I attended this part of OSCON last year as well.
Although it was well worth the time today, I believe that last year was much better. I think I was a lot more "bright eyed" last year - even after attending OSCON for the previous 3 years at the time. I was starting out in a new exciting role and building a new team. I was very thirsty for this type of thing then. This year, the team is in place, it is great & we have already been through a lot together. And we are busy trying to deliver, so maybe it is just a mindset thing.
One thing is for sure - I have had enough of the Web 2.0 crap. I never liked the phrase and I am thoroughly sick of it. I'm with Eben Moglen - 10 years from now, Ajax and Web 2.0 will be "thermal noise".
Last year I was blown away by Tim O'Reilly. This year I wasn't. Don't get me wrong, he is a really bright guy, but this year he just didn't seem to have the same zip (come to think of it, none of the O'Reilly people did). I will say this, Tim was very gracious in talking to Eben Moglen - I could totally see most people flipping out in that situation. Eben admitted that he was intentionally making a spectacle of himself and Tim to draw attention to important issues - you could see that making the receiver (Tim) upset.
Here are some highlights and lowlights from my opinion:
- Eben Moglen vs. Tim O'Reilly - I'd have to vote for Eben - but who really could debate Eben and win? Tim was gracious though. Update (hour or 2 later): After reading a few other reactions and thinking about it further, I don't quite understand why Eben attacked Tim that way. I'd like to hear an explanation. Was it warranted? Sure doesn't seem like it?
- Firefox Extension Ecosystem
- Doug Cutting, creator of Lucene, Nutch, and hadoop
- Marten Mickos, CEO of MySQL - a real breath of fresh air after Oracle's Mike Olson - what a solid thoughtful dude.
- Ohloh.net - as an enterprise customer of course I like this
- OpenCV - man I feel dumb about the code I sling after watching this. Wow.
- Karl Fogel - on Congress and version control and Subversion & centralized SCM vs. Decentralized
- Dave Morin from Facebook - a big "so what!?" from me
- Roger Magoulas Director of O'Reilly Research - last year he had way more zip. This year his slides were broke and he kinda tanked. May just be that the novelty of it all wore off from last year. Last year, I was blown away by his presentation.
- Matt Asay vs. Mike Olson from Oracle - Sorry Matt! I think that I was just more annoyed with Mike's POV, although he did recommend a book that sounded interesting: Non Zero - The Logic of Human Destiny, so he wasn't that bad. Anyways, wasn't awful, I just have heard that stuff before. I wish Matt spazzed out more like I know he can.
- Jim Zemlin (The Linux Foundation). Sounds like a nice enough guy, but I liked Stuart Cohen better - but I know him so that isn't fair. I don't really get what they do now, other than pay Linus and other core committers which is good enough for me.
- Mark Shuttleworth - Ubuntu - as a big Ubuntu fan I was a bit underwhelmed. It wasn't bad, but it just wasn't covering areas I was terribly interested in. Mark is a good dude though. He even has Ubuntu in his will - it will be well taken care of should his next space trip not go well. Sweet! Maybe I'm just jealous that I'm not him ;)
- Andy Oram, O'Reilly - Open Source Documentation - I was lost and bored and the slides didn't work.
- OpenID - I was just tired at this point. It did cause me to check in on JanRain. That was the first I heard that their CEO changed. Reading Scott Kveton's post on resigning reminded me just how hard start up life can be. I have no doubt that I will do that again at some point in my life, but man does it pack a wallup. Good luck JanRain and Scott.