Sci-fi meets open source at annual Penguicon, Michigan

By on April 25, 2015
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Dedicated to our followers near Southfield, Michigan, rush to Penguicon today!

This weekend over 1,400 nerds will convene at the Southfield Westin Hotel for the 12th annual Penguicon, a technical conference and social convention that marries sci-fi fandom with collaborative, nonprofit software development.Unlike many well known sci-fi cons, Penguicon offers a little something for everyone.

This year’s event features 500 hours of programming with topics including video games, food, science, ecology and technology.Special guests include Hugo Award winner and io9 Editor-in-Chief Charlie Jane Anders, Gizmodo Editor-in-Chief Annalee Newitz, and founder Aral Balkan.

Previous guests have included bestselling authors Neil Gaiman and Ernest Cline.Penguicon was founded in 2003 to fill a major gap in the nerd community, says Scott Kennedy, Penguicon assistant chair and head of communications.

“It was from some people who were into Linux programming and other open source stuff, but they also went to local sci-fi conventions and they were like there’s a big cross pollination,” Kennedy says.

“There’s people who like sci-fi books and people who like open source software. Why shouldn’t we get them in the same place and share interests?”The nonprofit, volunteer-run convention was a success from the start, thanks in big part to attendee-generated programming covering a broad spectrum of subjects, says Nuri Gocay, Penguicon chair.

“There’s a large variety of topics, from molecular gastronomy, to whiskey tasting, to how to brew your own beer, to urban farming and beekeeping” Gocay says. “We have people who talk about the media, whether it’s Joss Whedon or ‘Stargate SG-1.’ We also have music and local DJs. Anything you can geek out about, we have a panel about.”

more info here: Sci-fi meets open source at annual Penguicon nerdfest

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