Cover image for Announcing Software You Can Love 2023

Posted on

Announcing Software You Can Love 2023

Software You Can Love (SYCL) is coming to Vancouver, Canada, June 7-9.

I really can't get enough of these "software as an art" (SaaA?) conferences that I've been fortunate to attend. It started for me with Handmade Seattle 2021, and I can't get enough.

Personally, I've grown as someone who makes software. It's not that I can write faster, or tackle more difficult LeetCode problems, it's that I'm more conscious of the process of creating software, seeing the ramifications of decisions with greater clarity. Instead of asking "what search algorithm should I use for x", I'm asking stuff like:

  • Is anyone ever going to use this?
  • How is this project going to sustain itself?
  • How do I best craft this feature to make Johnny smile?

It's through meeting others at these “SaaA” conferences, having discussions that you'll think back on months later, that we can work to collectively improve the stuff we ask and thus the art we make. An event that comes to mind is Loris Cro’s "Software You Can Love" 2022 in Milan, Italy; it was an absolute banger.

The premise of SYCL is that to create "good" or lovable software, you must prioritise the end-user. The announcement for last year's event delves more into the concept, but what you end up with is a unique mix of art and technology. Honestly, it reminded me why I joined this industry in the first place.

We have a massive problem though: Loris wants to wait until April 2024 because "Italy is nicer in April." Instead of waiting another year and a half, I'm going to run an instance of SYCL where I live: Vancouver.

The first day of the event will feature Zig talks, the second will consist of SYCL talks, and the final day will have one or two workshops.

Why have a dedicated Zig talks day?

I know that it might seem weird that there's a Zig talks day with Zig not being in the name of the conference, but there's a philosophical and pragmatic reason for this. Philosophically, "software you can love" was originally coined by Loris Cro (he's the VP of Community for the Zig Software Foundation), and I see Zig as a project powered by these ideals. Pragmatically, I believe you need to have grounded technical talks alongside whimsical/unhinged talks to achieve conference magic.

If you aren't interested in Zig but are interested in the rest of the event, I still advise you to attend the first day. One of the guiding principles of the Zig community is to focus on the problem, not the language, so if you have a technical background you'll be able to follow and get something out of these talks.

Call for Speakers

If you're interested in speaking, please see the Call for Speakers page for more info. Additionally, there will be up to two workshops available for people to choose from: one will be an introduction to Embedded Zig, and the other is yet to be filled (perhaps you could help with this?)


Ticket sales will be up by the end of the month, and they'll be structured similarly to SYCL 2022: There will be a ticket for the first two days of talks, and a separate ticket if you'd like to attend one of the workshops.


This event will take place at Emily Carr University of Art + Design. The campus and theatre are gorgeous and sit between a number of great areas in Vancouver:

Emily Carr's Reliance Theatre

Top comments (5)

andres profile image

Thanks @mattnite this is going to be awesome! I will definitely join.

kristoff profile image
Loris Cro

The location looks awesome.

marler8997 profile image
Jonathan Marler


r4gus profile image
David Sugar

Awesome news :) might be a great opportunity to also visit my relatives

wilsonk profile image

Looks good. I am in Calgary, but I can probably make it out there ;) Hope to see everyone there.