OSSPAC 2009 – Open Source in Singapore

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OSSPAC 2009
– The first (of its kind in Singapore?) conference attracts developers, adopters and companies from Singapore and the neighboring countries to follow a diverse string of sessions, talks and labs for 3 days this week.
From some very general talks and keynotes to very specific technical sessions and labs everyone should have found his cup of tea. I was surprised by the small number of participants, despite Singapore being a technology hub (not in terms of OS..) and attending the SUN TechDays (blog entry) some 2..3 weeks back with a overwhelming number of people (a commercial roadshow at the fraction of the price, I know).
The conference reflects the OSS landscape in Singapore: Small and not very vivid (yet) as in other countries and cities around the world. Still a way to go ! It lives by participation ! I try to add to it.

I like to compare OS communities a bit with the arts scene, it starts very small, usually by individuals or small groups without any professional or commercial backing, eventually it would pick up pace and more people join in and ultimately companies to sponsor or finance it. It (the initial spark) cannot be engaged, enforced or bought.
Joining last years OS conference in Sydney Australia (blog entry), I found a very vivid and colorful event, some of that spirit could be injected here.

I really welcome the organizers effort to get this conference started, hoping this will be a regular event in the OSS community of Singapore. So far it was worth attending, some very good speakers and  I get to know some new people, companies and products.

Feedback:

  • A simpler conference location could bring down the price and allow more individuals to join.
  • Try to inject more interaction. (QA for keynotes)
  • Maybe you need a moderator for the individual tracks.
  • Where are the lightning talks ?
  • OSS conferences are not a place to wear ties.
  • The light (and sometimes the sound) setup was crap. But thats a general conference problem.

Conclusion (for me):

  • I will join again. OS is based on community and particpation.
  • Gonna hava mor detailed look at Jaspersoft BI and Ingres DB.
  • Signed up for Suse studio !