Geek About Town: September

Can you believe summer is almost over?! But don’t fret, September has plenty of fun geeky things to do  plus GeekGirlCon is the last weekend of the month! Here’s some events to check out in the meantime.

Friday, Sept. 1: Scratch Retro Gaming: Pac-Man

  • Starts at 1 p.m. Living Computer Museum in Seattle’s SODO neighborhood
  • Free event
  • In Living Computer Museum Scratch Retro-Gaming Workshop series, you recreate the 8-bit classics. Boys and girls use MIT’s popular free programming platform, Scratch, to write and debug scripts, learn basic coding rules and jargon, and use simple game theory to create one of the most famous arcade games of all time: Pac-Man.

Friday, Sept. 1 – Monday, Sept. 4: PAX West (Visit GeekGirlCon in the diversity lounge!)

  • PAX West is sold out, but if you already have your tickets, make sure to come visit us at our table!
  • GeekGirlCon has been a proud participant at the PAX Diversity Lounge since it started in 2014. (This is year #4!) We’ll also be selling passes to our convention and GeekGirlCon merch! Learn more here. 

Ashli Blow
“Rock On!”

GeekGirlCon Passes Now Available In Stores and Online!

Are you a Pacific Northwest resident who wants to support a local business and get yourself a pass to GeekGirlCon 2017 at the same time? We’ve got good news for you: passes for GeekGirlCon are on sale now in comic book and game stores throughout the greater Seattle region!

While you can only take advantage of our early-bird pricing online now through August 31, these in-store passes will stay at early-bird pricing until they sell out. GeekGirlCon has sold out every year so far, so be sure to get yourself a pass before they’re gone!

Visit one of the following stores to pick up your pass while supplies last:

Caitlin Foskey
“Rock On!”

Early Bird Pricing Ends 8/31: Don’t Miss Out!

Deciding to go to a convention is no small task. You have to plan your days, decide on your cosplay, and figure out what art and swag you want to buy.

But even before that, you have to decide who you’re going to the con with!

That’s why if you’ve been on the fence about coming to GeekGirlCon, you need to finish reading this blog post and jump online to buy your passes. I didn’t plan to write this as a listicle, but here are four reasons why you should do that right now:

JC Lau
“Rock On!”

Agent Profiles: Part One

GeekGirlConAgents

GeekGirlCon Special Agents play a vital role in making sure each Con is a success. This year, a record-breaking 180 Agents from 7 states and 3 countries have volunteered to help us keep everything running smoothly. I interviewed three of these Agents to learn a bit about who they are and what made them sign up to help out this year. Here’s what they had to say:

Caitlin Foskey
“Rock On!”

Con Prep: Your Guide to Convention Etiquette

Con Prep is a new series of blog pieces providing tips, suggestions and other ideas as to help you prepare for convention season.

The second installment of Con Prep was written by Guest Contributor Mike James. 

 

Conventions should be somewhere that everyone can have a good time and feel safe to be themselves. But if it’s your first time going to a convention it can be an unusual experience that’s quite different to anything else in the world. It’s important to understand convention etiquette so that you, and everyone else, can have a great time.

 

Things You Need To Bring

Let’s get started by looking at the things that you need to remember to bring to the convention. Firstly, possibly the most important item is a good, sturdy backpack. There are plenty of things that you will need while you’re here so you need a way to carry them. Remember you may want to buy things or pick up freebies.

Also remember to bring a charger for your phone – many conventions have charging stations, but you usually need to provide your own lead. And it’s also a good idea to bring along some anti-bacterial gel. Lots of people all touching the same things all day can make conventions a breeding ground for bacteria, so it’s best to have gel available to clean your hands every so often.

 

What to Wear

Comfort is key word when it comes to convention wear. You’re going to be on your feet for a significant amount of time so prioritise comfortable shoes over stylish ones. It’s also a good idea to dress in layers, so that you can remove or add if you get too hot or cold.

If you’re playing on cosplaying at the convention, this can be a lot of fun, but it may be best to have some comfortable clothes that you can change into if you overheat or get tired of the attention that outfits inevitably bring.

 

Taking Photographs

Conventions are often filled with both famous and talented individuals that you might admire as well as people cosplaying in fantastic costumes. As such, people taking photos is expected at many conventions. But that doesn’t mean you can just start taking photos of whoever you like, from any angle you like.  Just as you would in almost any scenario; if you want to take a picture of or with someone, it’s just good manners to ask their permission first. At many conventions this is a rule, so be aware of what is allowed at the convention you’re visiting.  

You might want to avoid the embarrassment of asking someone if it’s fine to take a photo of them, but getting caught trying to covertly take pictures is far worse. In most cases, as long as they are not too busy, most people will be delighted to take a photo with you. Just remember to approach them at a time that is convenient – don’t butt into someone’s conversation just to get a photo. And always remember that you are taking up someone else’s time, so be courteous.

 

Follow The Rules

If you are bringing a costume or anything unusual, it can be best to check the rules or ask the convention directly whether it is acceptable. For example, you might be tempted to bring a hoverboard to your next convention. These slick and stylish personal transportation devices might seem like the perfect way to take the weight off your feet, rather than walking around all day. But it might be the case that devices like these are banned at the convention you’re visiting.  

Of course, you want to stand out from the crowd, but be careful that you don’t bring along anything that is against the rules.

Additionally, you should note that each individual convention will have their own rules about what is and what is not acceptable in terms of behaviour. You should definitely familiarise yourself with the rules if it’s your first time at this particular convention – what’s OK elsewhere, might not be OK here.

 

Get Permission First

This goes for almost anything you want to do. Whether you want to have a chat with someone, hug them, touch a part of their costume, or anything else, make sure you graciously ask if they are happy for you to do so. Even if it seems like something innocuous or something that that wouldn’t bother you, that doesn’t mean that it is acceptable behaviour for everyone. So respect everyone’s space and ask permission before you do anything. And don’t be offended if they say no.

 

Do you have other tips for con attendees? Let us know in the comments below!

GeekGirlCon
“Rock On!”

Taking back the video game industry we built

A photo from GeekGirlCon’s gaming floor in 2014. (Photo by Sayed Alamy)

More than 1,000 people recently liked and reblogged a post on tumblr titled, “What happened to the women that built the video game industry?”

The publication Mic posted the article, which explores the early adventure computer game industry in the 80s and 90s. The piece widely credits women as being designers, producers, and directors in the new frontier of hit software development — with games like Sierra Co-founder Roberta Williams’ King’s Quest selling over 400,000 copies and leaders like Electronic Arts’ art department head Nancy L. Fong.

But the article notes that some women designers started to lose interest as the hyper-masculine game culture emerged in the mid-90s.

Ashli Blow
“Rock On!”

Con Prep: Top Tech Tips for Your Next Convention

Con Prep is a new series of blog pieces providing tips, suggestions and other ideas as to help you prepare for convention season. 

This piece was written by Guest Contributor Cassie Tolhurst.

Convention season is coming, and along with it, people dressed as Daenerys, Arya, and Sansa. You’ll see other characters too—some from galaxies far, far away or from universes yet unknown to the common person. Others descend from on high, ascend from down low, or step out of cities somehow twistedly familiar. You, as the duly appointed representative of planet Earth, recognize them all and herald their arrival at comic conventions every fall.

Regardless of where the characters usually dwell, their on-screen or in-book depictions claim an ability you don’t: immunity to the need for connectivity. Fortunately, the eleven tech tips listed here can grant you that power. Some you already know from attending gaming or comic book conventions in the past. Others will provide practical inspiration for the upcoming convention season.

Guest Contributor
“Rock On!”

Agent Applications Closing Soon!

Think of it now: this September, the convention floor will crowded with cosplayers, artists, and fans alike–gathered together for what we’ve been looking forward to all year. GeekGirlCon 2017! Everyone will be lining up for panels, taking selfies with their favorite voice actors, checking their wallets to make sure they have enough cash for that plushie or print they saw in the Exhibitor Hall, fervently discussing how excited we all are to see Ellie again in The Last of Us 2 (well, maybe that last part is my girl-crush speaking). I can see it now: busy and exciting. It’ll be filled with laugher, and maybe even a few tears over Gal Gadot as Wonder Woman.

Right now, the GeekGirlCon team is busy at work making sure that everything is perfect when you step foot on the floor of The Conference Center as the WSCC, and there’s still time to get involved. You have until next Saturday, July 15th, at 10pm to apply to become an Agent for GeekGirlCon 2017.

GeekGirlCon is fueled by its volunteers, and we wouldn’t be able to host the convention each year without our team of Agents ready and waiting on the convention floor to help us throw an amazing event. Whether or not you’re working behind the scenes, or directing the traffic of con-goers on the floor, there’s plenty that needs to be done over the weekend of the convention, and we’re still looking to expand our team of volunteers to make sure we’re able to put on the show without a hitch.

There are only two basic requirement to become an Agent:

  1. You must be at least 16 years of age at the time of the convention.
  2. You must be available to work 2 shifts (that are 4 to 5 hours each) over the weekend of the convention, September 30th and October 1st.

That’s it! So long as those requirements are met, get ready because this year’s GeekGirlCon is bigger than ever before, and we’re excited to share what we’ve been working so hard on since last year.

We’ll see you in September!

Indigo Boock
“Rock On!”

Celebrating Five Years of DIY Science

At GeekGirlCon, accessibility is everything. Putting together a packed weekend of accessible and inclusive geeky programming is fundamental to GeekGirlCon’s mission. One event that reflects this commitment is our DIY Science Zone. The DIY Science Zone is one of GeekGirlCon’s most unique bits of programming, and this year we’re celebrating its fifth anniversary. Equally as exciting for both kids and adults, the DIY Science Zone brings together scientists, science educators, and science enthusiasts alike to participate in hands-on activities and experiments, chat about various scientific fields, and celebrate accessible learning.

Teal Christensen
“Rock On!”

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