Perl at FOSDEM

Karen Pauley just wrote about attending conferences that are not Perl specific.

I attended a few local non-Perl conferences and even gave talks about Perl and Parrot on some of these events but I never did it overseas.

FOSDEM is taking place every year in Brussels, Belgium. The next conference will be 6-7 February 2010 and I plan to be there.

Apparently this is one of the biggest Open Source conference and as I've heard there is hardly any Perl content. So I am interested in this conference both for learning what people using other technologies talk about and also as an opportunity to promote Perl and projects written in Perl.

Conference Format

As I understand the format of the conference, there are two main tracks with 50-minute long talks and two sessions of lightning talks in which each talk is 15 minutes long. (Yeah, I know the Perl conference attendees are used to 5-minute long lightning talks).

In addition there used to be developer rooms which are technology or field related tracks. Each subject having a single room for the 2 days of the conference full of talks. The idea of developer rooms is being reworked now, I'll have to see how it changes.

The 4th thing they have at FOSDEM are the stands. Each project can ask for a table and two chairs where they can talk to other people and show their stuff. This is basically an organized form of the hallway track.


I assume there won't be many Perl programmers so trying to fill a development room is probably not a good idea.

My plan is to submit one or two talks to the main track and to encourage more Perl developers to submit talks that can be interesting for people who are not yet Perl developers. For example I can imagine a Catalyst talk and even a Moose talk if targeted well.

I also hope that there will be a few people who can offer talks in the developer rooms on how Perl is solving the particular problem. For example I just saw on the FOSDEM mailing list a suggestion to organize an ODF developer room. I hope someone from the perl community will be able to offer a talk about ODF.

Lastly I'd like to setup a stand for Perl and related projects. For that there should be about 5-10 people who can be at the stand part of the time talking to other open source developers. (The organizers ask for two people at any given time at every stand).

Dave Cross has already submitted a talk and volunteered to be there part of that time. If you are also interested, please let me know so I can see that there are going to be enough people for this.