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Monica Guzman

Send ‘em in, folks: After a nice summer break (with some lovely Seattle weather, we might add), submissions are open for the next Ignite Oct. 7 at Town Hall Seattle.

But hurry: The deadline to submit talks is Labor Day, Sept. 1!

To submit your talk, fill out the form here. It’s nothing too fancy, but if you’ve never submitted a talk before, we recommend you check out organizer Scott Berkun’s guide to building a great Ignite talk. We get a LOT of submissions. Make sure yours stands out!

Here’s a little bit on what Ignite is all about from the folks at Ignite Phoenix:

And here’s a fun piece from KUOW on our May event.

See you in October!


The crowd at Ignite 24 thought they were going to hear “A Geek’s Guide to Wedding Planning.” Instead, they all attended the lightning fast surprise wedding of Teresa and Noah, who met at an Ignite years ago. Congratulations, guys!

Noah thinks about data visualization and user experience. And bicycles. Teresa sings — really well — and is also known as songwriter Tae Phoenix.


Diets always fail. Always. Definitely. At Ignite 24, Dylan Wilbanks told us all about why.

“Over 16 months Dylan Wilbanks lost over 125 lbs with caloric restriction, heavy exercise, and being slightly insane. But the statistics say he won’t be able to keep it off. He’ll explain why, and how he’s trying to fight it.”

Dylan Wilbanks is a user experience designer and public speaker based in Seattle. He’s spoken at South by Southwest, Webvisions, and Ignite Seattle.


Where does syphilis come from? There’s more than one answer to this question. At Ignite 24, Jennifer Whetham gave a more brainy, linguistic one than you probably saw coming.

“Two questions you may not have thought to ask: What is the origin of the word “syphilis”? When was the word first used? This talk begins in fair Verona, where we lay our scene…”

Jennifer Locke Whetham is a Shakespeare scholar, hip hop theorist, and self-proclaimed intellectual pervert. She has over ten years experience teaching literature at the college level, where she indulges her obsession with conceptions of sexuality, gender, love, and words.


Washington state’s initiative process could use a few advocates — you. Jan Gray laid out the issues at Ignite 24.

“You’re successful, energetic, organized and full of great ideas. You’ve volunteered and donated to a nonprofit with a mission you really care about. But…there are a few questions you’ll want to get answered before you commit to serving on their board of directors.”

Jan Gray is a two career baby boomer with 20 years in broadcast marketing and 20 more in not-for-profit leadership and consulting. She is a co-founder of the non-partisan, not-for-profit group Responsible Choices which is currently raising funds to produce Washington State’s first Citizens’ Initiative Review.


Nonprofit boards are amazing, efficient organizations that do nothing that serve their mission. Or not. At Ignite 24, Karen Anderson tells the real story.

“You’re successful, energetic, organized and full of great ideas. You’ve volunteered and donated to a nonprofit with a mission you really care about. But…there are a few questions you’ll want to get answered before you commit to serving on their board of directors.”

Karen G. Anderson writes and designs online content for a wide range of companies and organizations. She is the current chair of the board for the Clarion West Writers Workshop and the past president of the board of Northwest Folklife.


Kristin Leong: Nightclub bartending & middle school teaching: A Venn diagram

June 26, 2014

What do middle schoolers and bar patrons have in common? More than you think. At Ignite 24, Kristin Leong shared what she found where two very different professions meet. “Surprisingly, there is overlap between nightclub and classroom professional life. This talk aims to clarify some of that overlap with the speed of a bartender and […]

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Seijen Takamura: Can bicycles be lonely?

June 24, 2014

Some people collect pictures of pets or landscapes. Seijen Takamura collects pictures of forgotten bicycles. At Ignite 24, he explains what they’ve taught him: “We have all walked past a Lonely Bicycle in our lifetime: A bike that is securely locked to a rack, fence, or pole… yet is missing wheels, saddles, handlebars, or more. […]

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Kathryn Downie: Why My Face is Bright Red

June 19, 2014

You know you’ve conquered stage fright when you give an Ignite talk. At Ignite 24, Kathryn Downie explains how she made it happen. “Stage fright sucks, but hopefully this talk will make it suck a little bit less. Like many people, Kathryn Downie tends to turn into a splotchy, shaky mess when she is in […]

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David Hulton: Hacker camps!

June 17, 2014

What happens when you take geeks outdoors? David Hulton shared the history of hacker camps at Ignite 24. “This talk covers the brief history of Hacker Camps, why the community they create is so special and unique compared to other tech conferences, and share a little bit about the US hacker camp, ToorCamp, that happens […]

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The Definition of Running – Josh Maher

January 23, 2013

Toddlers run and run and run like crazy. Adults, not so much. Josh Maher explains why we grown-ups should give running – particularly barefoot running – another go. Was he wearing those wacky toe shoes while giving his talk? Heck yeah he was.

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Know Your China – Lois Wang

January 21, 2013

It’s a big country that’s getting bigger – socially, politically and commercially. But how well do you know your China? In this talk, Lois Wang shares her theories about this culture on the other side of the world, and how to use some principles of consumer psychology to – and I quote – “sell them […]

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The Secret Superpowers of Being Deaf – Alex Alviar

January 17, 2013

Being deaf, it turns out, helps you see things others don’t. Alex Alviar was born deaf and has lived much of his life with a cochlear implant. In this talk, he shares how he engages the world, how the world reacts, and the unexpected things his senses have shown him. “It’s like having a secret […]

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