DebConf16/DC15 reflections

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Reflections on mainly the technical content of DebConf15 by the CLUG (Cape Town Linux User Group) who attended, mainly for a CLUG presentation on Tuesday 8 September. DebConf communication is mainly through discussions on IRC (#debconf, Freenode).


[edit] Links

[edit] Jonathan Carter (highvoltage)

Cool things in Debian:

  • Reproducible builds Debian Wiki
  • Wanna-build work and working towards PPAs for Debian
  • LTSP 6: Talk with Vagrant, move to fat-clients by default
  • Debian LTS
  • Debian Trademark evolution

Things I worked on during Debcamp:

  • zram-tools
  • python-flask-restful
  • ubiquity (getting help from Canonical staff!)
  • Debian video team - failing hard with VLC

My Talk(s):

  • AIMS Desktop, with a focus on Ubuntu licensing problems - Talk Slides
  • Debconf 16, In Cape Town! - Talk Slides


  • Lots of Mau, beer, debbug!
  • Total information overload, catch-up on talks at the Video Archive
  • DC16! Pollito has already made his trip down! Short Story
  • I took some pics

[edit] Nigel Kukard (nkukard)

My interest was almost all orga/DC related.

I spent half of DebCamp hacking at packaging and improving packages:

  • awit-dbackup
  • policyd-cluebringer
  • cputool
  • ppp-gatekeeper

Most of the rest of DebCamp I was talking to other orga members regarding the budget, processes and attending the orga (and other DC-related) sprints.

I'm still catching up watching the talks from the video archive.

I never got debbug ;)

[edit] Graham Inggs (ginggs)

I spent DebCamp meeting and talking to people I've worked in teams with in the past, but never met in person. I also met new (to me) people like Jonas Smedegaard and Kris Rose, and the ShowMeBox ( ) was born. I attended Orga meetings and badgered Jonathan and Nigel to start their NM (Debian New Member) processes. I also reviewed one of Jonathan's packages, but am waiting for him to make some changes before I can upload it. During that week, my key was moved from the DM (Debian Maintainer) keyring to the DD (Debian Developer) keyring and I officially became a Debian Developer. I met Julien Cristau of the Release Team and managed to get LibXP (a deprecated printing extension for X windows) finally removed from the archive and got a stable update of Motif approved for Debian Jessie.

Highlights of DebConf15 itself were the Debian-Science, DebiChem, Python and ARM BoFs, hacking on python-support removal with the Python packaging team, and meeting Paul Gevers, whom I work with in the Pascal packaging team.

[edit] Stefano Rivera (tumbleweed)

My priority was the video team, so from the week before DebCamp, to the end of DebConf, that was mostly what I was working on. See DebConf15/FinalReport/Video for the full story.

Once the conference was under way, I was providing second-level support for the video team. Troubleshooting hardware problems, and stream outages. This meant that when I sat down to watch a talk, I didn't always got to see it through to the end. Often having to run off to look at a problem, in another room. So I don't have too many talk highlights to list.

When I wasn't run off my feet, we managed to squeeze some useful DebConf16 discussion in, some games of Mao, and a fair amount of beer.

The Python BoF was the only scheduled event I had to be at. And after that I spent a lot of slack time during the rest of the conference, NMU-ing python packages, to replace python-support with dh_python2. The work on this continues...

Oh, and of course, I spent the second half of the conference (and the two weeks after it) suffering from the debbug :( Nobody likes the debbug.

[edit] Allison Randal (wendar)

[edit] Bernelle Verster (indiebio)

My main interest was open hardware related:

  • Two contests, no waiting! -- Jon 'maddog' Hall ( Embedded Debian and Hardware-Level Systems , Plenary, video stream of the talk )
  • ARM ports BoF -- Steve McIntyre ( Other )
  • Developing products in the open -- Andy Simpkins ( Debian in the Social, Ethical, Legal, and Political Context , Embedded Debian and Hardware-Level Systems, video stream of the talk )

Other talks I enjoyed:

  • Debian's Central Role in the Future of Software Freedom -- Bradley M. Kuhn ( Plenary, slides are available )
  • Philosophy of Free Software -- Allison Randal
  • Enrico's semi serious stand up comedy -- Enrico Zini
  • The Economics of Volunteers: Three Debian stories -- Asheesh Laroia ( Debian Success Stories, video stream of the talk )
  • AIMS: African Institute for Mathematical Sciences -- Jonathan Carter ( Debian Success Stories )
  • What is to be done - Reflections on Free Software Usage -- Jacob Appelbaum ( Plenary )

Some sessions I wanted to see but haven't yet (some are on video stream so I might update this...)

  • Tails: a technical overview -- Andres Gomez ( Security, Safety, Hacking, and Cryptography )
  • Debian and HP: A Fresh Perspective -- Bdale Garbee ( Plenary )
  • Debian GIS BoF -- Andreas Tille ( Blends, Subprojects, Derivatives, and Projects using Debian )
  • SPI BOF -- Bdale Garbee ( Other )

I also attended the DebiChem and Debian Science and DebiMed BoFs, but I have no clue what's going on there.

I attended the Publicity talk and BoF, and volunteered to do a weekly Debian thing, something like a short blog on where Debian is used in real life, aimed at people whose knowledge of computers go as far as 'I have no idea what goes on inside it, but this thing is useful to my hobby'

  • Debian: A giant with a tiny voice? -- Cédric Boutillier ( Debian in the Social, Ethical, Legal, and Political Context )
  • The BoF: Debian Publicity: what can we do better? -- Cédric Boutillier ( Debian in the Social, Ethical, Legal, and Political Context )
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