On 03.06.2015 18:33, Robert Schweikert wrote:
The intent of the openSUSE Conference (oSC) is/was to be an inward looking conference.
This might have been the charter but it was IMHO rarely executed like that. I would say we have had as many approaches to oSC as we had organizers. We had completely user-facing oSCs, we had community focused oSCs. We had events where this focus switched completely in the middle etc. etc. Same for the format, some of them where workshop driven, some nearly completely consisting of lectures.
We, as a community, have never really defined what oSC should be like and what the goal is, so every organizer went ahead and made their "version".
- While in the end we had a good turn out at oSC15, it took a
herculean effort to get there and I would say we did not meet the goal of having "..a significant number of contributors gather..".
True, the more significant question is why is that so?
- The most recent oSCs required an unbelievable effort by a very
small group of people. Each year we got lucky and found someone who was willing to take on the organization. But effectively we are in "burn mode", i.e. once someone organized the event they are completely and utterly burned out.
Which is to be expected when you organize the 'life' of ~250 people over the course of 4 days. This is a shitload of work, no matter how good you are at it. This is a full-time job and at the end you're going to be glad that it's over.
I think the question we should ask ourselves is how can we make this a little less grueling than it is now.
- From my perspective we are failing at "fulfilling the charter of
Again, the most significant question is why are we?
- Should the effort be made to continue oSC past oSC16?
I think the last couple of oSCs have shown that we desperately need to rethink the approach. What are the benefits of changing location and organizer teams, what are the drawbacks?
- Should we strive to change the charter/nature of oSC and brand
it more as a "FOSS conference organized by the openSUSE project"
I fail to understand what this would change for us as a community? Can you elaborate?
- What would it take to raise oSC attendance closer to the top of
your list, given the other reasons listed above plus your own are still present?
Like with every other event in life: oSC needs to be meaningful to the people, they need to take away something. For a tech conference this is for most people (a) personal connections, (b) knowledge and (c) entertainment.
- What prevents people from contributing to the organization of
I think that throwing inexperienced openSUSE/oSC organizers at it every year, giving them next to no directions and no structural support is the cause. This make organizing oSC a very daunting task with lots of loose ends. Usually that means that collaboration goes overboard first because collaboration takes a huge extra effort to set up.