15 July, 2009

about akademy 2009

-> some ramblings from short after Akademy I still hadn't published ;-)
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Yesterday we put the impression article online, and I have to get something of my chest about that one.

Don't mis-understand me, this meeting has been great. There sure are things which could have been better, but hey, can you expect to put 800 ppl to work in one place and expect everything to be perfect?

It's just that I (we) had to be a bit politically correct in the article, so I want to clarify a few sentences for those who did stay home. Note that this is ENTIRELY personal, my opinion, and probably mean towards some people.

"Negative voices are few and far between, at least on the KDE side, and even those who do not value the cross-desktop cooperation see advantages in this larger meeting."

In other words, many KDE people have really been appreciative of the joint meeting. They were interested in joint and GNOME technology. The things said during the KDE e.V. meeting were very positive and all except like 3 ppl voted for a joint meeting next year.

But apparently at least some (important/influencial) ppl on the GNOME side think different. A big issue seems money: the joint conference means sharing revenue. This is even mentioned in the poll about a joint conference on the GNOME site. Personally I don't see the relevance in light of the great things we accomplished... But knowing the financial situation at their side I guess it's to be expected.

Another thing was the organisation - way too much ended up on the shoulders of our people like Kenny and Claudia. I think that's unfair. Now they apologized for that, but it is something we'd have to do better if we do this joint meeting thing again. BTW Stormy did a lot for the event, esp in the sponsors area. And I'm sure there is enough blame for everyone, not just on the Gnome side (actually I myself should've gotten involved in an earlier stage, the PR would've been better if I had).

But the above is not black and white. I was pleasantly surprised by the attitude Collabora people, the Tracker and Zeitgeist developers and many more. There might also have been KDE people unfriendly towards our gnomy friends (I hope not, and have not seen any such behaviour).

"There are tensions too admittedly, not everyone was appreciative of our primary sponsor, but the conference has acted as a real focus to break down such attitudes."

What happened is that at the first Gnome keynote someone introducing the speaker basically told the audience to put a GNOME foot sticker over the logo of the biggest sponsor, Nokia's Qt. An act I described initially as 'childish'. I do however understand it - imagine that a few minutes before that Quim Gil told the conference audience Maemo would move to Qt. And imagine you work professionally on GTK, getting your business from Nokia... I do however think it was very unprofessional by the person introducing the speakers to say such a thing.

Ok, enough complaining. I can think of other things I was unhappy/disappointed about but that'll have to wait for another time. Besides, there was enough good stuff there as well. And things to improve (also for myself). I hope I managed to keep this reasonable (I tried) and not too offending. And I'm open to input - as always.