Newsletter #51: What Tech Will and Won’t Build

Hello Recompilers,

The Recompiler is happy to be a community sponsor for Devopsdays Portland 2018 happening from September 11-13. This year we’ll be hearing from Recompiler contributor Heidi Waterhouse on Disaster Resilience The Waffle House Way: Flat-Tops, Feature Flags, And Finite State Machines — along with many other great talks. You can get 20% off your registration with the code RECOMPILERFRIENDS. We also have one ticket to give away to a reader. Enter by August 20.

If you missed our Kickstarter for Community Event Planning, Second Edition there’s still time to pre-order (and even get a sticker pack).


The Four Thieves Vinegar Collective is an anarchist group producing DIY pharmaceuticals to fight against big pharma. So far they’ve managed to synthesize five different drugs, including distributing information about how to make and refill your own epi-pen.
(Daniel Oberhaus for Motherboard)

Microsoft employees presented their chief executive with a demand to end the company’s contract with ICE. More than 300,000 people, including 500 Microsoft employees, have signed the petition to end the contract. The #techwontbuildit campaign appears to continue to gain steam as workers realize their power.
(Sheera Frenkel for The New York Times)

The ethics of coding and the art of weaving come together in this beautiful, thoughtful piece. “Even if our present feels more and more like a dystopia we can’t wake up from, I stubbornly believe in joyful rebellion and collaboration within it, weird deviations from a path we can’t seem to stop running down to our mutual doom.”
(Arabelle Sicardi for SSense)


Too Embarrassed to Ask: Disinformation on social media: How screwed are we?
Kara Swisher interviews the Renée DiResta, the head of policy at Data for Democracy, about how to confront the ways in which disinformation is spread on social media.

Conference Talk of the Week:

This talk is part of our “Favorite Talks” YouTube Playlist. Check it out and subscribe! 

Shaving my head made me a better programmer

Alex Qin at Ela Conf 2016, discussing prejudices and assumptions in the workplace.


Call for proposals for Open until July 30.

The Digital Impact Alliance is open for grant proposals until July 31. This grant is for open source projects serving the international development and humanitarian sectors.

North Bay Python is looking for proposals, open until August 10.

There’s no call for proposals for REST Fest East 2018, because everyone who comes gets to speak. The unconference is September 26 + 27-29th in Greenville, SC.

!!Con West is looking for volunteers to help organize their first event, which will be in Santa Cruz in early 2019.

Upcoming Events:

All conferences have been screened and abide by clear and strict Codes of Conduct.

August 1-4, 2018: NYC

The Diana Initiative 2018
August 9-10, Las Vegas, NV

Write the Docs + Open Help Cincinnati
August 18-22, 2018, Cincinnati, OH

GopherCon 2018
August 27-30, 2018: Denver, CO

Affect Conf
September 6-7, 2018: Portland, OR

DevOps Days Portland 
September 11-13, 2018, Portland, OR

REST Fest East 2018
September 26 + 27-29th, Greenville, SC

State of the Map US
October 5-7, Detroit, MI

Do you know an upcoming conference or CFP that should be included? Email leads to

Margaret Killjoy (@magpiekilljoy) is an author, activist, and musician based in Appalachia. Her most recent book series is the Danielle Cain novella series, which starts with The Lamb Will Slaughter the Lion.

Image credit: Photo by University of Michigan School for Environment and Sustainability (CC By 2.0)

This week’s newsletter is sponsored by Julie Pagano. Thank you for your support!