Impressions of ThingsCon Amsterdam 2017

ThingsCon Amsterdam 2017 (November 30th & December 1st) was yet another successful edition of the conference. On this page we have gathered reports, interviews, and other types of media’s from the event. If we have missed a report, let us know!

In addition to the materials below, Mirko Ross did a report (in German) about the conference; Simon Höher wrote a “Looking Back” report on Medium; Dries de Roeck shared his thoughts about the event; Martijn de Waal did a write-up on his session, and Diderik van Wingerden did a post about his session in Open Source Innovation. The guest from Forum Virium Helsinki wrote this post (in Finnish). Melissa and Koen from Hike One shared their thougths in this post.
Co-organiser Iskander also did a look back post and combined it with a view on ThingsCon in 2018.

Fast Moving Targets were at ThingsCon Amsterdam 2017 where they did live interviews with some of the speakers and session leaders, check them out here. All pictures can be found at our Flickr-page.




Thursday November 30th


Iskander Smit kicked off the conference with his keynote on Things as Citizens in the Inclusive Smart City.



Marcel Schouwenaar shared his thoughts on Algorithms and Accountability in the Smart City.



After the conference Marcel and Iskander reflected on the whole conference in this interview:


Alexandra Deschamps-Sonsino had her talk “Action:Notes on the development of the IoT certification mark”.


Alexandra was also interviewed by FMT.


Scott Jenson from Google’s Physical Web wrapped up the keynotes of the day.



Talent Night

After the last keynote of the first day, there was time for the new element to the program – the ThingsCon Talents! Below you can see different elements of the very successful ending to the first day.



We had 18 workshops/in-depth sessions on day 1. We share here some the impressions and if applicable source of presentations, reports and results.


Prototyping the Useless Butler – Machine Learning for IoT Designers

Find all resources for the workshop at this repository. And find a report on Leapfrog blog.

Kars gave an interview on the workshop:


Dowse: IoT awareness box

Denis ‘Jaromil’ Roio, one of the people behind Dowse was interviewed.


Learn and ideate for the IoT with Tiles Toolkit

Simone Mora: It was really great to introduce the Tiles IoT Toolkit ( to such an engaged and creative crowd of designers and researchers. In just two-hours time, participants in four groups managed to develop, pitch and discuss an IoT product idea to improve life in cities. We also got great inspiration for future development of our tool and established plans for new collaborations.

Photos taken during the workshop. And the slides.


GDPR for Things

In this workshop Saskia Videler and Rob Heyman introduced the attendees in the changes of GDPR. Saskia did an inteview at FMT:


Exploring LPWA with NB-IoT

T-Mobile did an introduction to NB-IoT. Ewout Karel did a talk on Friday, and was interviewed.

T-Mobile organised a workshop to give people the possibilty to create a hello-world for NB-IoT. Interested, you can apply for a starterskit at


The Power of Open Source Innovation

Diderik van Wingerden did a session on open source innovation and open hardware developments. His reflections on the conference:
A really great conference with interesting sessions and smart people. In my workshop on Open Source Innovation participants really wanted to understand in detail how to create Business Models on Open Source, the advantages and disadvantages and how to apply this knowledge for their own ideas and use cases. Welcome to the future!

His presentation and impressions can be found here:


IoT for the home – from doorbell to coffee machine

In this session four presentations on specific products by Clay, Openr, The Artificial and Sophisti. Find the report from Clay here.


Democracy by Design

Interview with Gerd Kortuem.


#iotmark : a certification mark for #iot

The work on #IoTMark is continuing. Thomas wrote a report on the session at


Make it happen in China

Bob Wang flew in from Shenzhen. Here an interview.

Jann de Waal was also at the session sharing the plans from Creative Holland.





Friday December 1st


Tobias Revell did the first keynote of the second day of the conference.


Ewout Karel from T-Mobile did a very enthusiastic talk.


Rob van Kranenburg spoke about the Next Generation Internet and what it is.


Bart Ahsmann from CLICKNL presented the Knowledge & Innovation Agenda.

Nazli Cila did a interesting talk about Products as Agents.


Iohanna Nicenboim talked about Thing-Centered Specualtions for Everyday Futures.

Jasmina Tesanovic lifted her research on a gender-critical perspective of of present and futuresmart design.

Ugo Vallauri discussed our products’ lifetime.

There was an interview session with Wienke Geizeman from The Things Network.

Alexandra Dechamps-Sonsino & Bruce Sterling did the closing thoughts of the conference.



Reporting from the eight workshops.

The Battle of Iot Cards

Dries writes: It was very enjoyable to talk about IoT idea generation with people who are familiar with ideation and design processes in practise. Looking back, this workshop was everything I expected from it. We were able to introduce several IoT specific ideation methods ( and managed to dive deep into reflecting on the relevancy and value each of the tools bring.

Dries De Roeck was interviewed.


How to Develop a Citizen Centered IoT

Martijn de Waal wrote a extensive report.

Mara Balestrini was interviewed.



ThingsCon Amsterdam 2017 was sponsored by