You may recall from my last Weekly Rewind that I’d travelled to Bonn, Germany to visit my Linux Outlaws co-host Fab, and his girlfriend Katy. They came over and stayed with me last year for LugRadio Live 08. So to use a footballing analogy, I suppose you could say this was the return leg. This article finds me in a different location, Schiphol Airport in Amsterdam actually. I’m in some kind of cafe/bar to be precise, and I’m waiting for my flight back to Manchester. So let’s recap the events that led me here:
On Sunday night after I wrote my last article we had a bit of a party. Some of Fab and Katy’s friends came over for beers, and it was great fun. I ended up doing a bit of an impromptu gig with Fab’s acoustic guitar. I can’t resist a chance to show off. The gang seemed to enjoy it though and I wasn’t booed off, so I consider that a victory (again with the football analogies). On Monday I had a walk around Bonn and saw a bit of the town, ably guided by Fab. It’s a really lovely place I must say, very relaxed; lot’s of trees and open space. Not your typical big city by any means. The people seem pretty cool as well. In the evening we recorded and streamed Linux Outlaws 98, but we didn’t have a chance to edit and release it yet, at the time of writing. Quite a few people watched live and got involved. You’ll hear it very soon, in the next few days I promise. On Tuesday we drove to Berlin and got ready for Linux Tag 2009.
The first day of the show was Wednesday, and we got off to a good start by recording a long interview with Paul Frields and Max Spevak from Fedora. They were really nice guys and we spent a fair bit of time with them in the coming days. Max also suggested we have a chat to Mo Duffy, the head of the Fedora art team. She was very nice too and we chatted about her role at Red Hat. Later on we met up with a listener of the show, Ryan. We enjoyed some beer and pizza (a theme is developing) in the evening with him. On Thursday we hit the show floor again, talking to many more folks and heading around the stands. It really was quite a big show; they reckon there were 10,000 visitors across the 3 days, and I can believe it. We also met up with another listener Zahnersatz from Identi.ca and he interviewed us for his new Linux podcast. It’ll be in German and I’m afraid I don’t know the name right now, but as soon as I find out more details I’ll pass them on. From there we went to the Drupal stand, where we had a bit of a party and were furnished with free beers. Yes, that’s free as in beer. What truly lovely folks they were! We stayed for quite a while and had a great time talking to everyone. We then discovered we couldn’t find our way out of the Berlin Messe. Honestly, that place is so big you could see it from space. We wandered around for a while in the grounds and eventually found a way out, but it was like being in some sort of adventure game, or perhaps even Resident Evil. The whole place deserted. I was waiting for the zombies to appear, but thankfully I think they got lost too.
After a short break, I’m resuming this article from the plane. Offline of course. I’m looking out of the window over the clouds, it’s quite bizarre. I think we’re somewhere over the English Channel but I couldn’t say for sure. Back to business. On Friday it was the first day of FUDcon, the rather strangely named Fedora conference. It was just over the way from Linux Tag and tied in well. We met Jan Wildeboer from Red Hat at the event and spent some time with him. Really nice guy. He’s an open source evangelist for the company, and does a lot of work to refute the claims of Microsoft and others in pushing software patents. I also interviewed Joe “zonker” Brockmeier the OpenSuse Community Manager, back in the main building. We talked about all things OpenSuse an Novell related. You’ll be able to hear all of these interviews in episode 99 of Linux Outlaws, which I expect to release some time later in the week.
Finally, on the Friday night we hopped on the S-Bahn and went a few stops along to the FUDPUB party. There was free pizza and we had a great time with everyone there. Fab and I had the pleasure of hanging out with Ade Bradshaw of LugRadio fame, and we spent most of the party laughing and drinking with him. He also brought up an intriguing game called “Dirty Gamble”, but I’m not at liberty to reveal any details sorry. You’ll have to keep wondering 😛 A really great night was had by all, and upon returning to out hotel Fab and I recorded some stuff for episode 99. We were a bit the worse for wear (not from drink, just tired mostly) and perhaps you can hear that, but it’s authentic field reporting *ahem*. On Saturday we nipped into FUDcon again for a chat with Max and Paul. Then it was off down the autobahn again towards Bonn, we drove most of the day. I then prepared and released a new episode of Rathole Radio in the evening. Obviously I can’t do a live show as it should be on right now, and I’m on a plane!! The pre-recorded show features an interview with Professor Kliq though and it’s something a little bit different I think. Hopefully you’ll enjoy it. Fab kindly drove me back to Amsterdam this afternoon, and so that brings us up to date. I’d just like to take a moment to thank everyone we met at Linux Tag for being so warm and welcoming, we really had fun. The organizers gave us shiny press passes and we were able to use the private press facilities. It almost makes me feel professional… almost. I hope I can visit Germany again soon and catch up with friends old and new.
There won’t be a live episode of Linux Outlaws tomorrow as we already have 3 already waiting for release. They should all be out in the next week, with the last one next weekend I expect. I’m running Fedora 11 at the moment, after some encouragement from the Fedora crew, and I’ll write up a review this week I hope. I also have some audio editing to do and I hope to get to at least one day of the EuroPython event in Birmingham. I’m thinking Wednesday or Thursday, if my body survives that long. It’s been quite a week, but I really should get down and support the event. We are listed as media partners after all. I’ll fill you in on what I get up to next Sunday. I should be landing in Manchester soon, the pilot just made an announcement, ooh exciting.
Take care till then everyone and I’ll see you soon,