Geeky Highlights from BlogHer 13


The Girls Code panel that I was on went well. Kimberly Bryant from @blackgirlscode had to miss BlogHer because of a family emergency, but the other three of us forged ahead and we had a good discussion.


Automattic was in the Expo hall and it was fun to talk WordPress with them. Here I am with Automattic Happiness Engineer Karen Alma.


Sheryl Sandberg was a keynoter. She was inspiring! She arranged for Lean In circles to take place after the keynote with her there participating.


I got to meet Majora Carter and have a brief conversation with her. She’s someone who has done so much good in the world, someone I really admire.


Adria Richards brought Glass. She let lots of people try it on, play around with taking video or photos, learn how to scroll through the menus, and just generally see why Glass is cool.


She told me she brought her Glass to Chicago just for me to get to see it, and she did let me try it out several times. Thank you, Adria!

Virginia and Glass. Cool!

I did two sessions in the Geek Bar, which I wrote about yesterday in The Whys and Hows of Two Step Verification.

Although I shouldn’t rightfully count them as geeky, Queen Latifah and Gale Ann Hurd (from The Walking Dead) were awesome.

You can see all my BlogHer 13 photos on Flickr.

The Whys and Hows of Two-Step Verification


I spent the weekend in Chicago at BlogHer13. One of my jobs there was to do a couple of sessions in the Geek Bar on two-step verification. While I have the information at my fingertips, here are the whys and hows of two-step verification


Why is every big company bringing in the opportunity for users to sign up for two-step verification? Horror stories of hacked accounts, mostly. All these companies have made it possible for you to use two-step verification.

  • Google
  • LinkedIn
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • WordPress
  • Evernote
  • Apple
  • Dropbox

Two-step verification adds a layer of security to your account and makes it harder for your account to be hacked.

Once your account has been breached, it can be used to broadcast spam or malicious links. Your password can be changed. Your information can be changed or removed (and there’s no way to get it back). If it is a Twitter or Facebook password that someone has figured out then all the sites that you sign into using Twitter and Facebook have been compromised as well.


You still need a strong password, even if you opt in to two-step verification. Remember that.

If you use two-step verification, here’s how you do it.

  • Sign in to your account on Facebook or Gmail or whatever service you are using. Find the settings in your profile.
  • Sign up for two-step verification and provide your mobile phone number
  • Now, when you go to the site and enter your password to sign in, you may be required to enter a second access code, which is sent to your mobile phone

On Facebook, for example, enable ‘Login Approvals’ from the ‘Account Security’ section of the account settings page

facebook opt in

On Twitter, visit your account settings page. Make sure you have provided a phone number. Check the “Require a verification code when I sign in” box

twitter opt in

Unless a hacker has your phone in his hand, he may have guessed your password, but he won’t have the code that gets sent to your mobile phone.

It depends on which company you are using whether you are asked to enter the second code every time you sign in. If you are signing in from a recognized device, you may not be asked for the second code.

My BlogHer 13 speaking schedule

I'm speaking at BlogHer13

I’m speaking or leading sessions on 3 separate occasions at BlogHer 13 in Chicago. If you will be attending the event, too, come say hello. Here’s what I’ll be doing.

You have two chances to catch me in the geek bar, discussing two-step verification on Twitter and Facebook. Friday morning at 10:30 or Saturday afternoon at 2:30. The geek bar sessions are small and informal and are more of a discussion than a presentation.

Along with Amanda Spann from BRANDSPAN Consulting, Kimberly Bryant from Black Girls Code, and Nelly Yusupova from Webgrrls, I’ll be part of a panel on Girls Coding. The women on this panel are really accomplished and impressive. I’m looking forward to being with them.

Are you going?