openSUSE sponsorship – Travel Support Program and osc12

openSUSE’s Travel Support Program helps people from all over the world get to their favorite conferences!

One of which is of course openSUSE conference, which this year is held in Prague – A wonderful mysterious city 🙂

I think that this move from openSUSE team helps significantly people travelling from far away (thus having to bear high travelling costs) or people that are not financially flexible to travel abroad to attend the conference.

In both cases it contributes to getting all of us together, so thank you openSUSE!

Being one of the people sponsored to attend osc12, I am only left with the best impressions.

That would be the second time that I am attending openSUSE conference and being reimbursed by openSUSE Travel Support Program and both times I have been so happy to be there!

openSUSE conference is an annual event, during which we get together with friends from all over the world.

So I would say it is not just an event, it is a community-get-together, a meeting point we silently give every year in order to meet, talk, attend presentations and workshops and of course have fun.

I was around Prague a couple of weeks earlier (and that was all Theo’s “fault”) and saw how everyone was working for the conference. It is definitely an endeavor needing time and effort, but most of all what is really needed is individuals that are inspired to help out in order to make this awesome event happen.

I put my two cents offering some help wherever I could. Mostly, however, remote tasks.

As far as I am concerned, big conferences like that need all the volunteers they can get, because the more people, the less work each one has to do. And it is nice to share the tasks, exchange ideas about solving the issues that occur and cooperate to achieve the higher goal. It’s definitely not an one-man show, but a group effort.

It is also a challenge when you get to share tasks with people that you don’t really know, people from other countries and cultures. It is more than just cooperating to get things done, because it offers you the opportunity to meet people with different point of views, different customs and habits and that’s very interesting and insightful I might add.

Congratulations should go to all the people involved – quite a few admittedly, as this year the conference was co-hosting Gentoo Miniconf, LinuxDays and Future Media. So it was really a 4-in-1 conference, which only made it more awesome 🙂

Huge problem though (for me and I guess a bunch of other people): Impossible to decide which presentation to attend – everything is interesting!

I would like to point out a specially inspiring presentation that I attended regarding OpenRelief, a team that focuses on using FOSS and open hardware to create infrastructure that can help pinpoint areas in need of help, in case of natural disasters. During the talk it was stressed how important it is to actually know where to send help and how we are currently still lacking information about that in such cases, making sending help inefficient, even though it is urgently needed.

I believe it is a really good effort that is being made and it is really worth it.

I particularly like seeing taking technology and FOSS and not only putting in usage in the real world but also using it to improve the world and help people. Besides I believe that this is exactly why technology exists; to improve our lives, not only in the essence of giving us more commodities and amenities but also by diminishing danger and by helping to save lives.

Regarding the venue, which was really cool, I really enjoyed all the booths there were. Both years we had some interesting stuff there. Including 3D printers, huge geekos (that I really love, and here is the proof) and this year openSUSE booth even had some quizes (Interesting idea, nice work Tomas)!

Now the greek team @ Prague was really motivating, as more and more people are getting involved.

https://plus.google.com/events/c0fn547i01b94gae3v9tkn2umqc/108046596627987682220/5805881752631285298

And here we are all together in osc12 group photo (or at least as much as our photographer, Martin, could capture).

Oh, by the way, THANK YOU Martin for the awesome photos 🙂

During the conference, some serious worries were expressed, concerning Gentoo’s INFRA team… Very very serious, if I may add!

So is it really safe that you guys are all not only in the same city but also in the same room?

…And then you would think that all these serious guys are all about work and hard-core programming. Well, you thought wrong!

As I said, we have A LOT OF FUN at these conferences! And did I mention we (or should I say they) drink a lot of beer (and that was only the beginning)?

Notice how we do have (some) women’s presence as well 🙂

 

And here is some openSUSE vs Gentoo:

https://plus.google.com/u/0/photos/100946941827770743585/albums/5802843671486322417/5802843675791782962

 

So that’s some of my good impressions from this year conf 🙂

I am really looking forward to next year’s event!