Monday, July 31, 2006

OSCon Take-aways

I'm just starting my first work week after OSCon, and as I ride the bus in to work, I'm trying to put some order to my thoughts after the conference. There were a grundle of great talks and tutorials, any number of important hallway (or lunch, or whatever) conversations, a bunch of interesting blog posts from other attendees, and (of course) FOSCon. Beyond the things I expected to learn (like more about DSLs in Neal Ford's talk), I took away a number of themes that will play out in my activities over the next several months (and some future blog posts). Here's my list:

Ruby Community

  • The Ruby community is both really big and really helpful — even more than I thought.
  • The Rails community really is a part of the Ruby community — despite my fears to the contrary.
  • Starting & Supporting local/regional Ruby communities is key to the ongoing success of the greater Ruby community.

Conferences

  • It's the people/social setting that makes a conference really great.
  • A wider range of opportunities at the conference is important (to a point).
  • Organizing conferences is hard — thanks to ORA & Ruby Central for their work on OSCon, RubyConf, and RailsConf.

Publishing

  • Publishers can be leading or lagging indicators in a community.
  • Communities ned to communicate with publishers to drive the creation of the content we want/need.

Personal

  • I have to try harder with my own LOTY (Language Of The Year) — I want to hit Javascript, C, Haskell, and Smalltalk over the next several years.
  • I know more about Ruby than I thought I did, but less about Ruby than I want to.
  • More people read this blog than I though — I need to write more worthwhile stuff and less drivel.

1 comment:

Jayce^ said...

Starting & Supporting local/regional Ruby communities is key to the ongoing success of the greater Ruby community.

As for this, I would definitely look at doing this more in conjunction with other local FOSS groups. Too often people will start a new group, and attempt to create a whole new social community around it, often leeching needed resources from other groups. Much of this requires duplicated effort, and could best serve all FOSS groups by working together. Lugs, Language Sigs, and others should work together more to have a unified infrastructure, so we don't hog our users time for a single cause.