It started with Arjen doing the last lightning talk at OSDC 2008… a quick show of hands on who else had dealt with (or was dealing with) depression. Everybody had a look around, and thus knew that they weren’t alone. Afterwards, there was more positive feedback which continued over email in the days that followed. Someone suggested starting a group, and the same day bluehackers.org was born.
The objective of this initiative is to make visible that there are many fellow geeks among us who are intimately familiar with depression, anxiety, or bipolar disorder. It helps to know you’re not alone. And it’s not because we’re geeks, but because we’re human. The Australian BeyondBlue site is of course an excellent resource, but, because geeks have a specific work environment, there are also particular challenges in dealing with these issues, and that’s where we feel our group can help with additional insights, tips, and posts from others with experience. Using the logo, we can also make the topic visible at meetings and conferences around the world, ensuring that indeed no geek need feel alone in this, or feel unsupported. They can simply look around and see. Anybody will be able to show their support and understanding, in a kind and non-intrusive manner.
The bluehackers.org logo is derived from the Hacker Emblem (we adapted an SVG design by Keith Packard), which in turn is based on the Glider from Conway’s Game of Life. In our version, the glider moves towards more freedom, and from the darker into a lighter region. You get the idea… appropriate banners and other artwork will come, as will expressions of the logo on appropriate media. Please don’t just go off on your own creating swag, contact us. Same applies if you would like to be involved in another capacity (such as contributing on the website – and yes you can do that anonymously), or if you would like to help pay for stickers and other goodies, and our free psychologist service at conferences. Thanks!
You can reach us at: i n f o (at) b l u e h a c k e r s (dot) o r g