Technology and Kindness at Open Source and Feelings 2016

Open Source and Feelings was one of my favorite conferences last year, so I was eager when they asked if The Recompiler might be interested in doing something for the event. We ended up with a small zine, including some sample work from Issue 4 plus interviews with the speakers. This was a lot of fun to work on and I hope we’ll be able to participate again in some way next year.

Nicole Sanchez started the event off with a great overview of what diversity and inclusion really need to mean in practice. She also started a Pokémon trend that continued through the event.

Aside from the Pokémon, she shared this chart I’m going to be referring back to any time I need to explain why many things that pass as diversity don’t create inclusion:

A theme I heard throughout the event was how inclusion is something we practice: we do our best, we make mistakes, we try to do better. Empathy is a key part of this practice.

Jennifer Tu shared a very relevant case study: how do you collect gender information in a context where it really does matter, in this case medical care? I really appreciated hearing how they were able to approach it as a series of small steps, and connected with people both inside their organization and in affected communities that might interact with the medical practice.

Another talk I attended had a number of actionable points for building better teams: Shawn Rider with Work is Not a Dare. I’ve seen many of the things mentioned happen in teams I’ve been on!

I’m looking forward to seeing this year’s talk videos posted, because I wasn’t able to attend the second day. I encourage you to keep an eye out for this — the event was full of essential and useful ideas.