of my brain and doing something quite monotonous was good (and still is) good therapy). So I became quite addicted to playing with those beautiful stones, so much so that I now sell my jewellery. So on the weekend I spent an entire day sitting in my local shopping centre attempting to sell my stuff. This required me to really put myself out there, giving people free reign to come and inspect my creations, maybe liking them but possibly hating them. Kinda like Amanda in the video allowing the crowd to draw on her (but not so physically personal). I have to admit, this scared me a lot! I’ve been selling my jewellery in a shop for some time but it is a whole different experience for me to put my face behind it and welcome feedback. Luckily the feedback was pretty good, I sold a bit and one woman said she wanted to buy the whole table of jewels! So I made it through without too many scars, and I may have even raised my confidence a little. This is good because I’m just about to start selling my jewels in one of the biggest shopping centers on the planet, Garden City! From the end of March, check out the MyCube store (a great concept) and the Madly Creative cube inside, I’d love to hear what YOU think of my creations. Time for me to go and follow my dreams. Ciao!
Jx

Wikipedia’s strategy to diversify its editors – women needed!

Sunday, February 17th, 2013

This article provides a little more info on the Wikipedia post I made. So girls, can you see yourself as a wikipedian? Your skills are needed. Go for it!

http://www.abc.net.au/radionational/programs/futuretense/wikipedia/4520478

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[image source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Australia%5D

Is Wikipedia your best friend?

Wednesday, February 13th, 2013

Last night I had the absolute pleasure to sit in on a presentation by Sue Gardner, the brilliant woman who is CEO of Wikimedia, the organisation that runs Wikipedia among other things. The presentation/interview will be aired on ABC radio tomorrow.

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I admit I’m not a huge Wikipedia user but I do find some comfort in knowing there is information on just about everything just a few clicks away. Like Sue, I grew up with a set of encyclopaedia brittanica volumes that were my first point of call for school assignments and for making my journey through the awesome game ‘where in the world is Carmen Sandiego’ (I was always looking up flags, unusual animals and geography info). Now such hard copy books are a rarity, so luckily we have Wikipedia.

What inspired me most about Sue’s presentation was her confidence (strong, subtle and not brutish), her candidness on controversial topics (such as the SOPA/PIPA 24hr shutdown) and she answered all questions with enthusiasm. Her social conscious is undeniable. She talked with great affection for the ‘wikipedians’ – the creators of the content we know and love on Wikipedia. She also talked openly about the ongoing internal debates they have about censoring content related to pornography, violent crimes/offenders, and minority views.

One important point she made is that women only make up 10% of wikipedians (content creators), and much of the content comes from white guys in affluent countries (my translation :)) interesting how these numbers seem to reflect the representation of those in the ICT industry. She says they are working on strategies for increasing diversity among Wikipedians, much like we are in the wider tech industry.

what would we do without the www…..?

Friday, February 8th, 2013

drumroll…..http://adroitresearch.com.au/ – my new website! I’ve been building my own consulting business for a few years but I’ve never had a web presence for it, or even a business name…so I’m really proud of myself for firstly building up enough of a business to warrant a website, and also for finally launching such a great site! 

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It was also very timely to launch my website this week as I had the absolute pleasure to sit in on a presentation by the founder of the WWW – Sir Tim Berners-Lee. I read Sir Tim’s book a few years ago and loved reading about the history of a technology that most of us take for granted when we use it every single day. So it was certainly an awesome experience to see him in the flesh and hear about his views on open data and the future of information management. Very very inspiring!! I feel I owe Sir TBL a lot…..

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