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

Convene (in the Willis Tower)

233 S. Wacker Drive, Chicago, IL 60606

Directions from ORD or from MDW; parking recommendations


The event takes place on Wednesday and Thursday, August 9-10, 2023. The detailed schedule for the two days can be found at There is also a high-level schedule at the end of this document.

As a part of the Global DevOpsDays Organizer Summit, all DevOpsDays Chicago speakers are invited to join for an evening reception/party the evening of Tuesday, August 8. This will take place at Franklin Tap at 6:00 PM. You should have received a calendar invite with more details!


If you attend the Organizer Summit Party Event, we will give you your badge and check you in there. 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!

Even with your badge, you will still need to go through the Covid-19 check (show your vaccination card or negative test result) and get a sticker for your badge. If you are speaking on Wednesday, please to identify yourself as as to a person in a red volunteer/organizer shirt and we will bump you up to the front of the line!

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


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 [email protected].

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 [email protected] has been notified of your flight number, airline, arrival time, airport, and drop-off location 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 ([email protected]) 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.


a city like Chicago, there are a lot of accomodation options! Here is a list of a few hotels based on proximity to the venue.

Loop (closest to the venue)

  • Kimpton Gray Hotel
  • Silversmith Hotel Chicago Downtown
  • Hilton Garden Inn Chicago Central Loop
  • Canopy by Hilton Chicago Central Loop
  • W Chicago City Center
  • Central Loop Hotel

The following hotels are a little further away, but still within reasonable distance of the venue.

  • Aloft Chicago Downtown River North
  • Crowne Plaza West Loop


Recommendations for parking can be found at SpotHero. If you pay for parking, please provide the receipts to [email protected] and we will reimburse you!


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 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 August 4 via email to [email protected], 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 a web browser as options for presentation software; if you need something other than this, please let us know at [email protected] and we will accommodate you! If you are using the conference laptop to present, please provide your slides (and any supporting fonts/files) to [email protected] no later than Friday, August 4th.

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.

Practice Feedback

New this year!

If you’re interested in practicing a portion of your presentation, we have a limited number of time slots available for you to present and receive feedback from one of the organizers of DevOpsDays Chicago. Sign up here:

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 (please be sure to schedule this with the AV team via [email protected]). You will 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.

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 [email protected] when you have it, and we’ll update the website (you can do this after the event, of course!)


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.


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 and we are on Mastodon at

We have created social media cards for your use - you can find yours at

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 [email protected] no later than Friday, August 4, 2023. 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 [email protected] at any time! The main contact for speaker coordination is Christian Herro - [email protected].

During the actual event (days of August 9-10) the on-premises contact for speaker questions or issues will be Corey Ward - [email protected] or (773) 255-8664.

DevOpsDays Chicago 2023 Schedule

(detailed program)

Tuesday, August 8th
6pm-9pm CDT Speaker/Organizer Party at Franklin Tap
Wednesday August 9th
8am CDT Conference breakfast and sponsors are available.
9am-5pm CDT Conference Day 1 (lunch served)
5pm-?? CDT There are no official activities Wednesday after 5pm CDT. Some sponsors may be hosting happy hour events!
Thursday August 10th
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.