Communicating freely

Archive for August, 2008

Akademy 2008 rocked

Monday, August 18th, 2008

I was at Akademy 2008 to speak on a panel and (less formally) to wander around annoying hackers with silly questions. 

I spent a good deal of time harassing Armijn in the USB plugfest room by picking up random sticks and asking "what’s this one for?"  The answers ranged from Bluetooth to InfraRed to DVB, and appearently quite a few of these devices work on GNU/Linux.  However, I am heartbroken to report the DVB sticks refused to play ball.  Sighs, so much for watching the Olympics on my laptop.

Speaking of devices, Nokia gave away 100 internet tablets to KDE developers.  I saw groups playing with them in every corner of the conference.  My attention was caught by a report that some enterprising chap had got Plasma working on the 400mz CPU.  I tracked him down in the Plasma BoF room and drilled him regarding stability and speed; it’s looking good.

I want to see more 100% Free Software devices in the mobile space.  OpenMoko has blazed a trail in proving the viability of the Four Freedoms in this sphere; now it’s time to get onto 500 million devices.  I believe KDE 4 may provide one platform to accomplish this.

Talking about vision, on our panel Aaron spoke eloquently about the future of KDE.  I was impressed by the direction of the KDE e.V. board and by the sheer scale of the sustained innovation happening across the project. Knut from Trolltech also said some pretty deep things about social innovation and the place of Free Software.  Great chap, and he’s mad about creme brulee.  Plus points in every direction.

Towards the end of my adventure, Adriaan drank strange Dutch gin out of paper cups with me.  We discovered that the stuff melts the binding of the cups, leading to a slightly woody and vaguely gummy experience.  Excellent.  Thanks to Armijn from providing the spirit for testing and to Mr KDE Solaris ™ for being a drinking victim buddy.

What a conference.