July 18 2018
A Better Future for Mental Health & Technology
By coming to Anxiety Tech, you will learn how to advocate for mental health at work, how technology can be better designed to support mental health, what technologies are already working to help those who suffer with mental illnesses, and how you or your company can be leaders in this field.
|8:00||Registration / Light Breakfast|
|9:00||Amber Case - The Future of Anxiety and Technology|
Does technology cause anxiety and depression? Or is it our anxiety and depression that draw us to repetitive behaviors? What is it about social media that draws us in, and can we change it? Our every moment has been altered by the advent of the smartphone, but was this the original promise of technology? If we live in a world that we cannot control, can choose how we use our time? This talk will use primary and secondary resources to construct an overview of consumption, distraction and what it means to be human in the disposable age. We'll talk about anomie, time and space, the industrial revolution and media density.
|10:00||Solome Tibebu - Why We Need Innovation in Mental Health Tech|
Historically, mental health hasn’t exactly been known to be the hub of innovation compared to other sectors in healthcare.
Now more than ever, we have an opportunity to innovate in mental health by capitalizing on the changing healthcare
landscapes, consumer demand and risings costs on our society.
|10:30||Pamela Fox - Fight Tech with Tech: Take Control of your Digital Environment|
Taking a break from your always-connected computer and phone can do wonders for your state of mind. But what happens when you inevitably return to the digital realm, and find yourself in a world of advertisements, polarized comment threads, and endless sources of instant gratification? Good news: there's an app for that! Actually, there are a growing number of tools to help you personalize your internet experience to be better for your mental health -- and if there isn't one that meets your needs, you just might be able to code one yourself.
|11:00||Jonathan Sockell - VR Mental Health Startup: From Idea to Reality|
|11:30||April Wensel - Cultivating Compassionate Communities|
If you contribute to open source, attend meetups, or just exist in the tech industry, you are likely a member of multiple
tech communities. Our communities can be an incredible source of strength and comfort. They can support our personal
and professional growth while satisfying a universal human need for belonging. However, in tech, many of our communities
have become exclusionary clubs with unnecessary and unfair barriers to participation. These hostile, ego-driven communities
create ingroups and outgroups, causing shame and stress in members and non-members alike.
|1:00||Jenna Quindica - Living with Bipolar Disorder as a Software Engineer|
Bipolar disorder is one of the most stigmatized mental illnesses. Have you ever wondered what it's like to live with bipolar disorder? Look no further because this talk dives into being misdiagnosed as depression, getting diagnosed as bipolar I, and receiving treatment. All of this is in the context of maintaining a full-time job as a software engineer. Bipolar disorder shouldn't be stigmatized because 2.6% of the American population has it. This talk hopes to pay down the stigma and explain the gifts, too, of bipolar disorder.
|1:30||Jessica DiVento, PsyD - Sorry Not Sorry: Advocating for Mental Health at Work|
1 in 5 Americans live with mental health conditions. Untreated issues can lead to lower satisfaction and functioning at work. So why is talking about it so taboo? Having your employer’s support can make all the difference in this process, and how you approach this conversation is important. This talk will focus on key issues in advocating for your mental health at work, including:
|2:00||Bryan Hughes - Hacking with My Anxiety|
|2:30||Shemika Lamare - Self Care: Avoiding Burnout|
If you are find yourself questioning how to balance your life, know that you are not alone! Working, side projects, volunteering, self-care, personal relationships and so much more are all happening at the same time, and self care can easily get lost in the list! Self Care is an important part of what can keep us fueled and able to complete all the things we want to accomplish. Come add new tools to your toolbox as you figure out what self care means to you and what small actionable items you can do incorporate it into your daily life.
|3:30||Shawn Kernes - Getting Therapy to Those Who Need it Most|
An estimated 50-60 percent of the U.S. population lives in rural areas with limited access to mental health care. Even for
individuals in areas with adequate care, many people including teens and young adults, working couples, and those
with mobility issues are often unable to travel to regular appointments. Continuity of care also becomes a major
issue for students who live part-time on campus and part-time at home, and adults who move or travel frequently for
|4:00||Ada Ng - UX of Wearables in Clinical Treatment for PTSD|
Studies in the use of wearables have promised better diagnoses, patient empowerment, and overall improved health outcomes. But doctors are busy, patients don’t know what date is useful to track, and electronic health records aren’t built to hold wearable data. To better understand that current state of wearable data integration, we studied a clinic that was providing free Fitbits to veterans that were undergoing intensive treatment for PTSD. This program was not only providing the traditional cognitive processing therapy but also wellness, yoga, and art therapy. In this talk, we’ll tell the story of how the Fitbits are used from both patient perspective and the healthcare perspective and discuss how technology and processes still need to change in order to fulfill the promises of better care through wearables.
|4:30||Skip Rizzo - The Evolution of VR Therapy|
Amber “studies the interaction between humans and technology and how our relationship with information is changing the way cultures think, act, and understand their worlds.” She is the author of Calm Technology: Designing for the Next Generation of Devices, Designing with Sound, and An Illustrated Dictionary of Cyborg Anthropology. She is also a consultant, public speaker, visiting researcher at the MIT Center for Civic Media, and fellow at Harvard University’s Berkman Klein Center for Internet and Society.
Skip Rizzo is the Associate Director for Medical Virtual Reality at the USC Institute for Creative Technologies. He researches the design, development, and evaluation of virtual reality (VR) systems to improve clinical assessment, treatment rehabilitation, and resilience. Skip’s work on using VR exposure therapy for PTSD earned him the American Psychological Association’s 2010 Award for Outstanding Contributions to the Treatment of Trauma.
Solome Tibebu is a mental health advocate, social entrepreneur, and founder of Anxiety in Teens, the first online mental health magazine for and by young adults. Solome developed Cognific, a mental health homework application for patients and analytics platform for healthcare providers. She has received multiple awards for her work and has hosted mental health awareness events across the nation.
Jenna Quindica is a multiracial woman, born and raised in Hawaii, who has worked at startups exclusively her whole career. She' s a Cornell- and self-taught software engineer whose focus is on product. Jenna volunteers with Open-Sourcing Mental Illness (OSMI) and the Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance San Francisco (DBSASF).
Shawn is the co-founder and CEO of LARKR an on-demand therapy app. Shawn and his team at LARKR are committed to improving people’s lives by delivering accessible and affordable therapy. He has 20 years experience building startups.
Pamela Fox loves to code and teach others how to code. She created all the free online programming courses for Khan Academy, as well as the full-stack curriculum for Girl Develop It SF. After spending 4 months on a Buddhist retreat and taking a long break from the digital world, she became interested in how to code technology that helps our minds. Pamela then went on to be a founding engineer at Woebot, a chatbot that teaches techniques from Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. These days, she spends her time teaching coding to local schools and coding tools to improve her digital experience. Plus...improv, lots of improv!
April Wensel is the founder of Compassionate Coding, a conscious business that helps technical teams cultivate sustainable, human-centered software development practices built on a foundation of emotional intelligence. She has spent the past decade as a software engineer and technical leader at various startups in Silicon Valley, building products in such fields as healthcare, education, gaming, and user research.
Jon is cofounder and COO of Limbix, a company that provides virtual reality solutions for mental health clinics and hospitals. Previously he worked in marketing leadership roles to rapidly scale growth at KeepTruckin and Medallia. Jon has a BA in Economics from Washington University in St. Louis, and an MBA from Vanderbilt University. His hobbies include golf, travel, Warriors basketball, and scrabble.
Ada Ng is a UX researcher and PhD student from Northwestern University. She studies how sensor data can be used by patients and their healthcare providers in mental health treatment. Currently, she’s at Facebook conducting research on communication in VR. She’s worked as a UX Researcher in consulting specializing in medical devices and at Uptake, a predictive analytics software startup in Chicago. She holds a BS from Cornell University in design.
Jessica is a licensed clinical psychologist & organizational consultant. In addition to maintaining a small private practice in San Jose, she works for CONCERN: EAP as a Clinical Program Manager, at a large bay area tech company, where she serves as a consultant & subject matter expert on mental health strategy.
Shemika Lamare is a Biologist turned Data Enthusiast. She is on a non-traditional path into Data Science and is passionate about the ways that data can be used to improve our society. She wants to ensure everyone is aware of how their data is being utilized and that society is held accountable when using data. When she is not playing with data she is attending conferences, and writing talks to help empower newbies in the tech field.
Mental health affects all of us, regardless of our career, gender, lifestyle, or hobbies. Similarly, technology affects all of us as well, whether we are on the frontlines, designing and programming, or simply using and engaging with it. By coming to Anxiety Tech, you will learn how to advocate for mental health at work, how technology can be better designed to support mental health, what technologies are already working to help those who suffer with mental illnesses, and how you or your company can be leaders in this field.
We are tweaking our code of conduct so that we can ensure it's properly enforcable. It should be back up by Saturday, June 23rd.