Funded! This project was successfully funded on December 14.

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A podcast of conversations with mothers working in technology, sharing our stories, challenges, triumphs, and ideas for change.

The Kickstarter campaign is over! Head over to http://motherboardpodcast.com to continue following the project.

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Motherboard: Connecting Moms in Tech

Women are a minority in tech, and mothers even more so. The goal of the Motherboard Podcast is to share information from one parent to the next, so that each new mom doesn’t have to waste her cognitive resources on problems that have already been solved.

Let’s help isolated moms:

  • feel a sense of connection
  • hear that the challenges they face are more universal than it might feel
  • give each the confidence to find innovative solutions to whatever her unique situation requires.

A handful of amazing women have already agreed to participate in the project, including Shirley Gaw (Google), Jean Hsu (Medium), Doreen Fasen (Microsoft), Máirín Duffy (Red Hat), as well as moms at Apple and Hackbright Academy.

Questions that Need Answering

I have mapped out a questionnaire of topics to ask interviewees, from how they handled announcing their pregnancies, to how they managed morning sickness; from what pre- and post-partum leave they took, to what support their companies and partners provided; from what challenges they faced, to what solutions they used to handle it all.

While I am shooting for as much openness as possible, I will give interviewees the option to request that we avoid any topics they feel uncomfortable sharing. The aim is not to make any one woman bare all, but to allow a multitude of women to share the points of their stories that they feel could help others the most.

Your Help Will Make This Possible

The podcast content will be free for anyone who wants to hear it. But there are real costs incurred when taking the time to produce quality audio content. So to fund the work, I am relying on support from individuals and corporations who support the retention of women in tech during their childrearing years.

My fundraising goal is based on approximately eight hours of work each on a total of six episodes, in addition to initial equipment purchase and setup. Any additional dollars will go towards extending the length of the season. If we raise double the goal, I’ll produce twelve episodes; 4x would allow twenty-four. That would be amazing, and I’d love to make this work my primary focus in 2014.

Rewards

This campaign includes both physical and virtual rewards. Help me pick the podcast theme music ($25), get a hand-screenprinted gocco print of the podcast artwork ($50) or a t-shirt ($100), meet with me on skype for web consultation or mentorship ($250+), or have your company sponsor an episode (or a few!) of the podcast ($750+).

All supporters will be subscribed to the podcast email list, so that you’re among the first to know when each new episode is released. You will also have the chance to toss a name into the hat to be interviewed on the podcast.

Help Retain Women in Tech

If you value improving the retention rates of women in tech, I hope you'll back this campaign. We have a chance to increase the likelihood that the young girls excited about programming today will choose and stick with computer science careers as they think about adding families down the road. I hope you'll join me.

Thanks,
Kathryn

Video background music is Sunrise by Vojtech Komarek.

T-shirt rewards will be printed and sent by Teelaunch.

Risks and challenges Learn about accountability on Kickstarter

The biggest challenge of this project will be to find additional interviewees to meet demand if the goal is surpassed. To address this, I've included the ability to submit suggestions as a backer reward.

FAQ

  • Men clearly face many of the same work-life balance challenges that women do, while navigating a different set of societal expectations. Parents share a common struggle to excel and be fully present at both our work and home lives.

    But men are several times more likely to know other dads in tech. I’m working on solving the problem that moms don’t meet other moms in tech.

    Parenthood in tech is a big puzzle. Let’s start with this piece.

    Last updated:
  • That's what the work hours, equipment costs, reward costs, and Kickstarter/credit card processing fees add up to. See my post sharing the full math here: https://medium.com/what-i-learned-today/3d5dde2fd9f9

    Last updated:
  • I chose the podcast format for a few reasons:

    To start, I really want to give the audience a sense of these women as real people. It is so important for people to see and hear people like themselves as role models. Hearing voices adds a personal dimension compared with written interviews.

    Also, I wanted to create a resource that busy women could consume passively, on their own time, without requiring internet connectivity. The format of a new interview every few weeks is not a barrage of mailing list posts for a busy new mom to weed through; instead one episode at a time is automagically downloaded to her device and she can listen at her leisure. It was important to me that a screen not be required to get the material, so that a woman could listen to it on her commute, or while nursing her baby, etc.

    And for interviewees, it's a format that allows us to have as close to a normal conversation as possible--compared to, say, a written interview where there's time to perfect your wording, or a video series that might make participants feel more self-conscious about their appearance. Podcasts also allow the option of anonymous guests, which become harder to execute with video.

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    Heartfelt Thanks! Receive a big email thank you, the opportunity to suggest an interviewee, and a subscription to the podcast's email list so that you are among the first to know when each new episode is out.

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    Beautify Your Desktop! Receive a large Motherboard Podcast desktop background, the opportunity to suggest an interviewee, and a subscription to the podcast's email list so that you are among the first to know when each new episode is out.

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    Snail mail! Receive a Motherboard Podcast postcard via post. You'll also have the opportunity to suggest an interviewee, and will receive a subscription to the podcast's email list so that you are among the first to know when each new episode is out.

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    Let's make sweet music together. Help me choose the podcast's theme music: I'll share three options, and you'll vote for your favorite. You'll also have the opportunity to suggest an interviewee, and will receive a subscription to the podcast's email list so that you are among the first to know when each new episode is out.

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    Laptop Bling! One Sticker Mule vinyl laptop sticker featuring the podcast logo. AND Let's make sweet music together. Help me choose the podcast's theme music: I'll share three options, and you'll vote for your favorite. You'll also have the opportunity to suggest an interviewee, and will receive a subscription to the podcast's email list so that you are among the first to know when each new episode is out.

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    BLACK FRIDAY! Receive a white crewneck American Apparel t-shirt printed with the Motherboard Podcast illustration. Your size and style (ladies' S-2XL or men's XS-3XL) will be collected before sending your reward, which will be printed and sent by Teelaunch. You'll also have the opportunity to suggest an interviewee, and will receive a subscription to the podcast's email list so that you are among the first to know when each new episode is out.

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    Hand-screenprinted art! Receive a small, limited edition gocco print of the Motherboard Podcast illustration on luscious thick card stock, suitable for framing or display. Print size is A7 (5" x 7") on muscletone (130lb) white French Paper. You'll also have the opportunity to suggest an interviewee, and will receive a subscription to the podcast's email list so that you are among the first to know when each new episode is out.

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    6 backers

    Receive a white crewneck American Apparel t-shirt printed with the Motherboard Podcast illustration. Your size and style (ladies' S-2XL or men's XS-3XL) will be collected before sending your reward, which will be printed and sent by Teelaunch. You'll also have the opportunity to suggest an interviewee, and will receive a subscription to the podcast's email list so that you are among the first to know when each new episode is out.

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    Let's talk! Receive ONE hour of one-on-one consulting via Skype. We can talk about your website, iOS app design and development (my specialty is interface design for children's apps), women in tech, or just get to know each other and have a friendly chat. You'll also have the opportunity to suggest an interviewee, and will receive a subscription to the podcast's email list so that you are among the first to know when each new episode is out.

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    Let's talk! Receive THREE hours of one-on-one consulting via Skype. We can talk about your website, iOS app design and development (my specialty is interface design for children's apps), women in tech, or whatever web business topic you'd like my help with. You'll also have the opportunity to suggest an interviewee, and will receive a subscription to the podcast's email list so that you are among the first to know when each new episode is out.

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    Sponsor an episode! I'll personally thank you/your company for your support of women in technology in the opening introduction, during the podcast and in the end credits. A link to your company will also be permanently included in the episode's show notes on the website. Your sponsored episode will air in 2014.

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    Sponsor TWO episodes! I'll personally thank you/your company for your support of women in technology in the opening introduction, during the podcast and in the end credits. A link to your company will also be permanently included in the episode's show notes on the website. Your sponsored episodes will air in 2014.

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    Sponsor SIX episodes! I'll personally thank you/your company for your support of women in technology in the opening introduction, during the podcast and in the end credits. A link to your company will also be permanently included in the episode's show notes on the website. Your sponsored episodes will air in 2014.

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Funding period

- (30 days)