I participated in the CSCW 2012, Conference on Computer Supported Cooperative Work, as a ACM girl. I spent 5 days in Hyatt Hotel Seattle, Washington US since the conference was held there. The weather by the time had 6°C in average, and the time zone did not differ so much from my original place: Peru (Lima is 3:0 hours ahead of Seattle).
I made a contact with Dr. Valerie Barr, ACM promoter of women in computer science, because I am about to defend my master thesis and I am interesting in getting PhD studies. So, I got the scolarship with two more girls: Maíra Rejane Marques Samary, PhD student from Brazil and Truc Nguyen, undergraduated student from Standford. Our pic 🙂
ACM women manages lots of groups in computer science area, one of them is SIGCHI.
This conference grouped SIGCHI researchers from prestigious universities and institutions like MIT, Google, Harvard and so many others. Professors, PhD s, PhD students and post graduate students presented papers and discussed researchers during the two first days through 15 workshops and a doctoral colloquium.
The third day, we attended to the Yochai Benkler keynotes. As a professor of Entrepreneurial Legal Studies at Harvard, he welcomed us and he pointed the importance of SIGCHI in political, legal, economics; transversally of family, education and personal life in different places through time. He emphasize how these issues are related to the computer science, he showed statistics of it and the final message I got as a keywords were solidarity, identity and cooperation. We can provide better life to humans of this and the next generation.
The activities I participated during the week varied from talks and issues in Family life, Brothers and Sisters at Play: Exploring Game Play with Siblings by Janet Go, Rafael Ballagas, nad M. Spasojevic; to interactive demonstrations of researchers about Telepresence.
From all the talks and presentations I got interesting in Dr. Susan Wyche talk about “Learning from marginalized users: Reciprocity HI4D, since I have a telecommunication background and I want to contribute in the area using concepts of fractal antennas. I also got in contact with Dr. David Karger from MIT to participate in open source project called SIMILITE, he made me direct my attention in Exhibit 3.
Finally I met Chirag Shah, Ph.D. Assitant Professor of School of Communication and Information who has many projects in his briefcase.
In total, this experience was so rewarding and made me keep in mind the academic site in my life. I had worked in my country for almost seven years before getting involved in academy entirely. I know these both areas has to be related somehow. It is a difficult job, but I think it is important… we cannot live in the academic bubble nor in the routine of the industry.