Cyborgs Unite!
a talk by Karen M. Sandler

When I discovered at a young age that I had a life threatening heart condition, the last thing I expected was to have to worry about software. Now, with a heart device implanted in my body, I have come to understand not only how vulnerable medical devices are but how we are making critical choices about software that will have huge societal impact.

I will also touch on potential avenues for accountability, transparency, and access to remedies as we hurtle towards an Internet of Things built on proprietary source code that prevents us from knowing exactly how these vital devices work, what data they are collecting and to what ends, what their vulnerabilities might be, and the extent to which their closed, proprietary nature keeps us from developing societal mechanisms and review processes to keep us safe.

This talk is suitable for both beginner and advanced Pythonistas.

Karen M. Sandler

I'm the executive director of the Software Freedom Conservancy, which is the nonprofit home of over 40 projects, including Git, Samba, QEMU, Selenium and Inkscape (to name a few).

I'm known as a cyborg lawyer for my advocacy for free software as a life-or-death issue, particularly in relation to the software on medical devices. Prior to joining Conservancy, I was the executive director of the GNOME Foundation. Before that, I was the general counsel of the Software Freedom Law Center.

I co-organize Outreachy, the award-winning outreach program for women globally and for people of color who are underrepresented in tech. I'm also a pro bono counsel to the Free Software Foundation and GNOME.