Last week I flew to Lisbon, Portugal to the Instituto Superior Técnico (IST) to speak at and attend SINFO 24, a week-long, non-profit conference run by IST students for IST students, consisting of an employer expo, workshops, and keynotes.


First off, I have to say this post is a consummate love letter to SINFO 24 and its coordinators. Some quick facts about why I loved SINFO so much:

  1. Each SINFO is planned over a year by IST students on top of their normal, busy student lives. In fact, while SINFO was happening, some of the coordinators had to pop off for classes. Mad respect for the committment and dedication that requires.
  2. The speaker roster was amazing (totally excluding myself from that). The other speakers were high-caliber from varying industries: engineering, games, graphics, security. Some speakers work on things of which I am a huge fan so there was much happy geeking out on my part (Diablo III, Dota 2, and Mr. Robot to name just a few of these things).
  3. The coordinators took consummate care of us: always making sure our needs were met, letting us take prime seating in front, feeding us dinner and Pastéis de Belém, taking us around Lisbon to enjoy the campus and city, and simply being enthusiastic and lovely.
  4. You could just feel the energy from everyone: the coordinators, the speakers, the guests. Nothing really makes an event shine like the smiles and excitement of the people there. And SINFO was scintillating.

In my presentation I talked about "My Life in Android", which was basically me gushing about the Android platform and community. I hope that my love for both shown through, and I was so proud to represent them at SINFO.

In case you were wondering, all of the keynotes were recorded and will be available on YouTube.

This is what I like to call my Android-crazy-face.

Bonus Fact: Joel Spolsky, co-founder of Stack Overflow and Trello spoke at SINFO in 2013 on "The Cultural Anthropology of Stack Exchange".

Finally, I must thank SINFO so much for the invitation. Thank you to the entire team for all their hard work and passion. I also wanted to add a few extra, extra special thanks:

  • Inês Martins for initially inviting me to SINFO and putting up with my big delays in responses as I was traveling way too much. Unfortunately, I did not get to meet her in person as she is studying abroad this semester. Hope you're having a wonderful time, Inês!
  • Pedro Saraiva for taking over for Inês in looking after me at SINFO and for waking up obscenely early to pick me up at the airport and then waiting 2 hours for me to get through customs.
  • Rodrigo Lousada for being part of the "obscenely early" welcome party.
  • Nuno Pires for answering ridiculous questions about gelato late at night and keeping me on track via SMS.
  • Cátia Pereira and João Tiago for being totally pro, patient, and fun tour guides and drivers in Belém.

I wish every single university had an event like this, run as well and with as much passion by as amazing students.

Obrigada, SINFO.