October 28, 2004
OpenFest 2004 / BSDCon (Bulgaria)
Updated 2004-10-29: added a link to Irina Marudina's story, as kindly provided by Silvina Georgieva on Georgi's blog.
Some of you may have noticed the OpenFest banner on my blog; as a matter of fact, I *know* that some of you have noticed it, judging from some questions asked off-line last week :) Well, it's actually gone by already - it took place on Saturday and Sunday, October 23th and 24th, that is, last weekend. And it was great!
I was planning to write a long entry with my impressions from all the lectures, but it looks like this may not happen all that soon. So here's the gist: as I've already mentioned in comments on other blogs, it was an amazing experience - and for an outside observer it would have been very, very hard to believe that the splendid organization, the insightful talks, the well-known speakers and guests, the demo machines, and all the rest could have been put up together in just a week or two by pretty much a handful of volunteer organizers. And that's a fact - a couple of actual outside observers said as much :) Of course, there was the usual amount of networking/socializing in the hallways and in the "Krivoto" pub after the talks, too - but that's the norm for such a gathering :)
More OpenFest impressions may be found in other blogs, mostly in Bulgarian - Yovko Lambrev and more, Vasil Kolev (in English, too) and more (in English, too), Yasen Pramatarov, Dafcho Tabakov, Bogomil Shopov and more, Hristo Iliev and more, Rossy Dimova, Silvina Georgieva, Kaloyan Doganov, Irina Marudina, and last but not least, Georgi Chorbadzhiyski and more.
I am certainly not counting myself among the organizers, unless that's the organizers of the Bulgarian BSDCon that took place on Sunday in parallel with the main OpenFest track. That one didn't go all that well, although it is my humble opinion that as the first public event of the Bulgarian BSD community (small as it is for the present - at least in terms of people who actually *speak up*), this BSDCon was actually a success - maybe not a great one, but still a success. Yes, there was some time mismanagement, there was a speaker who pulled out a couple of days before the 'con, there were various other issues - but as a whole, I'd like to think that we managed to demonstrate that, contrary to popular opinion, BSD is not dying :) We managed to gather up all kinds of interested parties, if only for a while, and hopefully to introduce the FreeBSD Bulgarian Documentation Project and the FreeBSD-BG site with its mailing lists - a bit more popularity never hurt a software or community project, I think :) Let's see if the translation project gets many new volunteers as a result of Dimitar Vasilev's talk.
As to the grumblings from people who said that the mismanaged BSDCon brought down the quality of the OpenFest as a whole - I'd like to think that it was not so much a lack of BSDCon organization as a failure to keep up with the very high standards set by the organizers of the main OpenFest track :) We will do better next time - and yes, there will be a next BSD-time, even before next year's OpenFest.
All in all, it was a wonderful weekend, one that I would not miss for the world - well, okay, maybe that's stretching it a bit, but you get the idea :)
Posted by roam at October 28, 2004 12:46 PM