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vBSDcon 2013 Registrations Now Open!

August 12, 2013 Leave a comment

vBSDcon Registrations Now Open!

In April 2013, Verisign announced vBSDcon 2013 to be held October 25 – 27, 2013 in Dulles, VA. The conference, formatted to resemble an unConference concept, will feature speakers such as David Chisnall, Luigi Rizzo, Baptiste Daroussin, Henning Brauer, Reyk Floeter, and others.  vBSDcon will include events like hacker lounges, doc sprints, BSDA exams, and a mid-conference social*.

In these most recent months, they have been developing the vBSDcon conference website hosted at http://www.vbsdcon.com/.  It includes full details surrounding the schedule, agenda, and speakers for vBSDcon.  The most recent addition to the conference website is that registrations are now open!

* Schedule is subject to change without notice, The BSDA exams are hosted by the BSD Certification group and not an official part of vBSDcon.

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vBSDcon Website Update…

July 22, 2013 Leave a comment

vBSDcon Website Update…

In April 2013, Verisign announced vBSDcon, a BSD-related conference, in Dulles, VA to occur October 25 – 27, 2013. In the weeks following the announcement, the vBSDcon website was activated with preliminary details on the dates and location of the event.  This past weekend, the next phase of development of the website was published.  The updated website contains a detailed conference agenda, speaker biographies, and descriptions of speaker’s topics, and more.  The website website can be viewed at http://www.vbsdcon.com/.

The next phase of development will include a map detailing conference facilities/location, social event location(s), and local points of interest, restaurants, and recreational activities.  Also slated for the next phase is the addition of a sponsor page and attendee registrations.  So, check the site often and look for registrations to open up in the coming weeks!

BSDCan 2013

May 27, 2013 1 comment
I blogged my experience at MeetBSD 2012 a few months ago and recently attended BSDCan for the first time.  Since I blogged my experience at MeetBSD, I also wanted to blog my experience at BSDCan.

I attended BSDCan as an attendee and conference organizer.  I recently embarked on journey I never thought I would.  I am a co-chair for a conference.  vBSDcon is the first conference or large event that I’ve organized (apart from my wedding when I married the woman who continually encourages me to grow).  Therefore, my perspective of the conference covered multiple facets.

Conference Format

The conference covered two days and was preceded by 2 days of developer summit sessions, a vendor summit, and tutorials. The main conference consisted of 3 tracks (hacking, embedded, and system administration) meaning that there were 3 presenters at any one time during speaking sessions.

I’ll add that all conferences have an additional track which may or may not be planned…the social track. The social track consists of time spent in the halls between presentations discussing projects with others. It includes time spent at restaurants after the day’s conference activities. It includes time spent at the “big social event” many BSD-related conferences have.

One drawback of multiple tracks is that often there are multiple presentations occurring simultaneously one may wish to attend. This certainly was the case with me a time or two.

Tutorials

Tutorials are educational presentations designed to educate attendees on some of the nuts and bolts of a project and/or technology. They are typically 3 hours in length with an instructor/presenter who is considered an expert on the topic.

BSDCan 2013 had four tutorials scheduled. Of the four, I attended two:

DNSSEC: Theory, Troubleshooting, and Deployment With BIND

Presented by Michael W. Lucas, this tutorial encompassed operating DNSSEC in BIND. He covered the operational concepts of DNSSEC and followed up by describing BIND configurations to support DNSSEC. He introduced the various binaries used in troubleshooting various aspects of DNSSEC and BIND configurations and operations.

Making FreeBSD Ports

Presented by Gábor Páli, this tutorial covered creating a FreeBSD Port from scratch. Gábor included many details and explanations of various aspects of creating a Port including many common variables and macros to use in Makefiles. He also expanded on the content of other potential files that can be created and how to generate those files.

Vendor Summit

The vendor summit is an opportunity for FreeBSD committers and vendors to collaborate together on setting priorities for future projects. George Neville-Neil headed up the session focusing on userland space in FreeBSD. Many areas where vendors expressed needs included development and user related desktop projects, most of which seemed to circle back to the first item on the list…Java.

It was made clear that vendors are interested in having a cohesive and functional Java implementation available. By doing so, it will enable forward progress on the implementation of many other userland applications.

Conference Day 1

Presentations

Conference Day 2

Presentations

These are the presentations I attended on Day 2:

Impressions

Dan Langille, BSDCan organizer, did an excellent job of ensuring the conference went according to plan from the start of the Developer’s Summit through the tutorials and into the conference activities. The logistics of ensuring wi-fi access was available, providing power strips and power cables enabling users to take notes on laptops, and providing food, among the many other tasks he must attend to. It really is an impressive feat.

All speakers created well thought out presentations all the way from the tutorials through the closing session. The content was relevant and applicable to the track and current trends in the industry. Speakers sufficiently filled their allotted time slot w/ ample time for Q&A. I found several presentations very interesting and relevant to the work I perform.

Overall Experience

The overall experience at BSDCan 2013 was extremely positive. I was impressed with the execution of the various activities, including those in the unofficial “social track”. This conference provided excellent opportunities to absorb information, collaborate with others, and socialize and meet new people.

This conference was an excellent opportunity for me to gleam concepts and ideas for potential inclusion at vBSDcon hosted by Verisign in October 2013.

vBSDcon website is up!

May 15, 2013 1 comment

vBSDcon Website Is Up!

In April 2013, Verisign announced the inaugural biennial vBSDcon event in Dulles, VA to occur October 25 – 27, 2013. In the weeks since the initial announcement, the vBSDcon website has been activated with details on the dates and location of the event. The website is available at http://www.vbsdcon.com/.

Some details have yet to be published, but will be available on the official vBSDcon website in the coming weeks. Please check back periodically for new updates!

vBSDCon: Oct 25 – 27, 2013

April 17, 2013 6 comments

vBSDCon Announcement

Save the date as Verisign, Inc. is proud to announce the inaugural biennial vBSDCon to be held October 25 – 27, 2013 at the Dulles Hyatt in Dulles, VA. Please stay tuned as additional details will become available in the next 4 – 6 weeks!

This event will feature speakers like Baptiste Daroussin, David Chisnall, Luigi Rizzo speaking on topics that include PkgNG, Clang/LLVM, netmap. vBSDCon will also feature breakout sessions and birds of a feather type discussions to make this a one of kind BSD-related conference.

View the official announcement here (in PDF format)

MeetBSD California 2012

November 7, 2012 1 comment
I am a fairly recent newcomer to the FreeBSD community and had the opportunity to attend my first BSD related conference. This is the account of my experience at MeetBSD California 2012.

MeetBSD California 2012 was coordinated by iX Systems and hosted at Yahoo! corporate headquarters in Sunnyvale, CA. The Yahoo! facility easily accommodated the 100 – 125 attendees in multiple conference rooms for varying purposes across the two days allocated.

Conference Format

The conference was spread across two days. Day 1 revolved around speakers and presentations while day 2 followed what was called “The unConference” agenda. “The unConference” included lightning talks/speed geeking sessions and break out sessions. The topics of the second day were chosen by conference attendees as opposed to the organizers.

The Conference: Day 1

Presentations

Impressions

All of the speakers were knowledgeable on their topics and well prepared with slide decks accompanying their presentations some even including demos. Attendees participated with questions, comments, and general discussion. The environment was engaging and lively and provided much information to absorb.

In the large conference room, however, it was difficult for some in the back to hear the speakers. I think an audio sound system would have been an excellent idea for this conference.

The Conference: Day 2

Day 2: The unConference

The idea of the speed geeking session was of particular interest to most in attendance and broke up the monotony of a constant stream of speakers and presentations. This session was a set of speakers covering a topic with a group of individuals for approximately 10 minutes. At the conclusion of that 10 minutes, each group rotated to a different speaker who spoke on their topic for 10 minutes. The rotation was repeated until each group had heard all of the speakers.

Later, Conference attendees voted on subjects that would later become the topics of the breakout sessions. These breakout sessions enabled groups of interested attendees to interactively discuss subjects with which they had definitive interest. These sessions occurred at the latter part of the day. However, as the day wore on, I began to lose focus.

Overall Experience

In conclusion, my experience at the conference was extremely positive. The conference content was very informative and presented well. Additionally, much was gained outside the confines of the conference itself. I had the opportunity to meet and socialize with multiple individuals who are BSD enthusiasts and others with whom I’ve communicated with digitally previously.