SVLUG Speaker Openings

Posted 22 Jan 2002 at 03:44 UTC by stevegt Share This

The Silicon Valley Linux User Group (SVLUG) has openings for speakers for several upcoming monthly meetings, beginning in March 2002. The question is, how to fill them?

SVLUG is the oldest and perhaps the largest LUG on the planet -- started in 1988 as PC-UNIX SIG, meetings today range from 2-500 attendees. Past speakers include Linus Torvalds, Marc Andreessen, Tim O'Reilly, Paul Vixie, and Larry Wall. Past speaker coordinators include Sam Ockman, who went on to found Penguin Computing.

As the brand-new speaker coordinator for the group, I'm saddled, ahem, gifted with the task of figuring out how to follow that act.

With the recent economic implosion of so many companies here in the Valley, I went into this task thinking "Sure, no problem, should be plenty of smart folks lining up to stand in front of a few hundred people and talk about what they're good at."

Hasn't happened. I'm seeing a curiously apathetic response so far. Sure, SVLUG, being a volunteer organization, can't pay travel or honorariums. But the density of local talent is pretty high -- all of those luminaries I mentioned above live near here, most within a 10-mile radius of where I'm sitting right now.

And people do speak for other reasons. It's a great way to generate job and other leads, if it comes to that. It's a great way to get collaborators on a project. Sometimes, it's just fun to get up there, talk, and get feedback. I've learned a lot when speaking about technical subjects; there's always someone in the audience who can see further than you can on something you're stuck on, and they usually don't hesitate to shout it out. ;-)

So why the apathy? Are people burned out after the last few years? Too busy job-hunting to do any career-building? Cashed out, retired, and done giving back? Clinical depression? Predicting Imminent Death of Linux and the Internet(tm)?

Advogato members are extremely appropriate LUG speakers -- thoughtful, active in the community, articulate. Some of you have already already spoken here. If any of you live in the area, have a topic which you think would be of general interest to the Linux and open source community, and would enjoy speaking in front of a few hundred kindred souls, contact me at

- Steve

I'd like to see, posted 24 Jan 2002 at 17:39 UTC by sej » (Master)

How about taking a different tact, and ask advogatians from Silicon Valley who they'd like to see as speakers? It doesn't seem like anyone is volunteering themselves, but volunteering others might work :-).

I'd certainly go see raph or lpd. Or maybe wsanchez if he wanted to talk about OS X. And bagder or bernhard if they were ever in town. Who else?

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