Soliciting Feedback for OLS

Posted 15 Jul 2002 at 15:27 UTC by sad Share This

It's difficult to get quality feedback after an event. We hear complaints often, but hardly ever do we hear what we did right.

It's difficult to get quality feedback after an event. We hear complaints often, but hardly ever do we hear what we did right.

We're looking for comments regarding the Ottawa Linux Symposium. What did you like about it? What did you not like about it? What did we do well, and what did we mess up? If you have any suggestions regarding the event, post them here. Please be specific. We don't mind hearing, "It sucked." as long as you tell us WHY it sucked.

We love reading reports on our event too! If you have any, please feel free to post them.


It was pretty nice, posted 15 Jul 2002 at 22:20 UTC by walken » (Master)

I thought the tech talks were really interesting - more so than last year, because all the gnome-gui-and-apps talks were gone, and kernel/lowlevel stuff is what I'm more interested in hearing about personally. Talks I really liked include read-copy-update, the one about traffic shaping, the one about x86-64 and the one about futexes.

I'm the one who won a QT book. Did I mention that I don't care too much about gui stuff already ? :)

There was not as much beer as two years ago, and I kinda missed that (I mean, not really the beer, but the conviviality/spirit that goes with it), but I dont think it depends that much on you actually (i.e. your sponsors probably dont have as much money to throw around as they used to)

More daylight! ;-), posted 16 Jul 2002 at 16:26 UTC by lmb » (Master)

The conference was great, as it usually is -- well, I can't comment on the first, but the last three all were. The two official parties on Saturday and Sunday were very enjoyable, although more parties can't ever hurt.

The only complaint, as usual - even as a geek I enjoy day light from time to time, instead of only medium-intensity artificial light... If it would be at all possible to find a better venue for the conference, that would be much appreciated. I also can't stand the food court in the mall any longer, they haven't changed their offering in the last three years either ;-)

Oh, and I won the Managing MySQL book -- maybe O'Reilly could be given a list of books which people could actually use at that conference? ;) (Vouchers!)

Looking forward to being in Ottawa next year once more.

Shifting schedules, posted 17 Jul 2002 at 01:16 UTC by pphaneuf » (Journeyer)

I guess this must be pretty hard, because it wouldn't happen otherwise, but the swiftly changing schedule was a bit annoying. I go in a room to watch a talk, but its another talk, and it turns out I'm actually in the right room. Maybe I didn't watch carefully enough for some updated schedule on display somewhere, but on the other hand, if there was such a thing, I didn't see it, right?

I seem to remember that last year, there was a sign at every rooms door, but I might remember wrong.

I liked this years conference, but compared to last year, I thought that they had a more uneven level of quality. Last year, I thought most talks were pretty good, but this years I thought that half the talks were not so good, but the other half was excellent, so that kind of compensated.

I didn't like much last year's GNOME "GUI and apps" talks either, but they weren't outright bad either, and there was a whole lot of kernel stuff this year for a user-space guy like me, probably due to the OLS following right in the trail of the Kernel Summit.

There was sure a lot of jokes being made about the book selection for the raffle! "Winning the 'Kernel Programming for Dummies'... Alan Cox!"

BOFs made a big difference, posted 17 Jul 2002 at 12:15 UTC by zeevon » (Journeyer)

Although there were BOF sessions at OLS 2001, they weren't in the "official" schedule. There was a free room and those interested could sign up for it and post a message near the front desk.

I really appreciated having the BOFs in the regular schedule so that I could plan out my evenings (without seeing a message on the board and realizing that I just missed a discussion that would have interested me). It was also nice to have a few non-technical sessions, such as Copyright Reform and Getting Open Source Into Governments.

A small complaint: it would be nice to have the audio from 2001 available on the web site.

I thought it was fairly nice too., posted 17 Jul 2002 at 17:46 UTC by davidm » (Master)

This years OLS was the second OLS I've attended. I prefered the variety of the year before. That said I enjoyed the topics presented this year quite a lot. I did think including the BOF's in the regular schedule was good. Next year I'll get off my duff and submit a paper which will not be about kernel topics and perhaps there will be more variety to be had.

Couple of suggestions:
1) Use a transparent proxy on the 802.11b network. To switch midstream to a standard proxy was a pain in the tail.

2) Put up more 802.11b base stations.

3) Have a local web server/site onsite that can be kept up-to-date realtime so schedule changes are easy to do and more BOF's can be added on the fly so to speak.

4) Information on the local web server to the local eateries, not knowing Ottawa and having a limited time for lunch I was restricted to the food court far too much.

I thought it was fairly nice too., posted 17 Jul 2002 at 17:46 UTC by davidm » (Master)

This years OLS was the second OLS I've attended. I prefered the variety of the year before. That said I enjoyed the topics presented this year quite a lot. I did think including the BOF's in the regular schedule was good. Next year I'll get off my duff and submit a paper which will not be about kernel topics and perhaps there will be more variety to be had.

Couple of suggestions:
1) Use a transparent proxy on the 802.11b network. To switch midstream to a standard proxy was a pain in the tail.

2) Put up more 802.11b base stations.

3) Have a local web server/site onsite that can be kept up-to-date realtime so schedule changes are easy to do and more BOF's can be added on the fly so to speak.

4) Information on the local web server to the local eateries, not knowing Ottawa and having a limited time for lunch I was restricted to the food court far too much.

I thought it was fairly nice too., posted 17 Jul 2002 at 17:46 UTC by davidm » (Master)

This years OLS was the second OLS I've attended. I prefered the variety of the year before. That said I enjoyed the topics presented this year quite a lot. I did think including the BOF's in the regular schedule was good. Next year I'll get off my duff and submit a paper which will not be about kernel topics and perhaps there will be more variety to be had.

Couple of suggestions:
1) Use a transparent proxy on the 802.11b network. To switch midstream to a standard proxy was a pain in the tail.

2) Put up more 802.11b base stations.

3) Have a local web server/site onsite that can be kept up-to-date realtime so schedule changes are easy to do and more BOF's can be added on the fly so to speak.

4) Information on the local web server to the local eateries, not knowing Ottawa and having a limited time for lunch I was restricted to the food court far too much.

I thought it was fairly nice too., posted 17 Jul 2002 at 17:46 UTC by davidm » (Master)

This years OLS was the second OLS I've attended. I prefered the variety of the year before. That said I enjoyed the topics presented this year quite a lot. I did think including the BOF's in the regular schedule was good. Next year I'll get off my duff and submit a paper which will not be about kernel topics and perhaps there will be more variety to be had.

Couple of suggestions:
1) Use a transparent proxy on the 802.11b network. To switch midstream to a standard proxy was a pain in the tail.

2) Put up more 802.11b base stations.

3) Have a local web server/site onsite that can be kept up-to-date realtime so schedule changes are easy to do and more BOF's can be added on the fly so to speak.

4) Information on the local web server to the local eateries, not knowing Ottawa and having a limited time for lunch I was restricted to the food court far too much.

I thought it was fairly nice too., posted 17 Jul 2002 at 17:46 UTC by davidm » (Master)

This years OLS was the second OLS I've attended. I prefered the variety of the year before. That said I enjoyed the topics presented this year quite a lot. I did think including the BOF's in the regular schedule was good. Next year I'll get off my duff and submit a paper which will not be about kernel topics and perhaps there will be more variety to be had.

Couple of suggestions:
1) Use a transparent proxy on the 802.11b network. To switch midstream to a standard proxy was a pain in the tail.

2) Put up more 802.11b base stations.

3) Have a local web server/site onsite that can be kept up-to-date realtime so schedule changes are easy to do and more BOF's can be added on the fly so to speak.

4) Information on the local web server to the local eateries, not knowing Ottawa and having a limited time for lunch I was restricted to the food court far too much.

Short summary for Steph, posted 17 Jul 2002 at 19:48 UTC by Zaitcev » (Master)

I wrote about it before and e-mailed Andrew, too, so here is a very brief summary for Steph specifically.

  • Wireless was dramatically improved over the last year. Yes, GB argued with Mike Ph. about putting all base stations on the same channel. But perhaps it was to the better: this year you could travel rooms without losing the signal. I suspect people who ask for more base stations may be missing something. I think, well done. Internet connection was another story entirely, but I was only interested in IRC access to the rmk's box.
  • BOFs encroach onto the talk space; people who schedule BOFs appear to make mini-talks or sometimes fully featured presentations. I think it may be a good idea to disable any sort of projectors in BOF rooms to discourage presentations. Actually interesting BOFs also formed on the fly; I went to gregkh/mochel's discussion, and sparc.
  • Make it a matter of the policy to review papers, and not just abstracts. If speakers must get more disciplined, that's too tough.

lmb: Food cort sucks monkey balls, I gave up on it very soon and ate in Marcelino and Elephant Castle. Marcelino's pricing is pretty competitive.

A map!, posted 18 Jul 2002 at 00:18 UTC by Telsa » (Master)

A map showing the relative positions of these would be handy: Les Suites, the mall, the congress centre, the Byward Market, Chapters (ahem) and perhaps the LCBO. For walkers, not drivers :)

And rather than a map, a "go in. Now go up/straightahead/right/blah" route through that mall which starts at the nearest entrance to Les Suites and ends up at the congress centre. I am convinced the signs are actually to encourage traffic flow in a circle there, not to get anyone to the right place in the fastest time. Unbelievable.

And although I found the way out via the car park, my attempts to get in that way led to the discovery of far more car parks than you'd think possible! It took me until the last day to discover that you could start by the entrance to the mall nearest Les Suites and go straight down that alley to the right and arrive in the Byward.

So yeah, a map.

Adding the message board was a good idea. It ended up with everything from "Want to watch the football? Call me on..." to "If you are getting constant reboots on the wireless network then download..." on it.

Telling people in advance that Les Suites has no room service but ample cooking facilities would be a thought.

I would certainly have liked more talks about applications, but I may be going against the flow here.

I liked the appearance of BOFs through the conference, but a much more prominent place to look for them would have been good: perhaps getting first speakers of morning and afternoon to remind people to look would have worked.

I can't fault the wireless network: hugely improved from the last time I was there (two years ago). A proxy from the very start is probably worth doing.

Telling people in advance what cards would be accepted for the wireless cards (and whether cash is acceptable) might have soothed a few tempers in the queue.

I really enjoyed it though. Good staff on the registration, see :)

Telsa (didn't win a book..)

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