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Sondra Willhite
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Philadelphia Geekettes, come celebrate International Women's Day at LadyHacks, Philadelphia's women only hackathon.  

LadyHacks is a community event for women of all skill levels to work collaboratively on projects using technology to provide solutions. We follow the model of a civic hackathon, with a goal of working on projects for the social good rather than hosting a competition for a commercial product. However, as a hackathon we encourage all attendees to bring their own ideas to the table, and everyone will have the opportunity to suggest a project. If you don’t have a specific project you want to work on, they’ll be plenty of groups looking for team members!


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Twive and Receive Day for TechGirlz!

On June 14th,  TechGirlz is Philadelphia’s entry in Twive and Receive Day,  a national 24 hour fundraising contest.  Each participating organization has 24 hours to raise as much money as possible.  The three organizations that raise the most funds will win an additional donation of between $5,000 and $15,000. 

TechGirlz is proudly another of Philadelphia’s many firsts.  It is the first organization to provide adolescent girls with programming to show them that a future in technology does not necessarily equate to a “boring computer job” but instead transcends the cubicle into nearly every field imaginable.  By encouraging young women to participate in technology today, as well as providing a solid foundation of peers, mentors and positive role models, TechGirlz hopes to spark innovation, exhilaration and motivation in young women to become tomorrow’s tech leaders.  The girls in the program have built their own websites, learned 3D gaming, built their own electronic jewelry and tinkered in robotics.  The girls are learning that gender barriers do not have to exist in any industry.  They can love and learn anything.   More importantly they are learning that there are no limits to what they can do.

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Watching the videos for week one of Human Computer Interaction, another amazing free class offered by Coursera. Of the classes I've taken I'm enjoying this one the most so far. Perhaps it's because I'm enjoying an 'idea' class that offers a break from code, or maybe it's because Prof Klemmer just paid tribute to Grace Hopper, and introduced me to Vannevar Bush and Alan Kay (why have I not heard these names before?).

Class just started yesterday. It's not too late to join!

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I always enjoy these RSA Animates.
Thanks to Gustavo Ayala for finding this for me. Microsoft's +Manuel Lima explains how networks a more powerful paradigm in which to frame our understanding in science and other fields.

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A very cool look at music, in history and present.
In this epic overview, Michael Tilson Thomas traces the development of classical music through the development of written notation, the record, and the re-mix.

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Wonder if I can apply the metro-map algorithm to the neural pathways in my mind, which is definitely too scattered these days.
Dafna Shahaf (CMU) presented a new kind of structured summary of information called "metro maps." These are automatically constructed organizations of news story timelines into a connected map. The algorithm she describes finds a concise set of documents that maximize coverage of a topic. The evaluation asked participants to generate one paragraph summaries based on either metro maps or Google News results, which were then evaluated for completeness and coherence. The paper also also goes into personalization of metro maps. Look for metro map website coming soon....

Paper "Trains of Thought: Generating Information Maps"

This was a standout paper at WWW this year. It would be interesting to apply this new summarization technique to other kinds of document sets.

+Andrew Tomkins +Christos Faloutsos William Cohen +Kevin McCurley Jure Leskovec +Sasha Blair-Goldensohn --- you are all cited.


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Dear Dunkin Donuts,
When I order a medium coffee, I mean medium coffee, not medium coffee with cream and sugar. The onus of specificity should fall on those who pollute their coffee with non-coffee accessories.
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