On Wednesday, August 21 (6pm-9pm), join us for dinner, drinks and schwag at the Hackbright Girl Geek Dinner at Pivotal Labs in downtown San Francisco.
Mix and mingle with fellow girl geeks, developers, hackers and more!
Hackbright Academy instructors Cynthia Dueltgen and Liz Howard will talk about being the only woman in the room, and the CAP Theorem.
Versal software engineer Kelley Robinson will share insights from working post-Hackbright Academy.
Current Hackbright students will demo their engineering projects built in the course of the 10-week program.
6:00pm – 7:00pm: Check-In, Dinner, Drinks & Networking
7:00pm – 8:00pm: Tech Talks from Hackbrights
8:00pm – 9:00pm: Project Demos & More Networking!
Cynthia Dueltgen (Instructor, Hackbright Academy)
Cynthia’s first coding happened on an Apple IIe computer her parents bought when she was ten years old, and even before that she was playing Oregon Trail on the PET 32 computers at her elementary school. By age 12, she decided she wanted to either be a rocket scientist or write computer games. She was lucky enough to have parents who never bothered to tell her that girls didn’t do that sort of thing, and eventually got a Computer Science degree from Northwestern University. There she was very active in the Society of Women Engineers and is pretty sure there was at least one other woman in her CS graduating class. She traded the dream of video games for 3D computer graphics and has worked at Pixar, Nvidia, and IDEO. Cynthia is excited to be teaching at Hackbright and can’t wait to help unleash more awesome women developers on the world. You can find Cynthia on Twitter at @cdueltgen.
Liz Howard (Director of Operations & Instructor, Hackbright Academy)
Liz learned to write databases before she learned to write essays. Her parents were both software engineers. After leaving school to work on one of the first EMR programs in the country with her father, she did contract software development until she was old enough to leave home. She had a brief sojourn into Kindergarden teaching, but ultimately couldn’t leave programming. After that, she tooled around building software and leading teams for a number of large corporations, and ended up rewriting most of the fraud prevention systems for 8 of the top 10 banks in the country. Currently, Liz leads and teaches for the San Francisco chapter of Girl Develop It!, a worldwide organization aimed at helping women get into programming. At Hackbright, Liz is teaching, developing curriculum, working on community, operations and strategy. You can find Liz on Twitter at @lizthedeveloper.
Kelley Robinson (Software Engineer, Versal)
After getting a Business degree, Kelley began working in financial operations but soon knew it was not the right fit. What she did know was that she enjoyed solving complex problems, finding creative solutions, and thinking analytically. A peripheral interest in the tech industry transformed into an interest in the technologies themselves as she attended Hackbright and learned Go to build a Database Engine as her final project. She has always enjoyed the challenge of the unfamiliar, and was excited to continue to build her skills and learn Scala as she joined the backend team at Versal. You can find Kelley on Twitter at @KelleyRobinson.
HACKBRIGHT PROJECT DEMOS
Aimee Morgan (Engineering Fellow, Hackbright Academy)
A native of upstate New York who settled in the Bay Area 6 years ago, Aimee holds a B.A. in English from Cornell, plus an M.A. in history and a Master of Science in information science from the University at Albany. Before Hackbright, she worked in academic/research libraries. Most recently, she was the Assistant University Archivist at Stanford, where Aimee helped preserve historic university records and personal papers of prominent faculty (while learning lots of strange/fascinating Stanford history facts.) She realized that working on technical projects gave her a sense of satisfaction far beyond what she got from my day-to-day archivist responsibilities. Aimee started learning Python on her own, but it wasn’t until she heard about Hackbright that she realized a career in software engineering was within her reach. You can find Aimee on Twitter at @poshlost.
Aimee’s Hackbright project: Menu Scout is a web app that allows users to explore 150 years of culinary history via data from the New York Public Library’s “What’s on the Menu?” project. The short version: NYPL is digitizing their collection of 45,000+ historical restaurant menus, putting the scans on their web site, and asking the food-loving public to help provide text transcriptions. All the transcriptions completed to date are available for download. It’s a fascinating, but messy, data set. On the back end, Menu Scout uses data analysis and natural language processing techniques to provide users with new ways to search and browse this unique historical resource. Menu Scout was built using Python, Postgres, SQLAlchemy, Redis, NLTK, Flask and Bootstrap.
Cara Marie Bonar (Engineering Fellow, Hackbright Academy)
Cara has always loved change – a direct consequence of a military upbringing. She hates being bored, and this drive has taken her to some interesting places (ticket scalping in NYC, teaching English in Japan, and harvesting in New Mexico). Before coming to Hackbright, she worked as the senior web designer for an insurance consulting firm. Originally hired as a print designer, she quickly found herself building their sites. The experience proved to be invaluable. As the complexity of the projects increased, Cara found herself delegating the design tasks to junior associates so she could spend more time coding. She found that she loves the potent combination of creativity and problem solving that programming offers. The intellectual engagement doesn’t leave any room for boredom. She wants to continue her programming pursuit with a company that works on real world problems.You can find Cara on Twitter at @cara_bones.
Cara’s Hackbright project: Rootkit is an experimental linux kernel module with an integrated key logger as proof of concept. Communication with the rootkit and key logger is handled by the built-in IRC bot. Features: Toggle keylogger on/off; Print keyboard input log; Show/hide process ids; Show/hide files; Show/hide the rootkit. Requirements: Linux “vanilla” Kernel >= 2.6.29 − tested up to 3.6
Eva Chen (Engineering Fellow, Hackbright Academy)
Eva is a lifelong autodidact. When faced with a challenge where she is short of certain skills or knowledge, she considers them invitations to dive into unknown but interesting fields. For example, when she had an app idea but not the technical and design skills, she spent a whole year learning the foundational skills – then she spent the next year building that app.She holds a B.A. in Interdisciplinary Studies Field at UC Berkeley, where she had an active role in planning my cross-disciplinary curriculum (Psychology, Development Studies and Business). Now she is looking to build great things with a great team/company. In addition to being a full-stack developer, she can specialize in UX on the front-end or in machine-learning on the back-end (where her obsessive curiosity is flourishing).
Eva’s Hackbright project: Your Personal Programmer (Version 0.1) – As programmers, why do we spend all our time programming when we can program a program that can program? Here’s where your personal programmer comes in. Just give it some inputs and test cases, grab a coffee, and a shiny new program will be waiting for you. And if you do end up hiring me in the long run, you get two programmers for the price of one. In version 0.1, it knows the x86 assembly language. It takes in string, int, float or boolean values (no lists or dictionaries yet) for inputs and test cases and outputs assembly code that were processed through genetic algorithms. Tools used: Python, Deap.
Jessica Mong (Engineering Fellow, Hackbright Academy)
Jessica was born and bred in the “New York” of Nigeria and came to the USA to study computer engineering, with a minor in mathematics through the aid of a full scholarship. She coded “Hello World” in C++ for the first time and she was amazed at how you could make things do things with lines of code! She thought of all the issues that she could solve at home with that kind of “super power” and was excited. After volunteering at some conferences and seeing the difference people are making with software, Jessica was inspired to pursue a career in software development. So this summer, she turned down an internship position to immerse myself in a “summer of code” at Hackbright. One of the best decisions she’s made in her short life. You can find Jessica on Twitter at @JEMificent.
Kate Odell (Engineering Fellow, Hackbright Academy)
Kate holds a BS from Stanford in the interdisciplinary Science, Technology, & Society major, which included a technical depth in Computer Science. For the past 7 years, she has been at tech startups in various roles including project management, product management, QA, and support. The parts of these roles she enjoyed the most were the parts that were the most technical and often involved working closely with developers. Kate is currently looking for a role as a full-stack developer that allows her to make significant contributions to a product while becoming a better developer in the process. You can find Kate on Twitter at @kateodell.
Kate’s Hackbright project: Web History is a web app that calculates and displays historical analysis of how HTML tag usage has changed over time. Web History was built with Python using the Flask framework. Postgresql and Redis are used to store and access the data. On the front end, Web History uses jQuery, Bootstrap, and Rickshaw.js. The historical website data is taken from the Internet Archive’s Wayback machine data.
Katherine Fellows (Engineering Fellow, Hackbright Academy)
Katherine was born and raised in Houston, TX, down the street from NASA’s Johnson Space Center. She started her college coursework at the University of Houston-Clear Lake with a focus on education and rhetoric of science, earning a B.A. in Literature (2011). However, immediately after graduation, she missed studying more technical subjects, and returned to school for a second degree – this time, a B.A. in Mathematical Science (2012). Having found a closer fit for her interests, Katherine began graduate work in discrete and applied mathematics at Sam Houston State University. Initially, she intended to pursue a career in teaching, but while assisting with a discrete course for computer science majors, discovered that she would prefer applying her analytical skills to the tech industry instead – so she flew out to San Francisco to attend Hackbright Academy! Now, Katherine has a strong interest in distributed systems and functional programming, and is looking for backend software engineering jobs in the Bay Area. You can find Katherine on Twitter at @kf.
Katherine’s Hackbright project: Dynamite is a distributed NoSQL database engine written in Scala. Dynamite uses Akka actors to accomodate any number of concurrent clients and servers. Clients communicate via TCP with a main node, which distributes and retrieves key-value pairs from the other servers using MurmurHash 3 and a hand-coded consistent hashing algorithm. The main node also accepts and maintains TCP connections with Dynamite’s network of servers; when a new server is added to the network, the main node assigns that server a range of hash values and initiates a migration of existing key-value pairs accordingly. New servers are processed in the order they are added, using a concurrent linked queue.
Melissa Skevington (Engineering Fellow, Hackbright Academy)
After earning her degree in cognitive science from the University of Rochester in New York, Melissa worked at a small company to create a report library for a local bank using Visual Basic for Applications. She learned to code on the job and left after completing a set of 15 dynamic reports VPs used on a daily basis. In February 2012, Melissa became the first female support engineer at Dropbox. After learning the product inside and out, she decided to continue learning to code to have a bigger impact on a product. You can find Melissa on Twitter at @mskeving.
Melissa’s Hackbright project: Kudos! is designed for internal employee recognition. This Flask web app creates a central place where employees can thank other employees for their hard work. Imagine a site where you will see “Thanks Josh for designing the stickers for the conference!” or “Who organized our delicious team dinner last night?” Other employees can tag the appropriate people to make sure they get credit, allowing all employees to get recognition for their contributions rather than just the team leads, creating more positive feedback loops.
Rebecca Bruggman (Engineering Fellow, Hackbright Academy)
Since graduating from UC Davis in 2009, Rebecca has worked with a variety of technology companies in sales and public relations. In each role, she watched awesome technologies get built and realized she wanted to contribute to the creation process rather than pushing out the ideas of others. After talking with many people about their transitions into technical roles, Rebecca knew Hackbright was exactly where she needed to be to become an awesome developer. Rebecca is excited to ideally join a mid-sized company as a full stack developer that encourages curiosity, provides opportunities to learn new technologies and promotes mentorship. You can find Rebecca on Twitter at @BEXcitement.
Riya Modi (Engineering Fellow, Hackbright Academy)
Riya is a student at Georgetown University (‘16) majoring in Computer Science and minoring in Cognitive Science or Economics. She interned at the Stanford Persuasive Tech Lab creating innovative tools to promote peace. She wanted to learn how to actually build what was discussed so she could take her own ideas and continue to create meaningful products. Her computer science classes at Georgetown are taught in C++, and at Hackbright Riya has learned Python. Riya grew up in the Bay Area, and attended Castilleja High School in Palo Alto. She enjoys solving puzzles, understanding how elements of the real-world actually work, trying new things (resulting in the decision to attend college across the country), and devouring cheese platters. You can find Riya on Twitter at @riya2d2.