Monday, December 07, 2009

FUDCon - Day one : The awesomeness that is.

So Day one has come and gone. Let me put this simply, Fedora User and Developer Conference Toronto 2009 is epic freaking win. We have essentially destroyed the BarCamp style conference because there are too many interesting projects that are talk worthy going on within Fedora. There were so many proposed talks that the entire schedule got pushed back an hour and a half due to the pitch of talks and the voting on topics. The rooms were packed, some talks were pushed out to the back with standing room only if you didn't make it to the room on time and these were not small class rooms, this is quite a large university we're being hosted at.

There was also a lot of very cool efforts being put forth in order to do a "live FUDCon" for those of us Fedorans and all interested parties would be able to participate and get in on the FUDCon action from remote locations. We had irc transcribers for each session as well as audio/video for the rooms in which had the hardware/facilities to do so.

For those of you who were unable to attend, please feel free to check all the logs here:

I attended the "Observing Fedora with SystemTap" session during the first round of sessions which was quite impressive. You are now able to perform in depth analysis of any aspect of your system because there is support in the kernel for observing essentially everything and getting reports back. I loved this both from the systems admin side where I want to try and track down issues and bottlenecks as well as from the developer side because it could potentially make targeting down bugs very easy. I did the irc transcribing for that session so I highly recommend checking out the log

Second round of sessions I attended the State of X / State of the Kernel which was a presentation by X and Kernel hackers (respectively) that was quite enlightening to the future plans of kernel and X technologies and it continues to impress on how much is being done and how fast it is happening. The open source support for hardware, including things like USB3.0 (which is already there even though the hardware isn't out and nobody else has support for it), is incredible. I also irc transcribed that one, so I highly recommend checking those out also ;) ...

Third sessions round I went to the "Designing the future of Free Software Operating System User Experiences - GNOME Shell (Gnome3 UI)" session which honestly got me excited about Gnome again. I actually got so excited that I yesterday got in touch with one of the gnome-shell package maintainers and got myself approved as a co-maintainer and my idea is that since Gnome Shell is currently in Fedora 12 as a tech preview, and since we as Fedora are generally the first for everything I figured "why not push git snapshots of the latest features of the gnome-shell UI out to those who are interested in next generation user interfaces?" Yeah, I thought so too. Gnome3 will be a great advancement in user interaction with a computer, it is the first time (that I can think of) that anyone has ever completely attempted to redesing how a user interacts with their machine. There is no longer just the age old "let me click this button that sits in a panel that gives me a menu listing what applications I have access to". It is a completely new take on the world of desktop computing and its definitely a project to keep your eye on. I irc transcribed this one also ... check it:

Fourth round is up and I found my way over to Mo's "Designing UI mockups in Inkscape" which was extremely useful in so many ways. I actually used what I learned in her session later that night to throw together some mockups of an idea myself and herlo (irc nick on Freenode) were throwing around of Paul W. Frields pet project called PulseCaster ( So, not only was the session quite good and I almost immediately found a use case for the knowledge and techniques that I learned from the presentation but I also found a bug in Inkscape which I had others verify and we confirmed an already existing bug in bugzilla. I <3 FUDCon.

Last session of the day I walked into a session called "Moksha and Fedora Community -- Real-time web apps with Python and AMQP" which blew my mind. This is Web3.0 (not by definition, but that's what I'm calling it), Luke Macken and J5 completely just stepped over web2.0 and said "pffft, childs play" (well not really but in my mind I assume it went something like that). This session showed off technology that allows real time message passing in a web browser as well as "native" support for standard protocols. The project page is and I think everyone on the planet should take some time to go there and enjoy the demo, prepare to have your mind blown. Oh, and I also irc transcribed that one as well ... presentation slides found:

Ok, so sessions are done but we are in now way, shape, or form done. It is time for the "State of Fedora" speach by the Fedora Project Leader, Paul W. Frields. This is where our fearless leader takes the time to look back and look forward, take note and discuss what we've learned and what we can learn. It was a heart felt speach adressing a lot of things that are so great about our community and what makes Fedora so great. Paul also announced the codename of Fedora 13, which is Goddard (I probably mispelled that, sorry). This was a solid way to wrap up an amazing day.

Alright, that was Saturday. Stay tuned, I will report on Sunday (which was also awsome). I will probably report a little on today as well, but today seems to be at least somewhat consumed by attempting to get my blog updated to reflect the awesomeness that is FUDCon.