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Code(Her) 2016 Conference

DC has the best tech community! I'm so happy to be participating in the Code(Her) 2016 Conference, a full day of coding workshops and inspiring presentations brought to us by Women Who Code DC.

First off, I want to give a big thank you to Careers@WashPost (@wpcareers) and DC Tech Meetup (@dctechmeetup) for their twitter contest on Thursday! As one of the winners of the contest I received a complimentary pass to today's conference. Once again, being part of the DC twitter community has its rewards.

Washington Post Engineering kicked off the morning with a panel discussion. We heard about how the Post is transforming in the digital age by collaboration, sharing and breaking down internal silos creating a culture where innovation thrives. Next up the DC CTO, Archana Vemulapalli, shared her experiences and advice as a senior tech executive. She advised us to listen, but also to know when not to listen, and to speak up.

The first workshop I attended was 'Analyzing and Visualizing DC Open Data' led by Kate Rabinowitz aka DataLenseDC . The Data Lense DC web site has so many insightful and informative data visualizations of the city that we love. It was great to get my feet wet working in R. Kate's entire presentation, data sets and tutorial are available on github at

A very nice lunch was served and we had plenty of time for networking. I enjoyed meeting in person several of the people who I had met during the recent #codeherchat.

In the afternoon I participated in the Master Class in UX Design - How to 10X Your Impact on any Project led by Lily Chandrasekher @lilpesos. Lily walked us through many great ideas to increase our effectiveness. She shared the work of Simon Sinek and his TedTalk "Start with WHY" which explaines that the most successful companies come from the place of explaining why their product (and their company) are important for the consumer's well-being, rather than explaining what their product does. She also shared with us strategies to improve in any area at a rate of 10 times (10X) where you are now rather than 10% better than now. To achieve 10% improvement you employ grit and perseverence, to achieve 10X improvement you employ bravery and creativity. Her talk was inspiring and she challenged us to identify 10 skills to improve on and then rank order them and take action to improve 10X the skills most important to us.

I wish I could have stayed longer, but a previous commitment cause me to leave at this point. All the presentations were informative, professional and thought-provoking. I'm looking forward to attending the conference next year and also to exploring other meetups organized by the DC Web Women.

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