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Re: FOSDEM Aftermath - the talks


From: Gregory Casamento
Subject: Re: FOSDEM Aftermath - the talks
Date: Wed, 11 Feb 2009 01:13:49 -0500

Lars,

It hasn't happened yet.  I have the materials prepared and should get the banner and everything else on this coming Monday.   Jesse has been helping with the artwork.  I am also working with him on getting the brochures ready.

SCALE is from the 20-22 next week. :)

The hotel is reserved, plans are made.... I shall report back what happens when I come back.  It should be a great week. :)

GC

On Tue, Feb 10, 2009 at 6:36 PM, Lars Sonchocky-Helldorf <address@hidden> wrote:
I'll write a couple of mails to the list during the next days covering several aspects (talks, the Dev-Room, the hotel and so on) of FOSDEM. I also recorded all sessions on video and I'll post them on some online video portal when I am done with some basic editing (adding a title mainly) of them.


Some general words:

- It was fun. All the work and dispair (because of the very slow start I was several times at the brink of giving it all up) finally paid of.

- Giving talks is fun. It was my first time and despite I had some crashes to fight during my talk it still was fun. I felt very content after it.

- It's really nice to meet all the people you usually talk to only at the mailing list and the chat. Especially the dinner at saturday night is always a highlight (we went to a pretty decent indian restaurant this year)

- Quite some people asked for a Live-CD of GNUstep. I know there are (were?) several ones, we had none. Also, most Live-CDs seem to be a little bit out of date meanwhile (at least that's what people told me). So it would be nice to have some good and up to date Live-CDs next year (Étoilé-folks and Gürkan are you listening?).


Talks/Presentations:

Interest was higher than I originally expected (I was going for the smallest room available if you remember), it was most of the time more than two-third full, in some talks the attendees even stood in the aisles. I also learned that it seems to be very important what headline you give to your talk. The more the attendees can imagine what the talk will be about the more likely they are willing to come. Being somewhat catchy here certainly helps while if you're using to many cryptic acronyms nobody knows (and if it's to early in the morning) you'll probably end up giving a private talk to some single person (despite giving a good talk) ;-)

I have not exact counts or statistics but I had the impression that the Étoilé talk drew the most people, despite the somewhat difficult circumstances (basically, the "Pragmatic Smalltalk" talk was given twice, once via iChat by David Chisnall and the second time by a helpful friend of the Étoilé people (Sorry, I am not sure about his name - although having seen him the years before - was it David?)). Interesting here is also that nobody went out when not the originally planned "Étoilé" talk but he "Pragmatic Smalltalk" talk was given.

I also noticed that knowledge about GNUstep is still no very widespread. While we weren't getting those notorious "Ah, GNUstep, I use window maker too!" remarks we usually have gotten at the stand in the years before, the folks who came to the talks - already knowing GNUstep, otherwise you don't go to a talk I think - still were not aware of many things GNUstep has to offer. You always can impress them with Gorm for instance, most didn't know that and what GNUstep offers for theming nor do they know details about the frameworks. In essence you approach a lot of them at a quite basic level. O.k. there are some OPENSTEP veterans mixed in but a lot of the attendees would benefit from practical lessons about what for instance GNUstep base and GNUstep gui have to offer. Basically you have to give your attendees a reason to use GNUstep (for instance faster/easier app development, integration of apps created that way into their desktop environment of choice - develop once, deploy everywhere and such things). If you can offer them some benefit I think they'll be convinced. But that message has to be spread.


If you have some more questions just ask.


Now I also have a question. Greg, you announced that you would attend SCALE. How did that work out? Can you write a little bit about it?



regards,

       Lars


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Gregory Casamento
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## GNUstep Chief Maintainer
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