Astronomy Miniconf

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Astronomy Miniconf Call for Presentations - LCA2015

The Astronomy Miniconf is a one-day stream at LCA2015 focused on the use of Linux and open source technologies in professional and amateur astronomy. The Astronomy Miniconf will be held on the second day of miniconfs, Tuesday 13th January, 2015.

This is a Call for Presentations (CfP) for the Astronomy Miniconf 2015. We are seeking presentations from conference attendees who would like to share their astronomy-related work, projects, and hobby projects with the LCA community.

Please circulate this CfP widely among your open source and astronomy networks to help us reach the widest number of prospective speakers possible.

Submission Deadlines and Dates

Saturday 1st November, 2014: CfP opens

Sunday 23rd November (11:59pm), 2014: Deadline for submissions

Monday 1st December, 2014: Announcement of proposals selected

Monday 5th January, 2015: Deadline to submit presenter slides/notes for review

Tuesday 13th January, 2015: Astronomy Miniconf!

'No pressure' policy

The Astronomy Miniconf is a low-pressure event, and we strongly encourage anyone who has an idea for an astronomy-related talk to submit a proposal even if you’ve never presented at a conference before. Please share this CfP with anyone you know who may otherwise not consider submitting a proposal.

Commitment to Diversity

We are especially keen to present a diverse range of experiences and voices, and actively encourage women and people from other groups that are frequently under-represented at tech events to submit a proposal. Please share this CfP with anyone you know who may fit with this objective.

Suggested Presentation Topics

Any topic which is related to both astronomy and open source technologies is considered on-topic for the Astronomy Miniconf.

Some ideas include:

  • Showcasing your backyard astronomy pictures captured or processed with open source tools
  • A brief demonstration of a cool or interesting astronomy application that runs on Linux
  • Sharing info about your life as a sysadmin managing a high-performance computing cluster in an astronomical research facility
  • A tutorial on post-processing of astronomy photos using open source tools
  • Sharing your work on creating simulations of galaxy formation
  • Anything interesting, cool, or unusual related to astronomy and open source

In addition to presentations from LCA2015 delegates, we are working to source a small number of presentations from New Zealand-based professional astronomers to discuss the open source aspects of their work.

Presentation Format

Presentations will be a mix of 20 minute and 45 minute time slots, with a ‘lightning talks’ session with multiple 5-10 minute mini-presentations. Lightning talks do not require a proposal, you can just present on the day (this is a very low-pressure way to ease yourself into presenting, so please have a think in advance about what you’d like to present).

Need some help?

If you have an idea (or the beginning of an idea) for a presentation for the Astronomy Miniconf, we’d be very happy to talk it through with you to help you develop it further. Email Jessica Smith at or ping her at @itgrrl on Twitter to start the conversation.

Code of Conduct

Anyone presenting at the Astronomy Miniconf is bound by the same Code of Conduct as presenters and conference attendees of the main conference. The full LCA2015 Code of Conduct is at

To help ensure that presentations comply with the Code of Conduct, we require presenters to submit a copy of their presentation/slide deck for review by Monday 5th January, 2015 (one week prior to the start of LCA).

Presenter Responsibilities

Presenters at the Astronomy Miniconf must be registered attendees of the main LCA2015 conference. Presenters are responsible for their own conference registration, travel, and accommodation costs. The LCA2015 committee has made available a small number of miniconf-only passes that we will be using to enable professional astronomers to present who would not otherwise be able to attend.

How to Submit Proposals

Please submit your proposal(s) by email to Jessica Smith at

We encourage you to submit multiple proposals if you have multiple ideas.