This Year at Penguicon


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Planned Events for 2014

When we confirm events that will be happening this year, we will talk about them here!

Previous years have had costume contests, official gaming tournaments, hackathons, learn-to-solder classes, open source brewing, and more.

Check out this year’s programming list, which shows all of the events and descriptions we currently have planned for 2014.

These are subject to change all the way up to and including the convention, as we sometimes have last-minute cancellations of panelists.

2014 Programming

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This is the final, official schedule for Penguicon 2014! At this point, no further changes can be made. If you should need to cancel your event, please email, or visit Ops during Penguicon. Due to possible presenter cancellations, the schedule is subject to change up to and during the convention.  

  • We also have a calendar version of our schedule, and one for each individual track.
  • All presentations submitted, before or after the convention, will be on our Presentations page.




Guests of Honor

Ernest Cline Ernie Cline and the Ecto88

Ernie got his start competing in spoken word poetry slams, riffing on classic nerdy themes, with a poetry anthology coming out this fall.

Ernie wrote Ready Player One – a book about the amazing thrills and dire costs of living in a virtual utopia known as OASIS, and one teenager’s quest to stay alive and win all the marbles.

He also owns a DeLorean – specifically the Ecto88, a recreation with aspects of Buckaroo Bonzaii, KITT and Ghostbusters.

He recently sold a new book AND film called Armada, and wrote the screenplay to Fanboy.

Ernie previously worked as a short-order cook, fish gutter, plasma donor, elitist video store clerk, and tech support drone.


YT Cracker at Ohayocon13, by Vinh VuYTCracker learned BASIC when he was 4.  Now he’s a Nerdcore Hip-hop artist.


BASIC being the clear gateway drug, he cracked several federal and municipal government websites and numerous private companies at 17. After paying restitution, he started remixing sounds from Nintendo games to create his first album, NerdRap Entertainment System.  

He has produced 7 solo albums since then, and at least as many collaborations. YT has performed at CES, the Players Ball and Defcon.

He also runs the record label Nerdy South Records, and makes over 250 tracks available for free.

YTCracker is an official DJ/MC for Facebook, and was an official corporate brand icon for G4TV. (Photo © V.Vu Photography)

Eva Galperin

eva_galperin Eva Galperin is the International Freedom of Expression Coordinator at the Electronic Frontier Foundation.

She has worked for the EFF in various capacities for the last five years, applying her political science knowledge and technical background to organizing activism campaigns, and doing education and outreach on intellectual property, privacy, and security issues.

She recently spoke on the NSA revelations at DEFCON, as well as the Akademy Conference in Bilbao, Spain. Prior to working at EFF, she worked at the US-China Policy Institute, where she helped to organize conferences and researched Chinese energy policy.

She tells us she’s a fan of Science Fiction and, naturally, open source software, and is stoked to join us in May! Eva is currently digging on Constellation Games by Leonard Richardson, and Saga, the epic space opera comic.

In this interview with the Centre for Internet and Society, she says “Unless you are able to speak anonymously, you are not really free to espouse unpopular ideas to people who have the power to do really bad things to you because your ideas are unpopular.”

Hack of Honor: Gameface Labs gamefacelabs

GameFace Labs is bringing their yet-unnamed, Android based, fully wireless VR headset prototype to Penguicon!

They will be bringing their latest 3D-printed model for us to try, and will talk with us about how technology is making it possible to run VR without hitches or tearing on a processor designed for cellphones.

With plans to retail at the end of the calendar year, this is a huge sneak peek on a device that will support up to 60 existing games to start, with more in the works thanks to their SDK.

Check out Engadget’s review from CES, and Gameface Labs’ web site at! (Scroll down, looks like a bug on the page)

Erika Carlson erika_carlson_GOH

Erika Carlson is our latest Guest of Honor for 2014! Along with being a software developer at Detroit Labs, Erika co-founded the Detroit chapter of Girl Develop It, an international group aiming to help women learn software development through mentorship and hands-on instruction.

The Detroit chapter of GDI has over 780 members, with at least 250 of them having already taken introductory development classes with the program.

In addition to her work with Girl Develop It, Erika teaches web development and gives introductory programming presentations at elementary and middle schools.

She is passionate about the potential of technology to create positive change in the world, and is working to create more opportunities for technology education in Detroit.

Check out her interview over at Detroit Labs.