Handmade Folks,

We're three months from Handmade Seattle 2022, which starts November 16th. Let's discuss tickets, the famous language ban, our new Conference Guide, a new discount system for struggling attendees, and the schedule so far.

Ticket Sales: Running Out ~1 Month 🚨

You can still register for Handmade Seattle, and you should do it soon!

Given the current rate of registrations, we expect to sell out of tickets in one month. This was in part due to the crazy interest after we announced the language ban (more on that later.) We're also running out of the online track, which surprises people, but we don't sell unlimited online tickets. There's a cap.

If we somehow still have tickets one month from now, we are raising prices by October instead of November. These are the current offerings:

Soon we'll raise tickets to $200 and $60 (if we don't sell out first)

The reason shouldn't surprise us: operating costs have gone up this year. We need to adapt to afford putting on a good show. If the reader is on the fence, consider that Handmade Seattle is ridiculously affordable even after the upcoming price hike. At the time of writing:

  • PyCon charges $400 for a standard ticket.
  • The cheapest expo pass for GDC is $349, and an all-access pass is $2,199
  • A student ticket for CppCon is $450 (!) meanwhile the Full Conference registration is $2,175

And let's not forget these conferences have huge company sponsorships and we don't have any. Handmade Seattle is:

  • Independent: I'm a systems programmer putting on an event for other systems programmers.
  • Hybrid: We are popular for treating online attendees as first-class citizens.
  • Live-Streamed: We stream the conference for free and use closed captioning whenever possible.
  • Freely-Accessible: We upload our professional recordings for free and under a Creative Commons license.
  • Privacy-First: Our private chat server encrypts your conversations. We also process your tickets in-house and generate the invites ourselves (I wrote my own conference server.) We still use Stripe or PayPal for the payments.

And on top of all that we added two new features this year:

  • Job Booths: Physical and virtual booths for companies that want to hire you.
  • A Third Day: After two days of talks and demos, we have a third day exclusively for social hangouts (opt-in), organized by yours truly.

Honestly I'm starting to think I'm charging too little! I'd ask that you register before another glass of ChocoVine makes me change approach ;)

Banning Language Advert Talks ⛔

In a passionate Twitch stream I explained why Handmade Seattle 2022 won't allow presentations designed to promote adoption of a programming language:

Forgive me, Eddie

Instead I'm encouraging language designers to give a talk on building software: if what they're building happens to use their new language then that's fine. In fact I have a theory: this indirect way of promoting a language is the optimal way. It's like how the best way to advertise an engine is showing a successful game which leveraged it.

The details behind the ban are in this video. It's polished and < 20 minutes.

Your Conference Guide 📕

The legendary Miblo annotates the episodes of Handmade Hero by Molly Rocket Inc. Miblo's annotations are incredibly useful to navigate videos, so I've hired him to work on a Conference Guide which we've finally published!

Search for a keyword to find any videos mentioning it

Once you select a video you'll be taken to a special player, called Cinera, where you can trivially browse the timestamps that interest you:

Searching for "DOD" earlier landed me here

In each video, you can filter the timestamps such as "hey show me timestamps that only talk about parsing." You can also click on reference material that a speaker mentions:

Andreas talked about the Intel Xeon, so you can click on the specs website right away

Finally, if you scroll down you'll see you can download the video:

Always backup your favorite videos!

There's still more cool features I'm ignoring for brevity. Creating this Conference Guide took us about a month and it shall replace the old Media Page. Miblo was very responsive to my requests and was a pleasure to work with. There's something about this system that breathes life into old videos, doesn't it?

NOTE: The Cinera "experience" is optimized for desktop, but if you're in a pinch it supports mobile too.

New Discount System

We always offer discounts to struggling students and the financially disadvantaged. In the past the process was tedious and unfair: usually we just offered partial refunds after someone bought the full ticket. I've now upgraded my server to natively support discounted tickets. Now all we have to do is generate an invite and the attendee pays for the ticket with the discount already applied:

Discounted ticket for students in need

If you're in a tough financial spot, send me an email. We've all been there. The discounted physical track is $99 and the discounted online track is $30. Although we can't offer free physical tickets, we can offer free online tickets for those still finding these prices unaffordable.

I never ask for much evidence about someone's struggles. This is through an honor and trust system. I only request that people who can actually afford full prices (including sponsors buying someone a ticket) don't abuse this system.

Conference Schedule: Ongoing

We've added new names to the schedule and are still filling in slots. Now that we're properly closer to the event I'm accelerating the search and sorting process of all the speaker & demo proposals. I'm also preparing the budget to award travel stipends to the speakers who need it.

Ink & Switch was on the Handmade Dev Show

Some of you are waiting patiently for my responses to your proposals. Others are perhaps wondering if I'm still looking for speakers, demos, and job booths. The answer is yes! Don't be afraid to reach out! And if you've already reached out, I'll be in touch with you this month.

Yours truly,
Abner