even quite some time has already been passed after Open Source Days 2013 in
Copenhagen (Denmark), I would like to spend a view words about it. I flew
on the day before the event from Stuttgart to Copenhagen (interestingly it
is more cheap to spend a night in a hotel than to simply fly a day later).
At the early Saturday morning, I moved with our swag and booth material to
the Copenhagen Business School (CBS) - one of the largest business schools
in the whole nordic area (15.000 students, 900 employees). As in the years
before, the team of the Open Source Days did already do a great job: They
completely set up the area for booths, thus we were able to pick our table
there. And in difference to my very first Open Source Days (OSD) event in
2010, they meanwhile have commercial exhibitors right next to the community
guys. This is really a great improvement from my point of view :)
Of course, Mads Kiilerich was also around. He is from Copenhagen and (from
my point of view) he would be a great Fedora Ambassador, but he refuses to
get one while focussing more on technical stuff. Nevertheless he is really
a smart guy, who knows how to talk proper about Open Source, Free Software
and Fedora. He also talked to quite a lot of the people in Danish, while I
had to ask visitors to speak in English. Even I my Danish understanding is
improving, it's still far from good enough to get everything or even from
regular free speaking. Shopping without outing as a non-Danish person works
usually if I don't get any "new" questions asked ;-)
While setting up the booth, I recognized once again that we should have a
more tiny roll-up that could be carried within regular baggage. All roll-
ups I had easy access to would have been treated as bulky baggage with an
extra fee. Unfortunately the LED projector/beamer wasn't helpful because we
were not located next to a wall. Nevertheless, the blue Fedora tablecloth,
an OLPC XO, two Raspberry Pi and a bunch of Fedora DVD, pins and swag did
the job as well. Stickers were unfortunately not allowed due to experiences
from previous years (I didn't see any abuse in the year they were allowed).
I did not imagine, but the OLPC XO still attracts visitors to come to the
Fedora booth - of course they are more focussed to the hardware. Same is
also applying by the way for the Raspberry Pi. Most of them didn't knew the
status of Fedora and ARM, so there was many news for visitors. Compared to
my first Open Source Days participation the number of Fedora users growed,
but this is subjective not objective as I do not track that. There also was
a larger number of visitors who at least tried Fedora in the past, but did
not like it for different reasons (most common ones are SELinux & systemd).
In the afternoon, I had my talk "How the Fedora Project works". And it was
quite funny to see that some Red Hat guys attended the talk. We ended up
with a larger Q&A section where Fabio answered a nice amount of more Red
Hat specific questions patiently. When I give such a talk the next time, I
will ask for an own Red Hat guy before... ;-) But the most basic question
about Fedora and Red Hat and how they work together was nevertheless raised
a few times at the booth before and after.
To explain why some technical Red Hat guys were around: The 9th Netfilter
Workshop 2013 started on Sunday and thus overlapped with the Open Source
days. They even had an own track for talks on Sunday related to networking
and netfilter. I guess that was the public day, because the whole event is
a closed invite-only 5 days intense workshop for kernel developers.
In front of the event, I received an e-mail by Buddhike Kurera, that he is
in Sweden these days and will likely attend the event - unfortunately he
did not make it (and did also not reply to my latest e-mails). So it was
just Mads and me covering the Fedora booth, but we are quite a good team
for 3 events now.
After the first day, there was a social event again...which mainly ends up
in grabbing free food for dinner and having some nice (also non-technical)
discussions and talks at a beer. Unfortunately they shut down really early
at Copenhagen Business School on Saturday - 10:00 pm for the students cafe.
But it aligns a bit with the rest of the city from my point of view, too.
Getting up early on Sunday morning is always terrible to me, but managed
it and moved to the Copenhagen Business School again and set up the booth
together with Mads. The Sunday forenoon was a bit quiet (as usual), that
was not too bad...I will explain later why.
I gave my talk "Raspberry Pi as appliance" directly after noon and had more
attendees than I expected. Last year my talk was also scheduled directly
after lunch and I had like 10 attendees - while it was more than 40 people
this time. Feels a bit like Raspberry Pi is more interesting that groupware
when looking backwards ;-) Anyway, people are most attracted to hardware,
less to the operating system that runs on it. On the other hand, this isn't
too bad as ARMv5 support is going to be dropped with the end of Fedora 18.
After the talk there were a lot of interesting questions, some dedicated to
the hardware, but some also to software and specific projects like uboot or
PXE boot while having only the minimum on the SD card. Another eye-catcher
was the mini display that was connected to a Raspberry Pi via composite RCA
and running a slideshow with Fedora wallpapers. I was able to get this done
in the forenoon - if you remember, it was a bit quiet there. Unfortunately
it is technically not that attractive as it optically looks, because OpenGL
ES (Embedded System) is not the same as the regular OpenGL, so xscreensaver
killed the system a bunch of times till I figured out this. Finally, fbi(1)
did the trick ("yum install /usr/bin/fbi") via framebuffer.
If you ever asked what happened to the Raspberry Pi that I received from
the Fedora Project during the Summer of Open Hardware 2012, you now know
it. Okay, that's not completely true, I actually did much more with it and
finally discovered my interest in ARM. But these days, the Raspberry Pi is
in use as show-case connected to a small display (thanks to Fedora again).
Mads and I also did two video interviews: One was for a (private?) Danish
TV station, which was handled by Mads and in Danish, because the guy doing
the interview cared about keeping it in Danish - which I of course was not
able to satisfy. But I am very sure that Mads did a great job, even I did
not understand too much except the technical phrases. The other one was for
a video project of a local community group; he didn't care about Danish or
English thus I was able to help him.
After the event we cleaned up our Fedora booth and helped the Open Source
Days team a bit to shut down also their video infrastructure (especially
the powerful cabling between the different floors and inside the rooms). My
talk "Raspberry Pi as appliance" was recorded by the way and will thus be
likely online in the future (it is not yet online). Work done, event was a
success (if this can be measured somehow) and so finally went for a Danish
dinner with Mads before leaving on the next day by plane to Stuttgart. And
know what? No metro outage, no reaching the plane in the last minute - and
no stress with missing baggage like last year.
I unfortunately was very busy the last weeks, but I will upload also some
pictures to http://robert.fedorapeople.org/events/
and you already can find
my presentations at http://robert.fedorapeople.org/presentations/2013/
you are interested.
Finally, thank you, Mads! Without you, this event would definately not have
been possible for me, because doing such an event alone does not work out.
See you at latest next year...waiting for Open Source Days 2014 :)