How it works

Bitnorth happens over a weekend. There’s something special and unique about spending 48 hours with people. You get to know them; you see them scruffy, and build trust. Every Bitnorth has been an amazingly open—and often surprisingly emotional—event.

The short bits

The core of Bitnorth is “short bits”, 10-minute TED-style talks from every attendee. This limits the number of people who can come, creating a small, intimate weekend where attendees can really connect.

We decide on the order of the talks the night before based on tone and flow, trying to find themes and keep a balance between lighter and deeper topics. This short bit board lives in the back of the room.

shortbit-boardOther activities

In addition to the talks, we have a number of icebreakers, tastings, and activities that happen over the course of the weekend. These have included:

  • Powerpoint Karaoke, a perennial favourite and excellent icebreaker.
  • A game show, with the audience voting.


  • Would I Lie To You, based loosely on the British TV program.
  • Laughing Yoga, which all of us promised never to do again.
  • A spontaneous independent film festival.
  • Late-night and early-morning swims.
  • Chair massages and morning yoga.
  • Poker, table tennis, Werewolf, and plenty of other card games.
  • A night-time game of Capture the Flag, with glowing light sabers as flags.


  • Campfires.


  • “Make” contests where people scramble to build structures from household materials (like pasta and marshmallows)


We try to find new activities every year; not knowing what to expect is part of the fun and anticipation.

Disconnect to reconnect