There is an old adage in the DEF CON Community, "DEF CON is what you make it", that holds very true to this day. If you yearn to stand out in the DEF CON crowd, or just want to help contribute to this crazy gathering we have every year, there are a number of ways you can get more involved with the con.
Start a Contest
Contests are a huge part of the DEF CON experience, and you may be surprised to know that most, if not all of them, started with a crazy idea someone proposed on the forums and brought to life. Submit a contest application through the Call for Contests and Events (Opening Early 2019)!
Submit a Talk
Do you have an exciting piece of research the hacking community needs to know about? Consider submitting to the DEF CON Call for Papers (opening soon). If you need some pointers on the best way to submit, direct from the person who accepts them, have a gander at Nikita's post on the Speaker's Corner page, "How do I make my CFP stand out?". Check out the rest of the speaker's corner page too, it has some great advice from folks who have been through it! Check out the CFP for DEF CON 26 (Opening Early 2019)!
Answer the Call for Music
Are you musically gifted? We have a Call for Music every year (Opening Early 2019), and if accepted, you might get to play one of our many events and parties.
Throw a Party!
At DEF CON 21, the DEF CON Pub Crawl was born. Basically, we hand out a bunch of rooms in a central location of the conference area to groups who want throw a party. You'll need to send us an application, similar to a CFP, that tells us why we should pick your party. We'd recommend you go with a theme, or something cool that stands out. DEF CON will set up a few cash bars lining the hallways in pub row, so party goers can get their refreshments, it's up to you to provide the atmosphere. We'll post a Call for Parties (Opening Early 2019), so apply and show us what you've got!
Offer a Hand
There is plenty of work to be done behind the scenes at DEF CON, and many Goons were borne of a desire to pitch in. Ask around to find the right people and offer your help.