LinuxCon Vancouver 2011

I did a talk at the 2011 LinuxCon in Vancouver. I met a lot of cool folks, saw a lot of cool technology, and had an absolute blast. I took notes during the whole event, and put them up for posterity.

LinuxCon main stage

August 16th

3 PM MST - Calgary

Tannis and I walk to 7th Ave and 5th and wait for the 300 bus (which is a direct bus from downtown to the airport). I’m a ball of nerves.

The bus takes me to the airport, and I wander around, getting a touch of dinner at the A&W (a Mama burger combo, to be exact).

I realize then that the Calgary International Airport is just damn pleasant. I’ve been to many airports, and it is the most friendly and relaxed airport. I pass through security without incident.

I get a bottle of 2008 pinot noir for Lukasz’ mom Jolanta as a thank-you gift for letting me sleep at her place during the conference.

6 PM MST - Calgary

I board the WestJet flight. There’s no one sitting next to me, so my knees and elbows are free to move about.

I read a little of my book (“Fear and Loathing on the Campaign Trail ‘72” by Hunter S. Thompson), and then code for about half an hour. The flight is going smoothly.

6:22 PM PST - Vancouver

The plane lands on time, and the skies of Vancouver are clear. I walk towards the baggage claim, with no idea of what Jolanta really looks like. In an email to me earlier, she had given me details of what she looked like, but as I scan the faces in the area, I realize this matches many of the women at the baggage claim. I walk into the terminal and just as I am about to pull out a “Jolanta” sign I made up on a piece of paper, I meet eyes with a woman walking through the doors who I quickly realize is her.

We exchange pleasantries, and we drive on to Surrey.

6:30 PM PST - Surrey

Jolanta points out all the sights along the way to the house, as well as the train station. We pull into a pleasant side street, which is where she lives.

I get a tour of the house, and give her the bottle of wine I had gotten at the airport.

8:00 PM PST - Surrey

I go for a walk around the park that is next to her house, taking pictures along the way. It is a relaxing walk, and it gets the nerves out.

There is a couple smoking pot, and a little further a group of teenagers bragging about which drugs they’ve taken.

8:45 PM PST - Surrey

Jolanta has fixed me up some tortellini with tomato sauce, as well as slices of fresh baguette with margarine.

We end up talking, and the wine comes out along with some dark 70% chocolate.

August 17th

7 AM PST - Vancouver / LinuxCon

I get off the SkyTrain at Burrard station, and I’m quite impressed by the architecture in the downtown. After a minor detour to the bank, I walk to the Hyatt, passing several bums sleeping on the street.

I register for the conference, and it turns out I am an hour early. I get a T-shirt and an inukshuk for being a speaker.

I wander through the sponsors area, and my swaghound behaviour becomes worse than ever. I get a pack of cards, and static cleaner, pens, stickers, another t-shirt, a rubber duckie, and an LED flashlight.

9 AM PST - LinuxCon

I’m in a massive keynote area, and by fluke I’ve gotten a great front-row table seat in the keynote hall.

The stage is massive, and I can tell a lot of money and thought has gone into this conference.

The room is packed - 500 people at least

Despite there being a continental breakfast, I didn’t grab any, and I’m regretting this as my stomach gurgles in the keynote hall.

Jim Zemlin (head of Linux Foundation) enters the stage to “Eye of the Tiger,” and his jokes kill the floor.

He announces that SPDX 1.0 has come out, which is a standard way to share licenses with software.

His talk is “A World Without Linux.” He’s got a bluescreen bit on his slide, and it gets people chuckling in their seats. His Microsoft bashing is a bit gutsy, and I’m honestly surprised by the bluntness - expecting a soft, gooey, feel-good talk. His slides are out of order in some parts, but he handles it with grace, and it doesn’t stop him a bit.

He mostly uses a before-and-after quoting style. ‘Here is the old quote, here is the new quote that refutes it.’

He notes that he’s said “it’s the year of the Linux Desktop” since 2007, and jokily says that “2012 is the year of the Linux Desktop, baby!”

He shows the Microsoft Linux birthday video

“Linux is on the Right Side of History” - doomed last words?

“Sharing works”

Jim hands it over to Jim Whitehurst, Red Hat CEO - “The Challenges of the Next 20 Years of Linux”

“Easier to talk about history than about the future”

Says he is a geek. Started on Slackware, moved to Fedora. Uber-excited when called by Red Hat.

“Linux is a viable alternative to traditional server stacks”

‘New businesses are starting on Linux’ - now Google

Linux is fantastic for rapid prototyping (and I totally agree)

“If you can’t innovate cheaply, the overall amount of innovation stalls”

No longer catching up, Linux is leading.

When users drive innovation, what you get is fundamentally more user-friendly and what people want

Paradigm shift in technology - bottom-up innovation

Russian government uses NSA-created SELinux

“I have NO idea” (on what will happen over the next 20 years)

10:30 AM PST - LinuxCon

I start setting up my talk. Initially, I figure about 7 people will come to the talk, but about 40-50 people turn out.

Despite the occasional stumbles and stammers, the talk goes well, and the crowd got a lot out of it.

There’s a rush of people from other LUG’s after the talk asking questions, and exiting the room run into Linux columnist Bruce Byfield. In the hallway I am pulled away by Jim Lacey and Darrell Flewell (CEO and CFO, respectively) of the Linux Professionals Institute. We discuss working together, and it goes extremely well. Cards are traded.

I’m so thrown off-kilter by the response, I find myself in the lobby in a daze.

I do a bit more swag-hounding, and then spot Jim Zemlin. I talk briefly [STRIKEOUT:with] at him about the idea of, and he directs me to Amanda McPherson, who’s in charge of the site. As we’re about to exchange cards, I realize that I had dumped my business cards in my backpack, which is stuffed with swag. I’m crouching on the floor, red-faced, searching my backpack for a damn card as her arm is outstretched with hers. Inside my head is the sound of thousands of screechy voices howling in laughter. I give her a card, and walk away embarrassed and full of defeat.

As I’m cursing myself, I meet Chani Armitage who does X programming for KDE.

12:30 PM PST - LinuxCon

I visit the Linux 20th Anniversary museum. There’s some interesting items on the exhibit (the books that Linus Torvalds used when writing Linux), and then a lot of other junk (Ted T’so’s first Linux computer, a receipt from Red Hat’s first sale, old vendor discs).

Ideas > old promotional items.

2 PM PST - LinuxCon

Jon Corbet does a talk on the history of Linux

‘0.01 didn’t need to do much - it just needed to show a prompt’

The kernel had a tendency to slip schedules

2.0 - someone finally added a /documentation directory

Steady schedule after 2.6.10

“Linus does not scale”

At this point, I realize I’m sitting next to John ‘Maddog’ Hall. Life has just gotten a little weirder.

‘Anyone who knows the Linux kernel doesn’t stay a volunteer for long’

“We’ve had the good fortune to be attacked by idiots”

“As people keep on using Linux there will be work to do”

3 PM PST - LinuxCon

Bdale Garbee speaks about the FreedomBox Foundation. He’s wearing a tie-dye t-shirt and white running shoes

Two guys behind me will not stop talking

FBF four pillars: Technology, User Experience, Publicity and Fund-Raising, and Industry Relations

I’m beginning to get tired - it’s been a long day.

There’s work being done for making PGP key signing easier with QR codes

4 PM PST - LinuxCon

I get front row for the keynotes again. I talk with some other geeks also sitting front row, and we’re chuckling at the fact that the back fills up before the front.

Have a quick conversation with Jon Corbet.

The keynote starts with a panel between Jon “Maddog” Hall, Eben Moglen (Director-Counsel at Software Freedom Law Center) and Dan Frye (VP of Open Systems Development at IBM), with Jim Zemlin moderating.

They discuss how they first came about Linux

Zemlin zinger - “It would be unusual for IBM to make a decision that quick”

I realize Maddog is totally the “Old Unix Guy” stereotype. It’s awesome. He’s wearing a Tux tie and a vest.

Hall: ‘The last point of my slide had a bullet saying Linux is Inevitable. They asked me what it meant. I told them that it will get very big. They laughed at me. Now they all work at Red Hat.’

It’s better to have technical discussions within the community instead of on internal mailing lists.

Moglen - “Linux is the steel and coal of the 21st century industrial revolution”

Moglen is pretty sure that the patent situation won’t be as bad as toxic mortgages, but still pretty bad.

Patent warfare is a serious threat to Linux

Hall - “The only thing we’ve gotten out of patents is a talking paperclip.”

Zemlin ‘Anyone know what we’ll have in 2031?’ Frye ‘The desktop’

Moglen “The works of imagination are unpredictable”

Maddog’s final word - “People are still waiting for the letter of authorization” - there’s no need to be authorized, and when people realize that, Linux will get huge

Linus Torvalds and Greg Kroah-Hartman hit the stage to massive applause

Torvalds “People don’t want me to name it 3.1 because it brings back bad memories”

GKH gives Linus another bottle of whiskey. Linus is thrilled and gives two thumbs up - ‘I get another one!’

Linus ‘I’m pretty far removed from the day-to-day coding’

Torvalds “If someone tries to do another x-notify I will shoot you”

ARM has no standard platform, so it’s a disaster. It’s got way more LOC than x86, which is pretty sad.

Linus harshes out application developers - “they’re weenies, they’re not real men”

They hope they won’t need new tools to keep scaling - the rate of hardware growth hasn’t improved greatly lately

Linus - “I’m not afraid of forks” as it’s expensive to maintain forks over the long run

Zemlin: “Bloggers, I’ve written your headline for you: ‘Linux creator calls virtualization evil, world disagrees’”

6 PM PST - LinuxCon

In the lobby I’m interviewed by John Harig. We discuss Linux User Groups and our failures and successes with them.

6:30 PM PST - Commodore Ballroom

I walk to the Commodore Ballroom, which is bedecked in 1920’s decor to celebrate the 20th birthday. There’s gambling tables all over, a swing band playing, and long buffet tables in the center

The bar tab is being covered by Intel, so I feel it is my duty to drink at least an airplane ticket’s worth.

I grab a few drinks, and find myself at the roulette table with Marten Mickos and Jim Whitehurst. We discuss the odds in gambling, and how the house has an advantage over the long term. I try to get Jim to commit to a crazy night, except he has a flight in the morning. Bah, obligations.

I see two people who had attended the talk, and I get their opinions on LUGs.

I spot Maddog. Me: ‘So what do you think LUG’s need to succeed?’ Maddog: ‘They need to be more aggressive and stop pussyfooting.’ Me: ‘So basically we just need to kick ass?’ Maddog: “Yeah, just kick ass.” I compliment his tie. A woman says ‘Maddog, you’ve lost weight,’ to which he responds “Well, diabetes is good for some things.” Maddog is awesome.

I’m pulled onto the dance floor by a woman in 20s costume, and she tries teaching me swing dancing. I’m fairly inebriated, and my dancing ability is sub-par, but I manage not to step on her toes.

I take a picture at the photo booth.

Eben Moglen walks by, and I tell him he’s got a fan base in Calgary, and that if he ever needs anything there just to let me know. He hands me a card, says “don’t worry about it,” and keeps on walking. Like a boss.

Mental tally of bar tab: around $60

10 PM PST - Vancouver/Surrey

I sit in the seat at the front of the car that looks face-to-face to the other car. I try miming conversation to the woman, but besides a hand wave she ignores me.

I talk with a guy named Nick(?), who works in film. We discuss the need for adventure and fun in life.

Some guy says “That’s a pimp tie” to me. Minutes later he mentions that I’ve got a shit-eating grin. Me: “It’s been a great day, and I just got drunk on Intel’s dime.” Life is good right now.

11 PM PST - Surrey

I fall asleep with the laptop on, fully draining the battery.

August 18th

6 AM PST - Surrey

I wake up not hungover, but definitely dehydrated. The SkyTrain is pretty full, so I’m standing up the entire way, cursing the weight of my laptop.

9 AM PST - LinuxCon

Got front row for keynotes again - thinking it’s not a fluke anymore

Jim Zemlin comes out to Eye of the Tiger again, and tells the A/V guy that’s the last time.

He’s surprised that there’s this many people after last night’s party. I’m not.

He introduces Irving Wladawsky-Berger (Chairman Emeritus of IBM) - “Linux: a Disruptive Force - Then and Now”

He brings up that this year is IBM’s centennial as well.

He’s showing old LinuxWorld 2000 slides

The reason why IBM went with Linux is the same reason they went with the Internet. “Of course it runs on...”

Since they can be sure that Linux will run on stuff that hasn’t even been invented yet, that’s a major marketing and sales coup.

IBM was accused by one critic of being ‘communist’. Hilarious. Irving has a gentle humor that’s doing quite well with the crowd.

He points to the Cambrian Explosion, where cells created increasingly complex organisms

Cloud computing is the internet of services and applications

The decreasing cost of technology is reducing the “digital divide” and democratizing access to consumer, business and government e-services of all sorts

The next generation of applications and solutions will reach out to everybody since there is no longer a digital divide.

Cloud enables ubiquitous access

Businesses need to be efficient, quick bringing new things to market

There is nothing that couldn’t be made ‘smarter’

Over %50 live in urban environments

Linux will be big in analytics and supercomputing

If you treat machines as brute-force machines and toss a lot of data at it, you get something a bit like intelligence.

Phil Robb from HP is brought out - “Enabling Developers with webOS and the Power of Open Source & Linux”

Some good old SCO bashing - always fun!

I should have brought my water bottle - I’m hurting a bit now.

This seems more like an ad than a talk - not really getting anything out of it.

He has a slide where Tux looks like he is wigged out on coke

His talk is 10 minutes over, and myself and the person next to me are annoyed.

He offers a free Touchpad to whoever stands up and yells “WebOS rocks!” It takes a surprisingly long time before someone does it.

10:30 AM PST

Go to Linux Kernel Programming for Beginners, with Robert Day

Learn how to make my own character drivers

12:30 PM PST - LinuxCon

I walk around the Vancouver downtown and waterfront. It smells like feces, cigarette smoke, and the ocean.

2 PM PST - LinuxCon

Panel talk on increasing desktop market penetration

Sitting next to Maddog again. He wishes the conference was a little more technical.

I’m realizing that those who really care and make great advances in Linux sit front row. Note to self - always sit front row.

3 PM PST - LinuxCon

Ted Ts’o talk on Ext4 on the Cloud

Ext4 is now highly stable on most common configurations

As it’s highly tunable, there’s problems at times with less common configurations

Discussions on replacing ex2 and ext3 with ext4 (sometimes faster, less stuff to test)

Ext4 is a “modern” filesystem that is still reasonably simple (probably be good code to browse)

Whoa - Minix is only 2513 LOC. I could read that over a weekend.

Ext4 benefits from its lineage (solid userspace utilities and Journal Block layer)

Disadvantages - fixed inode table, bitmap based allocations, 32-bit inode numbers, weak RAID support

There is no General Purpose File System - there’s just different needs. A lot of workloads don’t stress the filesystem.

Is Platform-As-A-Service a transitional thing?

Having trust of putting data in the datacenter (odd coming from a Google guy)

Restricted memory means less caching available

Disk capacities have been growing, but seek times not so much

“Ten things we know to be true” - Google statement

A few slow operations effectively slows down its peers in a distributed computation - so every part must be efficient and quick

Bigalloc (clustered allocation) - reduces metadata required to be cached, fs more fragmentation resistant, minimizes changes to the fs code. Mind, now small files still take a cluster worth of space (eg 3k taking up 64k block). Allows addressing of larger FS, but sparse files are a pain.

Moving to 64k made huge difference in operations per bitmap load

No Journal Mode for Ext4 at Google - “Don’t pay for features you don’t need”. If you turn off the journal when pushing lots of data and CPU, Ext4 does WAY better than XFS.

There’s lots of new things coming for Ext4

For audio-video, 1 MB size would be quite alright. This knowledge alone made this talk well worth it.

4 PM PST - LinuxCon

Zemlin introduces Mark Charlebois - “Demand for Mobility Drives Open Source Innovation”

Smart powergrids tell people when it’s cheaper to run things

This guy isn’t exactly blowing me away with charisma, a lot of dead air.

2011 is the year of Linux on the mobile - and that’s not hype.

6.4 Android mobiles sold a second - 4.4 births a second

Someone’s cellphone is playing Creedance Clearwater Revival rather loudly. It plays for over a minute. Gets the crowd laughing.

Qualcomm will try harder to work with the upstream - just open-sourced Gobi API (likely a move to control future direction)

Announces the DragonBoard - seems like it has some nifty stuff, available September

Just another ad-keynote. Bummer. If sponsors are going to get a keynote spot, their talks should at least be vetted. Everyone’s eyes are on their laptops, phones - bored :-(

Next keynote speaker is Clay Shirky - “Good Collaboration in 2 Words: Structured Fighting”

Clay’s opening is dissecting a hilarious Firefox bug. He kills the floor right off the bat.

Using the whole world as a talent pool, it pretty much cemented Linux’ dominance

100 million hours to make Wikipedia, 1 trillion hours spent every year just watching television.

There’s a cognitive surplus - once you find a pocket of talent, you can do extraordinary things

Hypnerotomachia Poliphili the first printed erotic novel - came well before the first science literature

When new communication tools bring pools of people together, things happen.

More communication means more fighting. Can you structure the fighting?

Alchemy became chemistry when fighting became structured. Alchemists hid their work, chemists published them. The beginnings of peer-review.

Usually one person is the most active contributor by quite a bit, but there’s a large pool. Small, tight groups integrating large amounts of participation.

Peter Suber’s game Nomic (where rules are changed as part of the game)

StackOverflow a great site for structured fighting.

New users should be indoctrinated. Reward good behaviour with more power (more admin tools, etc).

Mozilla dashboard shows most active contributors - good way to keep people in the group

Technology and the human pattern have to match up

Getting the community to care is the hard part, but good code is a side-effect

Flashbake - git for novels

Open-Knesset - make political argumentation in Israel work better

Audacity beats predictability over the long-haul

We need better ways to deal with fighting on the internet to get the maximum worth

Clay’s talk was awesome.

6 PM PST - Terminal City Club

I decide to head to the VIP dinner early and get a few drinks in. I spot Tim Griffen and we chat a bit about the conference. Maddog joins at the table, and we talk current events.

We’re drinking wine glass-for-glass, Maddog on the white and I’m on the red. We basically decide to let the entire party come to our table. It stays that way for the rest of the night, and I hear the history of computing from the guy who’s been there since way early on.

‘I don’t talk about cost anymore; with cost you can only race to zero. With value, you can go to infinite.’

Grace Hopper story - ‘She had just gotten this office and was assigned these ensigns, and there was no furniture. She went to all these ensigns and said ‘tonight, go to all the offices and get whatever isn’t being used.’ So the next day have bookshelves, desks, all the things they need. The other leaders in the navy were pissed off that she had taken their stuff. She said ‘isn’t this stuff owned by the US government? Isn’t this stuff paid for by the taxpayers? You weren’t using it.’ She also outranked them all, so their complaints weren’t going to be heard.’

Grace Hopper story - ‘She was getting older, and she asked the ensign to find her a nanosecond. The ensign thinks she’s just getting older, and that she’s losing it. He forgets about it, and then 5 months or so later she brings him into the office. ‘Where’s my nanosecond?’ The guy is just sitting there with his mouth open, and she says ‘Don’t you think for one second I’ve forgotten about this. You’ve not handled a direct request - don’t think this won’t show up on your report.’ So the guy comes back a month later, looking like he hasn’t slept, and drops a bunch of 18-inch wires on her desk. ‘Here’s your nanoseconds. Data can travel this far in a nanosecond.’ She’s happy with this and he gets a good report. Soon he’s a captain, but Grace is an admiral, and she says ‘find me a picosecond.’ He comes back three days later and drops a pile of pepper packets on her desk, and says that data can travel the length of a grain of pepper over a picosecond.’

I ask what would be a good talk for next year. Maddog thinks it should be about control. Not a bad idea.

I talk with a guy from Canonical about seeding and sustaining randomness in virtual machines.

Maddog story (note - I’ve forgotten country) ‘At Digital we were printed up 4,000 discs and we were handing them out at conferences. I went to the south pacific and had the last disc with me. The island got it’s internet from one line at the university, and it was slow. I felt a bit like god handing the disc to them, passing on wisdom. They were having problems getting a disc image before. So two years later I talk with the salesperson and ask if they’ve heard anything from the university. ‘No, they’re not using Linux.’ ‘Really?’ ‘Yeah, they haven’t talked to me in 2 years.’ So I go there with the salesman and at the meeting I ask who’s using Linux. All of them raise their hands. The salesman is just sitting there [Maddog gives a mock-shocked look]. I told the salesman ‘from now on, you have to go to them. They won’t come to you.”

Talk with Marc Merlin about Debian packaging and its many pitfalls.

A guy from HP mentions that WebOS has been cut. I’ve not checked Slashdot or the Register for almost a week, and already I’m missing out on fairly big events. It explains the morose talk earlier.

I ask the table if there’s any after-party plans, and Maddog mentions he’s got a single-malt scotch back in his hotel room.

Maddog, myself, and another couple stumble back to the hotel and find a table.

Dave Täht plays a software song for us on the piano. It should replace Stallman’s GNU song - it’s way more listenable.

The couple who came along with us breaks a glass, realize they’re drunk, and leave.

Find out couple paid whole tab, so we head up to Maddog’s hotel room.

Time unknown - 19th floor, Hyatt hotel

We drink scotch out on the balcony, and Maddog tells me more stories.

The scotch is delicious, really peaty. It cuts right through the wine-blah in my mouth and I’m loving it.

August 19th

8 AM PST - LinuxCon

My head is pounding from a red wine and scotch hangover. I’m drinking as much grapefruit juice as I can, as there’s no tomato juice this morning.

I talk with some girls from Oregon State University about Linux User Groups, artificial intelligence, and the state of teaching in computer science.

We come up with some really good ideas: “”, as well as ways to collect more data using

9 AM PST - LinuxCon

Jim Zemlin introduces Allison Randal - “The Fallacy of the ‘Zero-Sum’ Game”

People want to be part of something bigger than themselves

Many eyes means someone will let you know when you’re insane

She’s using very simple slides - one idea a slide. Very polished.

Marten Mickos - “The Future of Open Source in the Cloud”

The clapping is very loud. Too loud. This hangover is murder.

In FOSS, the F should stand for Fun

Giving people the freedom to leave is a form of lock-in (you can withdraw all your money bank account, but you don’t, because you know you can do it whenever you want.

10:30 AM PST - LinuxCon

Elena Zannoni does a talk on Linux tracing

Her mic feedback is killing me. I want to curl up into a ball right now.

I ended up writing a quick and dirty version of the LUG talk-o-matic

11:15 AM PST - LinuxCon

Go to Jake Edge’s IPv6 talk. Maddog sits in on it too - he’s fine. My head is still in pain.

IPv6 packet format way simpler

Have to put address in colons for URL address usage - http://[::1]:80

Need to update the IPv6 howto on TLDP

12 PM PST - LinuxCon

I figure a Philly cheese steak should fix the hangover. It does not.

I have just enough time to run over to the HMV and get a few records. The HST alone is 9 bucks - I don’t think I’ll buy any more records from here.

1 PM PST - LinuxCon

Go to talk about cgroups, backup speaker is nervous and awkward.

My head is still pounding, I think I’ll need to nip down to the pharmacy and get some aspirin.

A lot of awkward silence - contemplating just leaving this talk early.

I duck out early, and get some extra-strength aspirin. Sitting in a chair, waiting for head to explode, Jim Lacey finds me and brings me over to the cafe.

I meet Jim, Darrell, and Ross, and we discuss how the Linux Professional Institute can help kickstart the LUG renaissance. A newsletter is suggested amongst other things. Jim is going to talk to Maddog and get some more ideas.

2 PM PST - LinuxCon

Sanil Kumar talks about intelligent failure prediction

Failure = System is unable to provide the intended threshold result

Mobile battery failure, SMART drives - we have failure predictors all around us!

We need a unified IFP solution

Serious microphone feedback WTF - goes on for 40 seconds. Fortunately, the aspirin kicked in a little earlier, so my headache is mostly gone before the sonic assault.

I totally want to put Nagios on everything now

3 PM PST - LinuxCon

Lance Armstrong - OSU Open Source Lab

Holy crap, they do a lot of stuff

Jesus - that’s a really nice data center

They also host freenode and xiph

Ganeti Web Manager

I’ve finished the LUG talk suggest-o-matic. Will put it up as soon as possible.

4 PM PST - LinuxCon

Yes We Can: The Real Faces of Linux (Carla Schroeder)

It’s a riff-talk. Fortunately, it ends early enough.

5 P.M. PST - Steamworks Brewery

I run into Bruce Byfield in the hallway, and we decide that we’ll head to the brewery on foot.

On the way I double-check the Gallery Lounge for my water bottle. It is gone.

Me: ‘9 bucks for the HST on my records. I guess they are a luxury item, though.’ Bruce: ‘They’re a necessity!’ I make a mental note to talk records next time I meet up with Bruce.

We get into the brewery, and they’ve got a small room in the back. There is only one bar, and it is clear that this will be a clusterfuck.

I get a beer and talk with a few VanLUG members. One of them has enough web chops and he’s interested in tackling the mailing list problems I outlined - it definitely seems like the action items are getting addressed.

I say my goodbyes to the people I’ve met at the conference, and head out into the Vancouver night.