Author Topic: The Texas Linux Fest was Fun  (Read 2458 times)

Offline gurdonark

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The Texas Linux Fest was Fun
« on: June 22, 2014, 06:01:58 am »
I drove down to Austin to attend the Texas Linux Fest during the June 14th day of the festival.  The festival venue, the Austin Convention Center, proved to be near Lady Bird Lake, so that I could get a nice walk in prior to the fest. 

The keynote was by Karen Sandler, who used to be executive director of the Gnome Project and now leads the Software Freedom Conservancy. She gave an insightful talk about all the different corporate and organizational hats people can wear in their contributions to open source culture, and the issues that may arise. Like all good talks, hers featured few dogmatic statements and lots of issue-spotting and ideas.

The day was filled with interesting speakers. Each hour offered five options.  I went to talks done by speakers who focused on marketing and building community, as my own interests run to sharing culture in the Creative Commons music/netlabel sphere.  Other speakers focused on other topics and in particular on advances in linux technology.  One of my favorite talks was by Jeff Cannon, called "Linux Conversion in the Schools". Jeff is a former principal and teacher in a small, low-income town in south Texas, the Sinton Independent School District. Jeff described how his district saved lots of money in saved license fees by going with linux for teachers and students. So often we hear of places like Munich in Germany that convert to linux--it was great to hear of this small town in rural Texas that also converted to linux.  Jeff used Ubuntu with classic Gnome, but also pointed out Bodhi Linux for older systems. Perhaps someone should send Jeff a new Peppermint 5 stick  :).

Another speaker I enjoyed was Coco Kaleel, a 12 year old girl from California. Her talk was "Girls and Robots" She learned to solder at age 10. Now she makes robots and astronaut costumes and circuits and all the fund things a young maker can make. She's also made lots of friends at a local Los Angeles, CA hacker space. Coco's message?  Teach kids to do--and not merely to consume media. She did a great job with a detailed 15-minute talk.  She said she learned a lot about Linux--I hope that she can build some cool open source robots.

The festival had some good sponsors. The guys from Open Shot Video where there. The fellow at Libre Office answered my questions about that word processing software, while the fellow at CentOS explained how that operating system compares to Fedora, which I use on the desktop. Someday it would be fun to have a Peppermint OS booth.  ;D

The conference was really well-run. Every talk started on time. The admission was only 35 dollars, or 60 if one wanted, as I did, to support a bit more and get a t-shirt.  Parking was easy, and the vibe was very casual and easy-going.  The downtown Austin locale meant I could have lunch inexpensively, as I did at a nice little Thai place.  I'll go to another Texas linux fest someday.

This was my first linux festival and I really enjoyed it. I even got to do some great bird watching the evening before and the evening after the festival.
I mark down the Texas Linux Festival as filled with "win".

« Last Edit: June 22, 2014, 06:04:00 am by gurdonark »

Offline PCNetSpec

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Re: The Texas Linux Fest was Fun
« Reply #1 on: June 22, 2014, 09:53:34 am »
Sounds great, and I'm glad you enjoyed yourself...

Many thanks for taking the time to post your experience, and let us join in in some small way .. great mini review, cheers :)
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Offline mac

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Re: The Texas Linux Fest was Fun
« Reply #2 on: June 22, 2014, 11:33:58 am »
thanks gurdonark
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