My first time at FOSDEM

Two weeks ago, I didn’t know what was the FOSDEM. After someone explained to me that it is one of the biggest event about Free and Open Source softwares and after receiving a car sharing proposal to go there, I decided to come to this festival.

First, car sharing was definitely a great thing because it allowed me to have two times a three hours discussion with peoples who share same interests as mine. After that, a beer event and a good night, I finally arrived at FOSDEM and was pleased to see that free softwares can attract so many people. Then I discovered the huge list of available conferences on eclectic themes : from virtualization to legal issues while going through communication protocols and dozens of other subjects. I noticed that a lot of Linux distributions were present and tried to sell their tee shirts. Mozilla, XMPP crew, PostgreSQL and Perl were very visible too. Another part was dedicated to open hardware I did not spend a long time here. I just had fun looking at Maker Bot and Enlightenment for tablets.

Of course, I was mostly interested in self hosting technologies. I was quite surprised and happy to see that XMPP had a conference dedicated to it. Goffi, the author of SàT, a social tool based on XMPP, had a talk about what he does. What I liked the most is that he emphasizes the fact that web apps need mutliple UI :  command line, text, browser… and show us how SàT facilitate the development of them for its plugins. I also had a good conversation about SàT and Newebe with him. Unhosted was there too but making contact was harder, I did not find the right thing to say to catch the interest of Michiel de Jong. I was also a little bit sad because I did not see something really new in what they said. Whatever they had nice stickers ;). About decentralization, another good fact was the Bedale Garbee talked about Freedom Box. The conference room was full and everybody was really interested in what he said. Unfortunately there were not real new things, just some hints on what they build : maybe some XMPP inside and an hardware recommandations for the dreamplug (they are trying to make the hardware base software GPL compliant). I also met some friends from the university that I didn’t see for several years. It was good to know that they were free softwares supporters and that they already self-host some of their tools !


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