EuroOSCON - I'm done

In my last entry I had written that I was looking forward to attending the OpenSolaris BOF. Unfortunately, the attendance was a little disappointing. For those who had open enough minds to attend, we had an interesting and lively discussion about various Solaris features: SMF, Zones, ZFS, DTrace, ...

If only more of the conference attendees had open enough minds to think about other solutions to problems rather than just assuming that Linux is always the answer. I'm almost motivated to start a new Linux distro to help with all these problematic "nails". I'd like to call it Linux Hammer...

(For those of you who aren't familiar with the quote: "If the only tool you have is a hammer, you tend to see every problem as a nail." Abraham Maslow.)

In other news...

It's been pointed out to me that I can be very dour. In celebration of that fact, here are a few of the things that I hate about conferences.

  • People who are so full of themselves that they can't wait to ask questions and interrupt the speakers.
  • People who don't really have a question, but say something pointless so that everyone else can "admire" their cleverness.
  • Speakers with very thinly disguised axes to grind.
  • People who go from conference to conference, year after year repeating the same old crap that no-one else believes or cares about.
  • Laptop envy
  • People who follow Queen Elizabeth the First's bathing regime a little too carefully

I'm sure there's a lot more, but I'm trying to stay the right side of the dour/bitter divide and I'm getting close to crossing over. If anyone reads this and would like to contribute their own pet hates, feel free to add them as comments. The best ones will get no prizes whatsoever, but the authors can bask in whatever glory they feel they may have earned with their cleverness! :D

Comments:

You've just reminded me why I didn't bother going... The OSCON conferences used to be fun when they were attended mainly by people who actually \*did\* stuff. Now they are mostly a waste of time - a significant number of the presentations (especially the keynotes) are nothing more than thinly-veiled sales pitches, and mostly OSCON has become a way for O'Reilly to extract corporate training dollars from large companies - not that I can entirely blame them, but it doesn't make OSCON a particularly useful place to go.

I heard several people berating Nat Torkington about this at OSCON in Amsterdam last year, but it was quite clear that the might dollar was governing who got to give keynotes - pay the appropriate wedge and you too can give a sales pitch to the assembled Open Source Fanbois.

So that's my bitch - Presentations at conferences that pretend to be of interest to developers, but which are really just Sales presentations.

Posted by Alan Burlison on September 22, 2006 at 08:57 AM BST #

+++++++++++1 to alanbur's comment. i can't stand sales pitches disguised as presentations. oooohh... pretty laptop

Posted by stevel on September 22, 2006 at 09:24 AM BST #

"People who follow Queen Elizabeth the First's bathing regime a little too carefully." While I have no doubt there are such people, I am lost why they would be at an OSS conference... More details? -- Stephen

Posted by Stephen on September 22, 2006 at 02:41 PM BST #

Stephen, you are being ironic aren't you? What other kind of conference are "Soap Dodgers" more likely to attend? Comics? Role Playing Games? Maybe my nose is just too sensitive?

Posted by Gary on September 23, 2006 at 04:12 AM BST #

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