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OggCamp and LinuxCon Europe: Part 1 OggCamp

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Although it’s been over a week since I returned from both these events I thought I better put a little something up about them and the experiences I had there.

Unfortunately Oggcamp and LinuxCon followed each other directly this year, so it meant a lot of heaving about over the course of about a week. Here’s part 1 where I will detail my time at OggCamp.

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The event I look forward to all year, took a little longer to arrive this year due to it being moved to October (Oggtober?), happened over the weekend of the 19th & 20th October and much fun was to be had. As being part of the crew last year was so much fun (and hard work) I couldn’t resist doing the same this year, although I was a part timer this year due to also running a Fedora stand and a stand for our LUG (RossLUG). I arrived on the Friday evening to the guffaw of an unexpected art exhibition going off in the lobby of the John Lennon Art and Design building at John Moores University, I say unexpected as it was exactly that. The exhibition, although the building was booked for over 6 months, was arranged the week previous and we couldn’t gain access to setup much on the Friday. Even when that finished the caretaker decided enough was enough and it was home time. So off I went to find Rita’s B&B at the other side of town. Lovely place, a bit dated but very homely and Rita was lovely, I described her to various folks as looking like the oracle from the Matrix (the first one not the second). Proper tea, coffee and biscuits on the bedside table too!

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With the plan of an early night in mind, ready for crew duties early Saturday morning, I jumped in a cab down to Leaf on Bold street for a few (free it turned out) beers and a natter to a few familiar faces. It got to around 11:30 and I was wandering around saying bye to folks feeling good about heading home early when I (mistakenly?) approached Pete Cannon (@dick_turpin) to say good night. Pete: “Don’t go stay for another!”
Me: “I can’t I’ve got crew duties in the morning and I don’t want to be rough like I was last year, besides I’ve ran out of money”
Pete: “Ahh don’t worry about that, I’ll get you a beer”

Who am I to refuse a free beer? Anyway several beers later I managed to get in bed at around 3am!!! I think even Felim Whitely bought me a beer at some point.

7AM breakfast I said, urgh I hate the world! The bacon was actually drying whatever was left in my mouth and there wasn’t enough coffee in the world to make me wake up and enjoy anything!

Made it to the venue at around 7:45 and proceeded to get the Fedora and RossLUG tables setup for the day. The Fedora stand had the usual swag to be given away, stickers, badges DVDs. Where the RossLUG stand consisted of the various projects seen at the LUG mostly taken over by the home automation projects Tim (@tommybobbins) and myself have been working on. Oh and stickers!

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After setup of the venue and tables folks started arriving, pleasingly when Pete arrived he was looking a similar colour to his Creative Commons T-Shirt, and not the black one 🙂

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peterc

Breakfast butties arrived around 10:30 which complimented my full English nicely but unfortunately meant I couldn’t manage any of the pizza at lunch.

I wasn’t intending on going to many talks over the weekend as I prefer to chat to folks and manning the stands gave me a great opportunity to meet some fantastic people. But I did make it to Freaky Clowns (@__freakyclown__) talk which as always is brilliant but scares the shit out of me.

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The other session I made it to was the live podcast with the UUPC folks, Dan Lynch (@methoddan) from Linux Outlaws, and the Crew Chief and Full Circle Podcast host Les Pounder (@biglesp) which was entertaining, especially Dan not knowing the UUPC format… Avid listener then Dan?

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By evening time we were due to head to the Raquet Club near the docks for some food and more beers but I was just broken with tiredness by this point so drove up in the car, had a few measly portions of food (sat too far away from the kitchen) and headed to bed early. Yes I made it to bed before 11!

Sunday I really enjoyed breakfast, company of a Belgian doctor and a Dutch couple during the meal was nice too. Made it to the venue around 8:45 so nice and early to make sure the stands were setup for the day. Stu and Tim turned up nice and early too excited for the day ahead. Truggles not so excited and much too ill after a night at the “Crazy House”? hmmm best leaving that alone I think.

Another fab day which seemed to be a lot more chilled than the Saturday there also seemed to be a lot of different faces wandering around. I managed to head to the live recording of the Full Circle Podcast which was entertaining. The rafflecast ended up being quite entertaining for me as I had donated a Raspberry Pi as a prize, along with some caps and mugs from Fedora. The Pi got given away along with a mystery power supply but the caps and mugs were nowhere to be seen. Afterwards I headed to the cupboard where I put the prizes on the Friday to find them in the same place. Turned out that the Pi belonged to Les Pounder and was the digital signage/campfire manager terminal for downstairs. So instead of the expected noobs installer some lucky winner will be getting some nice digital signage.

So that topped off the day nicely, all that was left for me to do was help clear up and jump in the car for Edinburgh.

Highlights of the weekend:

  • Seeing the people I only see once or twice throughout the year, whom I regard probably more as friends than people I see more regularly.
  • Meeting people with similar interests, such as the chap (I really wish I caught his name) who took a real interest in the home automation projects Tim and myself are working on.
  • Freaky Clowns talk of course.
  • The amount of technical bods it took to not get a Pi working on the WiFi and brick a router.

Lowlights:

  • Missing the TDTRS recording, although I know I will catch the podcast.
  • Having to wait another year to do it all again.