devopsdays Chicago - Speaker Information

Thank you for being a part of our event! This document is our attempt to get as much useful information into one place as possible.

Event Details and Schedule

Venue Location

UIC Forum 725 West Roosevelt Road, Chicago, Illinois 60608

Directions from ORD or from MDW; parking recommendations

Schedule

The event takes place on Wednesday and Thursday, September 21-22, 2022. The detailed schedule for the two days can be found at https://devopsdays.org/chicago/program. There is also a high-level schedule at the end of this document.

A Speaker Dinner/Event is planned for the evening of Tuesday, September 20. Details are still being worked out, and more information will be shared as soon as available. Save the date!

The conference usually hosts an evening event starting at 5 PM on the first evening of the event (Wednesday, Sept 21). Details forthcoming.  We hope you can join us!

Check-in

If you attend the Speaker Event, we will give you your badge and check you in at the dinner. This would allow you to skip the registration line at the event. Just make sure to wear your badge to gain admission to the conference!

If you do not attend the speaker event, you will need to check in at the registration desk. Make sure to let them know you are a speaker.

Attendance

As DevOpsDays is a community event, we hope that all of our speakers make an effort to attend as much of the conference as possible. Attendees are looking forward to learning  from you outside of your talk!

In the afternoon of both days, we will have Open Space sessions, which are attendee-driven participant discussions. It’s great when our speakers are able to participate in these, and we VERY much appreciate it.

Travel and Lodging

If you are coming in from out of town and your employer does not cover your travel, we will reimburse you up to $400 for flights (unless other accommodations have been discussed), and we will cover up to three nights at one of the conference hotels. If you have specific questions about travel reimbursement, please contact us at chicago@devopsdays.org.

Flight information

If you haven’t been to Chicago before, there are two airports - O’Hare (ORD) and Midway (MDW). We will arrange a car service to pick you up from the airport if you’d like (you’ll be on your own to get to the airport, though!). Make sure that chicago@devopsdays.org has been notified of your flight number, airline, arrival time, and airport, and we will confirm the car service for you. Both airports are accessible via public transportation if you prefer.

If we’re covering your flight, check with the organizers (chicago@devopsdays.org) before you book the cheapest possible thing - we should ensure your arrival/departure times work well (ideally, you’d arrive Tuesday before 3 pm and depart Friday morning or Thursday night if necessary) and we’ll reimburse direct flights on your preferred airline.

Hotel

There is no official conference hotel/room block, but we recommend the Chicago Marriott at the Medical District/UIC.

Parking

Recommendations for parking can be found at https://spothero.com/chicago/uic-forum-parking. If you pay for parking, please provide the receipts to chicago@devopsdays.org and we will reimburse you!

A/V

There is no conference template to use; rejoice! (Optional but recommended: adding your Twitter handle at least at the beginning/end and ideally on each slide makes it easier for people to tweet about your talk - see https://bridgetkromhout.com/blog/livetweeting-tech-conferences/). Lots of people will probably want your slides after the fact, and tweeting them with #devopsdays is the best way to distribute them. The conference will link to but will not host them.

We will have a presentation computer to run your talk from, and we will provide a presentation remote for you to advance your slides. If you wish to run your talk from your own laptop, let us know no later than Sept 16 via email to chicago@devopsdays.org, and you must check in with A/V at 7:30 AM the day of your talk. Our preference is to use our computer to prevent any hardware-specific issues. Ignites will be presented from a common laptop (see the section below for more Ignite talk specifics!)

The presentation computer will have Keynote, Powerpoint, PDF, or Google Slides as options for presentation software; if you need something other than this, please let us know at chicago@devopsdays.org and we will accommodate you! If you are using the conference laptop to present, please provide your slides (and any supporting fonts/files) to chicago@devopsdays.org no later than Monday, Sept 19.

Your mic choices include a headset microphone (mounted over an ear) or a wireless lav microphone (clipped to your shirt), both of which have a small belt/pocket pack attached. If you prefer to use a wireless handheld mic you’ll have this option as well.

You will have two confidence monitors in your line of sight. One will mirror the display being shown to the audience and the other will show any speaker notes if you have them. For ignites - you will NOT have speaker notes available, so if you need notes, you’ll need to put them on cards or printed on paper.

The displays will be large and widescreen. Build your deck for 16x9 (if you use 4x3, it won’t look as good).

There will be conference wifi but we strongly recommend not having any dependence on working internet for your presentation (as it’s unpredictable). Live demos are not well-suited to this environment (so be sure to pre-record any such content). If you are giving a workshop, please don’t expect your workshop participants to be able to succeed with giant downloads. List those as prerequisites on our site.

If you need anything not mentioned above (like audio from your laptop, presenting from multiple laptops, etc), do let us know ahead of time; we can likely accommodate whatever you need, but we’ll need to test any such setup ahead of time.

Please also remember to disable your screensaver and desktop notifications during your presentation. Make sure your laptop is unlocked PRIOR to hooking up to video display, so everyone doesn’t watch you type in your password..

Tech check

(Does not apply to Ignite speakers)

If you are not using the provided presentation laptop, you will need to check in with our AV team prior to the start of the conference day. You should receive a calendar invite to block out the time that your talk is occurring, but the notes of the invite will include when we expect you to check in with AV to get set up, microphone, etc (usually it is during the break before your talk). 

Save Q&A for Open Spaces

We do not facilitate Q&A as part of the talks. We recommend that you encourage attendees to ask any follow-up questions either during the breaks, in Open Space sessions, or via your preferred social media channels.

Sharing Slides

As a reminder, we don’t host your slides, but we love to put links to them on the devopsdays website after the event! Please email the link to chicago@devopsdays.org when you have it, and we’ll update the website (you can do this after the event, of course!)

Captioning

We will have live captioning occurring; if you know you’ll have difficult-to-parse terms, it’s helpful to brief the captioner ahead of time.

Stage Details

The stage has several steps; please let us know if you require accommodation for stairs. We will have bottled water available on stage. The backdrop for the stage is a black curtain, with two screens on either side. See our Flickr for photos from the 2019 set up.

Recording

Talks will be recorded and made available on the conference website within a reasonable time after the event. We will email you when your talk is online!

Social Media

We love it when our speakers are active on social media! The preferred hashtag for the event is #devopsdays, and the event’s Twitter handle is @devopsdayschi. We have created social media cards for your use - you can find yours at https://bit.ly/dodchi-2022-speaker-cards

Ignite Speaker Details

If you are presenting an Ignite talk, there are a few extra details that matter to you.

Your deck must be exactly 20 slides (don’t worry about making them auto-advance; we will take care of that).

Ignites will not be presented from your own laptop; we will assemble them and present from the conference laptop. You will be able to see the current slide being shown on the confidence monitor, but you will NOT have access to speaker notes in your presentation. If you want notes, you will have to go old-school and put them on cards or paper :)

You will use a handheld microphone for your Ignites. The confidence monitor will display the current slide - you will not be able to see any speaker notes embedded in the presentation.

Please send your slides (in PDF format) to chicago@devopsdays.org no later than Friday, Sept 16, 2022. This will allow our Ignite coordinator time to assemble the slides and make sure everything works.

Note: Because Ignites are presented via PDF, animated GIFs will not be, well, animated. Be advised. If you have alternative requirements for your Ignite talk, please let us know ASAP

Contact Information

If you have general questions about the event, please feel free to email chicago@devopsdays.org at any time! The main contact for speaker coordination is Matty Stratton - matt@devopsdayschi.org or 312-361-7611.

During the actual event (days of Sept 21-22) the on-premises contact for speaker questions or issues will be Christian Herro - christian@devopsdayschi.org or (608) 285-2791.

DevOpsDays Chicago 2022 Schedule

(detailed program)

Tuesday, Sept 20th
6pm-9pm CDT Tentative plans for Speaker Event
Wednesday Sept 21st
8am CDT Conference breakfast and sponsors are available.
9am-5pm CDT Conference Day 1 (lunch served)
5pm-7pm CDT Evening event (tentatively planned) If you want to go out, we suggest you go out after the event. Attendance at the evening event is, of course, optional, but we would love to see you there!
Thursday Sept 22nd
8am CDT Conference breakfast and sponsors are available.
9am-5pm CDT Conference Day 2 (lunch served)
5pm-?? CDT There are no official activities Wednesday after 5pm CDT. Some sponsors may be hosting happy hour events, but they are not promoted or endorsed by the conference.