Chelsea Troy

By day, writer of code. By night, researcher of software risks. By always, lover of bubble tea.

Chelsea writes code on projects like the Zooniverse Citizen Science Mobile App and the NASA Landsat Image Processing Pipeline. She looks for clients who are saving the planet, advancing basic scientific research, or providing resources to underserved communities. She has been known to take projects in mobile development, web development, and machine learning. She streams some programming sessions to YouTube, so you can watch her code (and narrate!) in real time. She then turns the recordings into educational materials.

Chelsea also teaches Mobile Software Development at the Master’s Program in Computer Science at the University of Chicago. She is the author of chelseatroy.com and a book called Remote Work Sucks (the title is kind of a trap). She organizes two conferences: PromptConf (Chicago area, very technical) and ORD Camp (Chicago area, not nearly as technical).

Chelsea flings barbells around for fun. She drives an electric cafe cruiser named Gigi.

Past Activities

Chelsea Troy
Code Mesh V
06 Nov 2020
22.20 - 23.00

What Counts as a Programming Language?

When we think of programming languages, we think of Java, Kotlin, JavaScript, or Python. We don't think of CSS, SQL, or HTML. And we don't think of Alloy, Modelica, or SNOBOL—in fact, maybe we haven't even heard of all those. But what's the distinction? And maybe most importantly, what can we learn as programmers from "not programming languages"?


The talk aims to show folks what we can learn from questioning how we categorize things rather than ignoring things outside our arbitrary categories. It also aims to help folks understand that most "universal truths" aren't as universal as we might be led to believe—and why it matters.


This talk should appeal to programmers of all stripes!