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People person, technology enthusiast and all-things-open evangelist. Previously community manager at SUSE and now at ownCloud while continuing an decade long involvement in the KDE community. Enjoys avoiding traffic and public transport on bike through Berlin, but only when the weather is good. Loves cooking for friends and family and playing with our dog. Find me also on Twitter!

28 January, 2014 talks a must-see!

In less than 4 weeks, the event starts in Gandhinagar, India. And looking at the list of talks, it is shaping up to be an awesome event. It has shown to be a great way of helping students get involved in KDE and Free Software, combining a friendly atmosphere with a wide variety of talks.


I have to confess that I barely, if ever, manage to listen to talks at events. I usually am too busy talking to all the cool folks around - I have managed to almost miss my own talks a few times, showing up last-minute.

But might turn out different. I just had a look at the list of accepted sessions and while they promised more are coming, this is already more than enough to make me promise myself to attend as many as I can. Just a taste below.

Community subjects

There is a number of talks around getting involved in Free Software (and KDE in particular). These are very much worth joining - I've already seen that Smit Shah got involved at this every event last year and now is featured as speaker. What he means by coconut I'd love to hear, too. There are more speakers about this subject, like Rishab Arora about hacking on KStars and so on. Inspiring.

KDE tech talks

A second series of talks is about KDE and related technologies. It introduces you to Plasma Next (Bhushan Shah), the Mer Project (by Siteshwar Vashisht and Shantanu Tushar), Frederik Gladhorn (from Digia) will give an overview of the Qt Project, Peter Grasch himself will introduce Simon and speech recognition integration and so on. And myself, I'll give a pretty darn broad talk about where KDE is and where it is going, touching on both technical and social subjects. Yeah, a few comma's and dot's got lost on that page, I promise I'll talk in simple words and use punctuation during the session.

It isn't certain yet but I might be giving a few more practical workshop-style sessions (with a very low barrier to entry) about subjects like building local communities, giving presentations and social skills in Open Source projects. I guess it'll depend on demand and availability of rooms if those will happen or not.

Technical talks

Some talks are technical - low-level stuff like programming languages and tips. Doesn't need to be terribly hard to understand, however.

For example, Kevin Ottens will talk about C++11, calling it a language renaissance. Now that's a ambitious title but he's been explaining me a few of the C++11 features and it seems impressive. Let me point out here that I'm a psychologist and while my wife has remarked that I'm "pretty smart for a psychologist" I know no more than the very basics of programming, not having touched anything more complicated than a bash script for, well, ever.

So while the talk page notes 'Intermediate' as Difficulty level, I would say that any proper nerd will enjoy it. With proper nerd here meaning somebody with the right attitude, irrespective of knowledge or experience.

See some more talks here.

On a green note

I will of course be there also as openSUSE guy. I'll try and bring a few DVD's and some other stuff, if I can.

See you there ;-)