Back from OSCon

Filed under: travel — jlm @ 16:45

I’m back from the O’Reilly Open Source Conference in Portland. The conference was great but surprisingly tiring. There were a huge number of people there. The exhibit hall was pretty small, and there were many (about 10) sessions going on at a time. Contrast this with say the Unicode Conference, which had a much larger exhibit hall, but only three sessions at a time (and a much lower attendance). Or compare to SCALE, which had a small attendance, but a small exhibit hall and many sessions, like OSCon.

I prefer the Unicode Conference model; with the way OSCon is set up, you always feel like you have to give up something you want to attend when you go to another session. With just three sessions at once, you only occasionally have that feeling. But I guess the big problem is that Open Source is such a wide audience that you need a ton of sessions to capture the appeal of enough people.

As my employer paid my way, I’m going to be talking about some of the more interesting sessions on its blog (link forthcoming) instead of here. Some good sessions, good conversations, good people make for good times. And it was very nice to be back visiting the Portland area again. The MAX system has grown and is impressive — too bad Angelinos are so dismissive of public transit, they don’t know what they’re missing (whereas I do, ugh). I finished up with a nice short hike in the Gorge to McCord Creek Falls; I was worried about the heat, but under the forest canopy it was nice and comfortable.

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