Get inspired: 5 TED talks to start with

Nov 11, 2016 by Madalina Botez in  Tips

We’ve just opened the Call for Speakers for I T.A.K.E Unconference 2017. While preparing for next edition, we debated (again 🙂 ) what makes a talk memorable and thought-provoking.

In this context, here are 5 TED talks we’d like to share for your inspiration.

#1. Carol Dweck: The power of believing that you can improve

Carol Dweck researches “growth mindset” — the idea that we can grow our brain’s capacity to learn and to solve problems. In this talk, she describes two ways to think about a problem that’s slightly too hard for you to solve. Are you not smart enough to solve it … or have you just not solved it yet? A great introduction to this influential field.



#2 Elon Musk – The Mind Behind Tesla, SpaceX and SolarCity 

Entrepreneur Elon Musk is a man with many plans. The founder of PayPal, Tesla Motors and SpaceX sits down with TED curator Chris Anderson to share details about his visionary projects, which include a mass-marketed electric car, a solar energy leasing company and a fully reusable rocket.


#3. Linus Torvalds – The mind behind Linux

Linus Torvalds transformed technology twice — first with the Linux kernel, which helps power the Internet, and again with Git, the source code management system used by developers worldwide. In a rare interview with TED Curator Chris Anderson, Torvalds discusses with remarkable openness the personality traits that prompted his unique philosophy of work, engineering and life. “I am not a visionary, I’m an engineer,” Torvalds says. “I’m perfectly happy with all the people who are walking around and just staring at the clouds … but I’m looking at the ground, and I want to fix the pothole that’s right in front of me before I fall in.”


#4. Kevin Kelly – How technology evolves?

Tech enthusiast Kevin Kelly asks “What does technology want?” and discovers that its movement toward ubiquity and complexity is much like the evolution of life.

#5. Julian Treasure – How to speak so that people want to listen

Have you ever felt like you’re talking, but nobody is listening? Here’s Julian Treasure to help you fix that. As the sound expert demonstrates some useful vocal exercises and shares tips on how to speak with empathy, he offers his vision for a sonorous world of listening and understanding.




Ready to inspire and challenge yourself the software minds?

Apply to Call for Speakers for I T.A.K.E Unconference 2017!

How to find ideas for talks? 5 tested ways

Dec 09, 2016



When asked about what’s stopping them from joining technical events as speakers, most software crafters mention both external and internal barriers. Among them, “lack of extensive speaking experience” and “I can’t identify a specific topic to talk on” are recurrent.

If this is your case as well, here are 5 tested way from our team to get your ideas in order.

#1. Think of your best area of expertise and identify what’s worth sharing with others.

#itakeunconf tip: our team of reviewers will help you improve your sessions if necessary.

#2. Get a group of friends or colleagues together. Having other people to brainstorm ideas can help a lot: you might discover ideas that you wouldn’t have thought otherwise.

#itakeunconf tip: whenever we feel blocked, we ask our colleagues opinions. This way, we know that we will advance faster and improve our work. 

#3. Identify specifically one practice or more from your area of expertise. What’s one important thing you are mastering and believe other practitioners should know? Why?

#itakeunconf tip: when applying to call for speakers, ask for feedback from the event team on your ideas. 

#4. Present your session in a dedicated meetup, with a smaller audience. This way you will gather feedback and discover some new perspective to approach the session.

#itakeunconf tip: no matter the city, there are countless active meetup groups in the technology field. For example, if interested in agile, lean and software craftsmanship, get involved in AgileWorks monthly meetup.

#5. What’s the most exciting thing you are currently working on? Write down what’s your current drive and why. What example can you make out of it and others would find it useful?

[ctt template=”12″ link=”Q5Hdc” via=”no” ]#itakeunconf tip: our team of reviewers will help you improve your sessions if necessary.[/ctt]


Show us your coding skills and experiments. You have time until December 15th to apply at Call for Speakers! 



Aug 26, 2014

Trouble deciding which sessions to attend? The program is created to target the main roles in technical companies.
When the program is done you’ll see the recommended sessions for each persona.


albert Albert the Architect

  • Designs scalable systems and communicates their architecture
  • Maintains architectural integrity to allow easy addition of new features
  • Finds new ideas on how to balance performance, security, usability, reliability, etc.
  • Teaches the others architecture, design patterns, architecture patterns

carol Carol the CTO

  • Aligns business needs with technical strategy
  • Is responsible for quality, secure software
  • Evaluates appropriate technology platforms
  • Identifies technology trends

chris Chris the Craftsman Programmer

  • Wants to write quality code faster
  • Experiments and learns new techniques
  • Enjoys hanging around his peers
  • Is curious about how others work

cristina Cristina the Technical Co-Founder

  • Aims to build products/services that customers love
  • Defines technical architecture, strategy, design policies
  • Works side by side with programmers
  • Balances time to market with technical risks

diana Diana the DevOps

  • Aims to simplify deployment, configuration and monitoring
  • Works with programmers to ensure smooth releases
  • Wants to simplify the resolution of production issues

megan Megan the Manager

  • Manages projects
  • Leads by example
  • Grows happy teams
  • Implements metrics to measure and improve performance

tamara Tamara the Team Leader

  • Challenges the status quo with new ideas
  • Monitors the code quality
  • Has a big toolbox for solving technical problems
  • Researches tools to improve productivity

tudor Tudor the Technical Consultant

  • Wonders what are the emerging techniques
  • Informs people about suitable practices
  • Works closely with the development team
  • Advises on the technical strategy

5 things to consider when you submit a session abstract

May 08, 2018

11402575_1116763095006378_1659273775966342135_oI T.A.K.E Unconference 2015


If you are an experienced software craftsperson, but you are new to the international stage of speaking and teaching, here are 5 recommendations to make an attractive session abstract for the audience of I T.A.K.E. Unconference.


#1. Get into the attendees shoes

If you have a very clear idea of who your audience is going to be, make the exercise to think from their point of view. They choose to attend your session, and they expect the best value from their investment.

So, here are 3 things to consider:

  • what do you think is going to drive their attention
  • what is that thing they will remember
  • and apply in their daily work


#2. Customize, customize, customize 

Every audience is unique, so craft your proposal according to what you know about your audience and about the event. Try to bring an original approach for each session you submit.

As organizers, we encourage the speakers to have a clear goal for their session. Another essential aspect is to both inspire the audience and send them to a new path. With your session you influence people so that they could adopt a different strategy or improve right away their work, and why not, their daily life.


#3. Pay attention to details

When you apply, make sure you have an excellent title, a clear description of what you want to present and a strong personal bio.

Make sure your title is not generic. Don’t use “Unit Testing” as a title for your workshop. You do not have enough time to teach unit testing in 90 minutes. Try something like “Unit Testing Crash Course” if it is for beginners. If you designed a workshop for an intermediate audience try something like “Unit Testing: stubbing techniques on functional languages”.

The title is strictly connected to the topic of your session. Too often the session title says something different than the content of the abstract. For a title like “Test Driven Development for beginners” we would expect to hear about Evolutionary Design. If you have such a title and you want to teach an unit testing crash course and not Evolutionary Design, then use the appropriate name and change the title to “Unit Testing Crash Course”.

An attractive title that can be intriguing can catch reviewers eyes as well. Instead of using “Unit Testing Crash Course” you could try “Keep your job: learn unit testing now!”


#4. Invest time in your application

Although it might seem at hand, making a proposal takes time. Make sure you follow the guidelines offered by the organizers and when in doubt, ask for more details. Make sure you offer the details requested in the application.

Pitch an interesting subject, and valuable take aways. The audience is at your session to learn about new interesting ideas and concepts.


#5. And a little extra thing 

You’ve seen the call, you got your information in order and you are pretty sure you want to make a submission. In this case, we strongly advise you to make an early submission. In many cases, you will be able to obtain feedback from the organizers. This means you will be able to improve your proposal and increase your chances to be on the speakers list.


Take a step forward and share your knowledge: new ideas, opportunities and glimpses of where the future of the technology lies are needed to challenge  and to improve the daily routine. Looking forward to hear more about your proposed sessions!


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