Call for Presenters

Aaron Turner CascadiaJS 2019 speaker

Thank you for your interest in speaking at CascadiaJS 🌲. Here are a few important notes before you continue:

Talks are 25 minutes long.

CFP closes on March 20, 2020.

We cover all travel expenses and arrange for lodging at Sunriver Resort.

We provide support and mentorship for new speakers.

Please review the information below before you submit to the CFP.

Who we are looking for

This CFP is open to both experienced speakers and folks who have never given a big conference talk. The criteria we will use for evaluating submissions will be the same, and no added weight will be awarded to folks just because they've spoken before. Some of the best talks given at past CascadiaJS events have come from folks giving their first conference talk.

EVERY DEVELOPER HAS A STORY: about how they got into this industry, how their team solved a problem, how they used the open web to create an amazing experience. We hope that you’ll tell us about yours!

Representation in our community

We are also looking for stories from folks who belong to underrepresented groups (URMs) in our industry. Seattle (and the Pacific Northwest) has a bad reputation for being pretty homogenous, and we want to create an environment for all kinds of speakers, from all kinds of backgrounds, because we believe that makes a difference in shifting the inclusivity of our industry forward.

Code of conduct

Please review our Code of Conduct. Everyone who participates in our conference agrees to the enforcement of our CoC, and includes our friends, speakers, staff, sponsors, and attendees.

What we take care of

If we accept your proposal to speak, the following items are taken care of by us:

One ticket to the conference

Lodging for 3 nights at Sunriver Resort

Travel to/from Sunriver

A few surprises

Topics

There are a few things we are NOT looking for:

  • Product pitches (How to use product X)
  • Intro talks (Getting started with framework Y)
  • Negative talks (All the things I hate about Z)
  • Comparing frameworks (Why I think E is better than F)

What we are looking for:

A great talk tells a story -- it can address issues that developers struggle with, break down and explain complicated topics, and cover new ground in web technology. Below are a few topics that we think are interesting, but it’s more about you and the story you want to tell.

  • Hardware (hacking, IoT)
  • Art (visuals, music, interactive)
  • Intelligent software (AI, ML)
  • APIs (GraphQL, REST, HTTP protocol fun)
  • Decentralized Web (IPFS, dat, etc)
  • Building more inclusive technical communities and a healthier industry
  • Going beyond touch & text (e.g. AR/VR, voice interfaces)
  • Web platform (Web Assembly, latest additions)
  • Accessibility
  • Performance (scaling, perception, large systems)
  • Devops (Serverless, Containers, etc)
  • Developer Ethics
  • Security, Privacy and Trust

How to submit a proposal

First, make sure you're available to attend the conference. It will be held on September 1-2, 2020.

Talk submissions are done as 2 minute videos. Your goal here is not to produce a perfectly executed mini-talk, it is to describe your talk idea informally. What's the topic? How do you want to approach it? Why is it interesting?

We won't make the videos public, so no need to worry about random Internet people seeing them. But we feel this is a good opportunity to start building a comfort level with talking about your idea in front of an audience.

Below are a couple of submissions from two of our 2019 speakers, . These videos are not meant to be templates, they're just here to illustrate a few goals: be clear about your topic, share some context for why you care, and please be yourself!

If you're still hesitant about the video, here's a suggestion. Forget recording for now. Stand up, in a place where no one can hear you, and describe your talk idea out loud. When you're done, start over and do it again, ten times in a row. With a two-minute limit, ten tries only take about 20 minutes. After your tenth try, you may feel much more confident.

Once you’ve recorded your 2-minute video, just upload it to a public but obfuscated place. Some suggestions: Youtube (mark as unlisted), Dropbox, S3, your own web host.

Note for ASL speakers

If you would like to deliver your talk using ASL, we are here we to support you! Once your proposal has been accepted, we will work with you to figure out the best way to make sure your talk is delivered appropriately to folks in our audience who don't understand ASL.

For the purposes of the CFP, please record the 2-minute video using ASL and include an attached transcript. Our Talk Review Committee will use both to video and the transcript to evaluate your proposal.

We’re here to help!

There are a million reasons why you might not think you’re qualified or capable of giving a talk, let alone at CascadiaJS. We are here to prove you wrong. If all you have is a gut feeling that you have something important to share with people, we are here to help you hone your idea and craft a great submission. We are happy to connect you with experienced speakers to help prepare your submission. Just join our Slack and head over to the #cfp channel.

If you are a new speaker, once your talk has been accepted we will commit to working with you to give an awesome talk. This includes reviewing and advising on slides and helping you practice giving your talk. We can hook you up with local groups or set up a stage for you and a bunch of friends in advance, so you can practice in front of a friendly crowd. Again, whatever else you might need, we’re here to help.

The selection process

Submissions close on March 20, 2020. We will get back to all speakers as soon as possible. We will email all speakers at roughly the same time, so everyone will hear back on the same day.

Submit Proposal