Thursday, March 15, 2018

my cosmo geek week, part I

liljevalchs vårsalong, stockholm, sweden, march 2018 -

My intention was to write a long, rambling-ish post about some of the inspirational stuff I've done this past week. My cosmo-geek week. But I realised just now that it'll be a lot longer than I had intended, so I'll make a part I and II of it instead.

Here goes part I -

:: I managed to snap one of those much coveted tickets to the annual Women in Tech Stockholm convention (WIT always takes place on March 8, naturally), this year 1500 tickets were gone in 120 seconds... As you know I shy away from fairs and places that attract a lot of people in general. The introvert me hates it. That I entered and attended countless of cat shows for years and years is in hindsight bewildering, I know.

But I have been known to attend TEDx talks and Geek Girl meetups, and enjoyed myself - if not the "do mingle!" element. I'm a grown up, I can chose myself and if I chose to watch, listen, learn and be inspired 'only', well that's nobody's business but mine. Especially not when I've paid for the tickets. - and this seemed liek a great opportunity for inspiration and learning.

The day before the WIT 2018 there was a sort of kick off breakfast talk at tech giant Tieto. I'm not a morning person, having to leave home at 5.45 am to be sure to get to the venue - the company headquarters are situated really inconventiently - by 7.45ish did not fill me with joy. But I'm so glad I went. The talk was held by IT Woman of the Year 2017, Malin Cronqvist, the founder of charity platform Help to Help.

Which funds scholarships in Tanzania and Uganda via transparent crowdfunding. Which, unlike most major charity organisations, make sure the money get where they're supposed to. A remarkable example - in a country with 56 million people (Tanzania) there are 236 dentists and 20 anaesthsiologists. Whopping numbers of wrong.

The talk was so. very. inspirational. A simple and very hands on idea that can make real change happen. And by empowering women we are empowering societies, countries, the world.

women in tech stockholm, march 8, 2018 -

:: The WIT conference in itself was exhausting, way to much people, not enough breaks and certainly not enough food for such a long day. But also very inspiring, some talks, discussions and interviews were great, others very less so. You can watch all the sessions at the WIT website. But from my personal point of interest view I enjoyed talks from these talented women the most -

Joy Buolamwini, "the poet of code on a mission to show compassion through computation". You should watch her enlightening about bias in algorithms. Who codes matters, how we code matters and why we code matters, to fight misogyni and racism.

A panel discussion about #metoo and the extended misogyni within the tech industry, Swedish hashtag #teknisktfel (technical error).

Computer science professor Danica Cragic, who specialise in robotics and just won the award Tech Woman of the Year 2018.

The breakout session Starting up, Starting over: What startup life is really like.

A message from the (female) mayor of Stockholm, Karin Wanngård, that our fair city is a #awomansplace - "Equality in Sweden isn't perfect, but it might be the best that we have in the world." The website is worth an enlightening visit.

A panel discussion on building sustainable businesses. One participant was the co-founder of Gigafood, an acclaimed plantbased catering and sustainability business.

Inventor and engineer Anna Svensson, the woman behind the world's first integrated solar panels - yup, before Elon Musk - at the company SolTech Energy. 

Helena Samsioe, co-founder of Globhe, drone delivery and drone data on demand.

Then I left a bit early, which was a relief after 8 intense hours. And with me home I got loads of inspiration.

:: Part II of my cosmo-geek week will be about the above sweet, endearing and tear inducing sculpture called "Kerstin shall save all the animals" which is part of the annual spring salon since 1921 at art museum Liljevalchs. And quite a few other favourites I got at the exhibition too, how about pieces with though-provoking names like German philosophers with cats, the bulldog Rolf (made from old nylon stockings), 365 days of yoga, Rabbit with carrot (crocheted), The Introvert House, The pig mother, I wish I was beautiful as a swan, could fly and wear red high heels?

:: It will also be about my first, belated meetup with my new friend I met via the integration project Kompis Sverige (Buddy Sweden), it took me 2 years to get a proper match.

:: About an unexpected compliment from a ticket collector.

:: And about the fact that my obsession with fondness for bobbaloos has, for various reasons, turned into an obsession with fondness for the Japanese collector doll and goodluck charm Sonny Angel.

that moment when one if my outfits has turned in to a building, march 14, 2018

:: For now, let's end this post by contemplating that moment, upon arriving at a job meeting, and you're met by a wallpaper that looks like "one of your outfits has turned into a building" - not my words but they perfectly captured the situation. Needless to say I'd love to have a dress in that exact same colour and pattern like that green, tpriped wallpaper.

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