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Well that went quickly.  2012 is almost over and we have a lot of activity to squeeze in already for 2013.  Connect 2013 is fast approaching and this year there are more new Nerd Girl speakers than ever, from Social to Development to Training and Administration – we’ll be there on stage and up with the Gurus at Gurupalooza.  Come and say hi.

Hopefully we’ve had a chance to meet some of you this year and maybe you’ve made it to one of our Sparks sessions at user groups around the world.  We have our own youtube channel of Sparks sessions now and we’re really proud of how well they are received.  So we want to start 2013 with more Sparks! Yes we’re very pleased to announce that Spark Ideas brought to you by Nerd Girls is coming to Connect 2013.

For those of you who don’t know about Sparks, in the space of an hour we ask 6 or 7 people who are prepared to talk for 6 minutes with only a microphone and a single slide for backup.  The rule, male or female, is that your story should be inspirational.  From the feedback we get after each session people love to hear from you and if you think you’d like to submit a Sparks abstract to speak for 6 mins at Connect 2013 and maybe make a difference to someone’s life (or just make them think / laugh / happy) then we want to hear from you and will asking you to email your ideas into info@nerdgirlsgroup.com.  We are also hoping to have an accompanying Birds of a Feather session after Sparks where we can discuss the ideas that come up.  If you can’t make it to Connect , then thanks to Chris Miller we should have all the content available in our youtube channel soon after the conference.

If you have been to the previous three Lotusphere’s then you know us Nerd Girls love our badges, and not just us, we’ve handed badges out to hotel staff, Disney cast members, flight attendants and our colleagues back home.  This year we have a whole new set of badges coming as well as a few old favourites so if you want some just come and find us.  If you are holding a user group or another event in 2013 and would like some badges for that, please let us know so we can be sure to put some aside for you.  Oh and the badge slogans aren’t set in stone yet so if you have some good ideas, again our email is info@nerdgirlgroup.com.

Finally, we’re really excited to be bringing back the hugely successful Great Geek Challenge for the 3rd year running.  Being held once more in the Fountain restaurant in the Dolphin from 8pm – 10pm on Tuesday night this quiz to find the mightiest of all geeks is fun and loud and not to be missed.  There are nerd as well as geek questions, lots of prizes and a fair amount of competitiveness.  The restaurant only holds 80 people so get there early to get a table.  For those of you who can’t make it to Connect, the uber Xpages Nerd Girl developer Kathy Brown has updated our online Great Geek Challenge quiz.  We’ll be having a weekly quiz with prizes online starting next week and, after the conference, we’ll be posting the questions and answers online too.  There’s no excuse, not even a restricted travel budget, not to make it.

So that’s what 2013 has in store, we hope to see you at Connect or one of the user groups around the world.    If you’re organising or part of a user group and you want to set up a Sparks session or just talk Nerd Girls, please get in touch. The rest of you, get your Sparks ideas ready, grab a badge and pull up a table at the Great Geek Challenge.

See you soon