I love sharing and growing as a public speaker. Recent talks center around the human aspects of open source software contribution, though my favorite to date is on the data side of Community programs. Please reach out if you’d like to have me as a featured speaker. My speaker biography is here.


Here are some personal favorites throughout the years.


One of the main ways I coped with being away from in-person events was by stepping up my contribution to the Kubernetes community. That week-over-week showing up grew into us forming a subgroup to the SIG Contributor Experience where we bring Marketing expertise to the upstream project. It also resulted in an opportunity to share that vision at KubeCon NA on the maintainer track.

State of the Source

I was proud to be able to speak at the first conference hosted by the Open Source Initiative (OSI), who do such great work to support the open source ecosystem.

This talk was an update to my vision on communication channels, acknowledging IRC is not where future contributors will be lingering for most open source projects. It includes communication maps with the ideas around linking sync, async, in-person, and news events into a complete communication vision.

Slides are available here:


I checked a career goal checkbox with my first talk at this internationally-reknown show. It was my first draft of explaining the importance of accepting open source contributors no matter where they come from and what tools they are comfortable using. To do that, we need to stop defaulting to IRC as the primary communication channel and shift toward beautiful and simple asynchronous options.

I enjoyed the reception—in favor and against—as I find a way to advocate for inclusivity and acceptance that open source is not reserved for those who use any single platform.


In a revision to the metric talk from ATO, I focus in on the importance of comparison to make an effective argument for communities.

The updated version is here:

All Things Open

The metrics behind Community and DevRel programs continues to be a curiosity of mine. Our field has seemed to define the internal improvement mentrics quite effectively, yet struggles to provide external business value to those who aren’t deep “in it.”

I’m proudest of the use of an analogy: that our use of data is similar to behaviorist psychology, which can provide incentive but has no explanation for human experience. An effective metric is like Gestalt psychology, where the whole is more than the sum of its parts.


I had the honor of keynoting the final Virtualization Technology User Group, which was the first community event I ever volunteered at. I was given the “tough love” spot where I was asked to make people think about what they need to learn to build there careers beyond virtualization. From the feedback received, I succeeded with Cloud, DevOps, Coding, and other Sysadmin fads.

A big thanks to Chris Williams for the invitation.


The incredible duo of Mary Thengvall and J. Paul Reed put together the first conference dedicated to Resilience Engineering. It was an honor to share a story of our resilient community at Sensu and to speak on personal resiliency as learned by some recent events. Sign up at the event website to hear about future shows. Huge thanks to Jessica Kerr for her live annotation of the talk.

Original slides are here:


I had the spontaneous and incredible opportunity to present a lightning talk at Monitorama 2018 in Portland, OR. The title of this one is Recruiting Open Source Contributors: a lesson from Benjamin Franklin because of my love for the psychological phenomenon that is the Benjamin Franklin Effect. In it I hit home the power of asking for help along with some of the ways GitHub makes asking easier to do.

Original slides are here:

Open Source 101

In “Don’t Go It Alone: Recruiting Contributors,” I give a 40 minute bootcamp in GitHub practices that lead to contribution to open source projects. This show was particularly fun since it hit the cross section of professionals and college students learning open source. It also gave me an opportunity to share the tactics, technological and psychological, to make recruiting contribution easier for everyone involved. Keep an eye on Open Source 101 - it’s a great way to give back to our community.

Slides for this one are here:

Community Leadership Summit

Keynoting at Community Leadership Summit was truly a joy. I’ve had this story of how Community’s value is less obvious compared to other departments for some time, and this event gave me the opportunity to express it to an audience that needs to hear it. Understanding the way each of us choose to position our community’s value through metrics is the difference between a well-funded program and an inevitable reorg. One of my favorite points, on baselining the value of stickers as compared to paid advertisements, was caught in this tweet:

Some of my best slides yet are in the deck, hosted here:

Boston VMware User Group (VMUG)

This keynote answered the question “what do you get when you cross career advice with buzzword bingo?” I went back to my old haunts of Boston to share a story of terminology, evolution of technology, and to make a plea for people to embrace open source to future proof their careers.

Slides are on my old Slideshare account: “Where do we go from here?”.

An incomplete list of earlier talks

Speaker profile

Events require brief profiles about speakers. Here’s my default for when those requests come in.


You can download this picture of me for any event pages.


Matthew is currently the Director of Product Management for Production Engineering at Target scaling systems and psychological safety. He specializes in designing software portfolios that benefit from open and inner source practices.

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Matthew has been a maintainer for Kubernetes and CHAOSS communities, a serial podcaster best known for the Geek Whisperers podcast, and co-built the the DevRel Collective.