Open Source, in style

Fabrizio did it again. Just a few days after I finally managed to get my hands on a Funambol tee with the great “Italians do IT better” motto, he’s coming up with another great t-shirt design. Check out his “235 more reasons to love Open Source” apparel, as it’s just hilarious and genius. Fabrizio: I’m sure you will have a great success with your company, but just in case you might consider an alternative career as a fashion designer…

This will be my one and only comment on the most short-sighted move Microsoft managed to do in the past few years. Being a European, I’m lucky enough (for now) to be only marginally bothered by software patents. My only suggestions to Microsoft would be to stop throwing stuff at the fan if they can’t realize they’re just in front of it, and maybe hire the guys who have been behind IBM’s donation of 500 patents for open source use, which was an excellent (and sneaky) way to assert that patents matter while being apparently nice to the community. Oh, and yeah, how about sending a few PR people to Leidseplein, Amsterdam, to watch and learn from this nice peristyle?

(For the Latin impaired: click here for a translation)

Yet Another JavaOne WrapUp

Everyone and his dog has been blogging about JavaOne, so if you weren’t there you should by now know what you’ve been missing. I’ll try to keep it short then, summarizing my super-hectic week in a few paragraphs.

The conference, first. I have mixed feelings about it: my first comment would be “WAY too big”.  You know how everything was organized in queues, and I have to confess Sun did an outstanding job in regulating 15K people swarming into and around the Moscone center. Most probably the content was nice, and a lot of people had a lot to learn, but I have to confess I almost lost my interest in conference sessions, given how I value much better the networking opportunities. And there is little if any possibility to network with a huge flood of people who has a tight schedule of pre-booked seats in sessions. Our talk was fine, and we had lots of fun performing it, even though our evil plot of presenting 30 Open Source projects was ruined by severe lack of time. Slides are online, if you feel like having a look at what we’ve been up to.

The exhibit hall: great for looting gadgets (I managed to grab a big bag full of stuff), much less so from a business perspective. Too crowded, again, which I reckon might be great for exhibitors, yet it definitely sucks for real business as you might be lucky to get a five minute slot with the guy manning the booth before some kid bumps you out so that he can have the free pen as well. It was OK for collecting business cards and networking with a few existing and future partners, but I had to resort to off-site meetings to get some work done: brownie points go to Atlassian for letting me crash their offices and bash their new partner program (special thanks to Todd for kicking my ass on a wonderful golf course during the week-end) and Terracotta for a great party (gee… unlimited booze and no stupid drink tickets, how about that?), some Chinese food to remember and a superb business conversation: those guys rock. Too bad agendas were colliding, which meant I didn’t get to meet the Iona guys, but I’m sure we will be able to find some quality time in the future.

San Francisco: it was my first time there, and I had great expectations. Despite being in a dodgy neighborhood (do avoid the Ramada Plaza, now known as Whitcomb, if you can: despite being in Market street, it’s just two blocks too far from the nice part of town), I have to say Frisco lived up to my expectations, and I still consider it one of the few places I might be willing to live if we ever were to move to the USA. At a very least because of the incredible climate, which suits me just fine.

People: it’s always nice to meet new people, and it’s definitely great to meet new excellent people. I spent a lot of time resonating and having fun with Henri, one of those guys that just get it and manage to have a very clear vision of what Open Source should be. And I have to mention that, despite this stupid guy trying hard to piss him off with a no-show at our first meeting, I had one of the most pleasant evening dinner and chat in a long time with Joseph di Paolantonio and Clarise: if talking about Open Source and posting recipes earns me such incredible people, I will never stop blogging. And of course I shouldn’t forget mentioning how great is hanging around with Brian: we should definitely have more talks together, at a very least as this makes a great chance to meet despite having an ocean and then quite some land between us. 

I’m back now, with an impressive record of 2h13m average daily flight time since January (I bet there are pilots doing less then me), not to mention over 100 timezone been traveled in just a few months. This week I’m enjoying home before hitting the road again, as Sourcesense business is now claiming its fair share. Which will bring some interesting news for the near future… just stay tuned.

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OSBC: Developers wanted

Matt is looking for developers to attend OSBC and add to the conference the voice of those who are actually making Open Source happen. You have a good chance to get in for free, which leaves little room for excuses.

I definitely wish I could make it: unfortunately, conference timing was awful this year. With ApacheCon Europe and JavaOne running next to each other, and OSBC just a week away from the latter, it would have been way too hard for this poor European soul to cross the ocean twice in three weeks time: as I was signed in as a speaker for the first two events, it wasn’t really like I had a choice.

Still, the program is outstanding, and I will sorely miss not being there. Matt did a great job as usual, and I’m really looking forward to attend the next edition. And to webcasts, of course!

Free, at last

No, I’m not talking about OpenJDK, despite being at JavaOne: that one will eventually be free, but it will also take some time.

I’m talking about myself: it’s been a long stretch of painful weeks with lots of stuff to do, including two different presentations for ApacheCon and JavaOne. All with the usual crazy traveling involved, and the crazy workload that just doesn’t seem to stop (they say it’s a happy problem, but for some reason that doesn’t quite help…). I find myself resonating with Rich: there is no place like home, and I just feel I want to get back and enjoy a few quiet days.

Anyway: I’m now sitting in the speaker services room at JavaOne: our presentation was well received yesterday night, and I’m now finding myself liberated after what just a few weeks ago looked like an impressive pile of stuff to do was finally reduced to some manageable workload. Time to get back to business, get a lot of stuff done, and possibly blog a bit more about a few news that got yours truly both amused and pissed off: more later. And, by the way, I’ll be in San Francisco for the whole JavaOne and the weekend after that, leaving on Sunday evening: if you want to meet, greet, shake hands and have a beer, please don’t be shy and send me a note!