Tag Archive 'conference'

Feb 20

Some clarity about eLiberatica and Microsoft (again)

In response to comments about Microsoft sponsoring eLiberatica.

For the ones who don’t know what is FLOSS (I’ll continue to use this term instead of FOSS because is clearly defining what “free” means in this case- free = libre) Wikipedia is explaining it clear:

“Free and open source software, also F/OSS, FOSS, or FLOSS (free/libre/open source software) is software that is liberally licensed to grant the right of users to study, change, and improve its design through the availability of its source code. This approach has gained both momentum and acceptance as the potential benefits have been increasingly recognized by both individuals and corporate players.” …read more on Wikipedia.

Dan, I appreciate your comments and your opinions, and you may be right from some angles. I’ll give you a single example I already gave it a few years ago, when we allowed Microsoft to sponsor the event first time: please take a look at the biggest Open Source conference in the world, OSCON http://www.oscon.com/oscon2009, and tell me what you see on top right? Did the fact they allowed Microsoft to sponsor diluted their message and involvement in promoting FLOSS? No. Is somebody criticizing Tim O’Reilly for it? I don’t think so.

We should understand that both FLOSS and closed source models are going to coexist for many-many years from now. I don’t want eLiberatica to be perceived like an extreme FLOSS event, where we invite only the “pure” FLOSS organizations. eLiberatica should be an event where bright IT professionals with different opinions will come and talk in a civilized mode, exchange ideas and gain value.

Alex from Microsoft, in the left corner ;)

I’m not afraid at all that Microsoft speakers will influence FLOSS enthusiast and twist their minds, or they will confuse the neutrals or non-decided ones. Why? Because even if Microsoft is paying big bucks for smart and well-prepared professionals, first – they are not right, and last – these speakers will always lack passion. You cannot buy passion. Besides this, each time we were careful to invite at least a few very bright and exceptional FLOSS representatives that put light there, showing where Microsoft is wrong even if Microsoft speakers pretend they love FLOSS.

I totally agree with you that Microsoft will try hard to slow down FLOSS adoption. But making the rest of the people (I mean the non-FLOSS enthusiast, or the ones that are not aware) thinking that FLOSS is an IT extremist movement, is more dangerous that trying to talk and influence Microsoft. Of course, Microsoft will not change if we talk to them (they will change when their marked will shrink and they will fill the pain in the pockets).
But I know who will change – the undecided. The people who don’t know much about the issue. And even the ones who are Microsoft users. They will see that FLOSS people are open-minded, they are not fanatics, and they are in fact the ones that should be followed. That is my feeling.

Last but not least, please believe me that I would like to have no sponsors if it would be possible. I would like to be rich enough to organize this conference (which is a really expensive one) without the need of any financial support. That is in an ideal world.

Come at eLiberatica; if you will see any favored sponsor or the fact we allow them to manipulate the listeners in any wrong way, then you should let me know and I’ll put ashes in my head.

(PS – I apologies, but I’ll be with limited internet access until first of March, so I might not respond until then to any other comments.)


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Feb 20

4 Years Ago – eLiberatica 4th edition – A New Year

4 Years Ago

A few days ago, I met Zak for a beer, as we do usually to catch up with each other. Coincidentally, we realized that 4 years ago, almost the same day – in a night of December 2005, the idea of organizing a FLOSS event in Romania was born. How the time fly!

Many things happened in the meantime. The good – eLiberatica run three editions and reached 400 participants this year. High profile Open Source and Free Software activists, developers and enthusiasts came to Romania and presented their ideas, shared stories and expertise, made new friends, learned about our culture. The Romanian FLOSS community members gain something; they met each other in person, they shared ideas, they learned new things; new events and communities were developed. Although the Romanian FLOSS community is not united as I dreamt when I started, still, eLiberatica did something: it made it clear that Romanians are having a FLOSS community. It put it on the FLOSS World Map. It also attracted the government and media attention and most of all, the Romanian public attention; and the FLOSS international community attention to Romania. Many Romanians who had no idea about what Open Source and Free Software means, now learned.

Is this something? I don’t know, you judge, and the time will tell. There is still a lot to do, but it is a start.


eLiberatica 4th edition

Back these days: people are asking me what’s next, and especially about eLiberatica 4th edition. I can come now with a clear answer:

eLiberatica 2010 – unfortunately no…
eLiberatica 2011 – YES!

eLiberatica 2011

There are important factors making a 2010 edition hard to develop: on my side – I have to spend more time with my family, and to focus on my actual job. Zak is in a similar situation. Both of us spent many-many days and nights preparing and managing the previous three editions and volunteering for the community; now we should turn back to our families, they need us. The times are harsh too; there is a lot of political uncertainty and economical turmoil in Romania these days. We hope this will change in good in the next year…

Therefore, although Romi (Agora CEO – our partners we had in the first 3 editions) made me the offer to collaborate again in organizing eLiberatica, I had to say no this time.
Both Zak and I decided to go again together and prepare a big one – but only in 2011.

On the other hand, Romi mentioned to me that Agora would like to organize a local Open Source event in the spring of 2010, which I think is fain. Anyway, please note, this event is not going to be supported by Zak, and me, nor will be eLiberatica. On the other hand, I’m glad to see eLiberatica is not the single FLOSS event taking place in Romania now. A few are on the track and I hope we share our part in generating it.

I will be always supporting the FLOSS movement in Romania and, generally speaking – ROMANIA. Although Canada is now my country, and I love it and respect it, I’ll never forget where I came from. So if is anything I can help there, and is in my power, you let me know.

Related to eLiberatica 4th edition – I’ll continue to keep communication up; I’m open to any suggestions, so please stay in touch with me. I updated my blog, I’ll tune it up even more, and I’ll start to rearrange the eLiberatica websites, unifying it in a single one and preparing it for 2011. I estimate we will start to work for organizing the next edition probably the summer of 2010. In 2011, we wish to have the best FLOSS event ever in Romania.


A New Year

These being said, I wish all of you Merry Christmas and A Happy New Year!
It was an honor and a pleasure to be with you in all these 4 years, and I hope to be again together soon.


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