First, allow me to mention that I like FSCONS. I’ve been there several years, I’ve spoken there every year I’ve been there and I know and like a bunch of the persons in the team putting it together. Good stuff!
I wasn’t supposed to do any talk at FSCONS this year, and I did feel a little empty and lost because of it.
… then an empty slot appeared, a question was asked, a subject was suggested and suddenly I ended up having agreed to do a talk and the void has been filled again. I’m glad. I hope someone else will be too and I will try to excite the audience with a talk titled “SPDY: An experimental protocol for a faster web” or something like that. It will have to do for now. It is currently planned to take place at 17:15 on Saturday 12th of November.
My thinking is to explain SPDY in detail, explain the reasoning behind it, the problems that have lead up to its creation and I’ll try to shed the lights on the alternatives and make some guesses what I think the future will hold in terms of web transports and what we will NOT see… I might even manage to acquire further insights of this from my ventures into libspdy.
If you have any related thoughts or questions, feel free to ask me ahead of time and I might be able to adjust my talk for it.
On November 8th 2011, foss-sthlm has the honors of welcoming Richard M Stallman to Stockholm and we invite you all to come and listen to what he has to say. RMS, as he is commonly known, is of course the founding father of both GNU and FSF and he has served his role of non-compromising believer in and the torch-bearer of the Free Software movement ever since he started it.
Date: November 8 Time: 18:00 Where: Aula Magna at Stockholm University
To get to enjoy this talk, and to be able to perhaps ask a question of your own, you must register and book your seat. You do this by going to the foss-sthlm nov2011 web page and reading the instructions.
We have this required booking concept for this only to make sure that we don’t overbook the room. Please make sure that you “return” tickets that you won’t use. Please help us pull this event through in an excellent manner.
This event is made possible thanks to our sponsors South Pole AB and DSV. We arrange this in cooperation with the great FSCONS team.
Update: we switched to a much bigger place!
On Sunday morning during FSCONS 2010, in the room “Torg 4 South” I did a 30 minute talk about a few future, potentially coming network protocols for transport. A quick look at the current state, some problems of today and 4 different technologies that have been and are being developed to solve the problem.
I got a fair amount of questions and several persons approached me afterwards to make sure they got a copy of my slides.
The video recording is hopefully going to be made available later on, but until then you can read the slides below and imagine my Swedish accent talking about these matters!
[continued from FSCONS 2010 day 1]
With the previous night’s social event ending fairly late and involving a fair amount of good beers, it was nice to be able to sleep in a bit and have one of those great hotel breakfasts in a slow and relaxed manner.
I then checked out from the hotel and walked over to the venue, this time not as mislead by google maps’ directions as I was yesterday.
The economics of open innovation and FOSS. was the first session I attended and the talker Karthik Jayaraman did a good job of explaining and showing how things can happen fast and why and he did some interesting predictions of the future.
I followed Kathik’s talk in the same room with my 30 minute session Future transports in which I discussed and explained a bit about transport protocols today and what might come tomorrow.
Glyn Moody is a bit of a celebrity (he has for example written several books) and you can tell he’s done this before. He’s an excellent speaker and as he’s a native English person he has a bit of an edge compared to most speakers at this conference. Mr Moody got the biggest room at FSCONS filled up to the last available chair and there were still a bunch who had to sit on the floor.
Glyn talked about Ethical Monopolies, the history of patents and copyright and how they have changed and how they today no longer are even close to having the purposes they were created for.
He advocates that we stop talking about “Intellectual Properties” but instead refer to them as “Intellectual government-granted monopolies” as that is a much better use of words when these subjects are brought up. The ordinary person thinks people should be able to keep properties, but would in many cases object to (more) monopolies.
The last session I got to enjoy this year was Mikael von Knorring’s “Who are the free users” which did present a good view of things but I wasn’t very focused during the talk so I’ll refrain from judging it in any direction.
I took a last stroll over to the cafeteria area where I found some friends, said hello and good bye and then I took off towards the train station and my 3+ hours train ride back to Stockholm on the other coast of Sweden. (It could be noted that I left early, there were at least two session slots that I missed.)
My head is packed with impressions. I met lots of great people and friends, both old and many new ones. We had awesome discussions and I hope at least some of the ideas that were brought up will be turned into reality. I will post more about those here if/when they happen.
The future for Free Software (in the Nordic region) is bright!
At FSCONS 2010 I had the pleasure to do a talk about how to make your client-side networking applications really scale when upping the number of simultaneous connections. Including some details that libcurl will support you all the way!
My talk was named “Scalable application layer transfers” and the slides from it is available online. See below. Hopefully the video recording of it will appear later and I’ll post a follow-up then. A little extra bonus material as background would be my poll vs select vs event-based article.
As I mentioned in a previous post, the room was shock full when I started preparing my equipment for the talk since the session before me was a keynote, but by the time I actually starter presenting there were only the limited set of hardcore geeks left.
In the FSCONS program there were several talks over the weekend about women in FOSS and so on, while I on the other hand certainly only contributed to enforcing the stereotypes by being white, male, middle-aged, very techy and I delivered my two speeches for audiences in which I believe not a single woman attended. Whether I am part of the problem or the solution we can discuss in a separate post later on…
07:02: The alarm of my mobile never rang, because I was already up. I got to play with my two kids a while before the taxi arrived to pick me up at 07:30.
The X2000 train from Stockholm to Göteborg took off exactly on schedule and we were off. I learned that the on-board Internet service wasn’t possible to sign on to with Chrome but I had to fire up my good old Firefox for it. Going with first class X2000 offer free Internet all the way, and free coffee. Two of my favorite frees.
The train arrived only 10 minutes late in Gothenburg. I took a taxi over to my hotel, checked in, put my smaller laptop in my backpack and walked over to the FSCONS venue.
After having had lunch and caught up with some friends, I sat down in the big audience listening to the presentation about the Inhana project, by Kyrah. Interactive storytelling and about helping female artists in Syria to play/work with technology in the form av Arduino boards.
Kyrah had the room full. Not that many remained when I entered the stage after her and did my talk on scalable application layer transfers.
I followed up with a cup of coffee after some private discussions on SCTP and how to do fast transfers in the Tor project and then I headed towards the talk about data structures in the Linux kernel by Allesandro Rubini.
Mr Rubini is a long-time involved Linux kernel hacker (and well known co-author of the Linux Device Drivers bible) and in a very casual and effective style he taught us how we can use regular Linux code for lists and trees in a GPL licensed project and how the clever container_of macro works. To me, its biggest drawback is that it relies on a gcc-specific feature: typeof(), but otherwise it is a beautiful craftsmanship.
Allesandro brought down the biggest spontaneous applause when he responded to someone’s question “but couldn’t you also do this using templates in C++?” by suitably and appropriately bashing C++…
Anders Arnholm followed along in the embedded track and he talked about using Linux in the automotive world and I think many of us thought the best part of his talk was the numbers and comparisons he had when trying different flash file systems to increase boot performance and really cut down startup time to a minimum. The initial kernel startup time was 6 something seconds when using JFFS2 and they managed to get down to below 200 milliseconds with the use of the AXFS (Advanced XIP Filesystem, where XIP is short for execute in place).
… after Anders’ talk I followed the crowds, got a seat in a bus and we were transported over to the social event. I mentioned a little bit about that in my previous post, the award for me.
My FSCONS 2010 day 2 entry will be posted within shortly.
The formal handing over of the prize was done during the social event at FSCONS 2010, with hundreds of free software hackers attending and a lot joy. Bjarni was also immediately invited to participate in the NFSA jury for next year, in an attempt to start a tradition of getting former winners on the jury.
I’m happy to say that I served in the jury for the award this year. We were a bunch of Nordic free software enthusiasts in there, involving several previous winners. The winner this year, Bjarni Rúnar, was selected by us having a nomination process in which we received I believe 11 names and then a subsequent voting within the jury.
I did the press release draft and Karsten from FSFE polished it into something much better. I think that will go out early this week and I am now even mentioned as press contact for Sweden about the award. The FSFE posted their announcement, including my last name wrongly spelled…
The social event then went on with lots of free software talks with cool people from the entire Nordic region, and I certainly met a whole bunch of friendly hackers I didn’t know before. It was also great fun to run into Giuseppe, the current wget maintainer.
(The picture might just be a fake.)
I was asked what the Nordic Free Software Award that I received last year meant to me. This was my response that I now repost here for the public to see:
To me, the NFSA is a recognition from my own kind. A really big thumbs-up from within my own team. From fellow hackers who know.
In a world where we spend lots and lots of time alone in front of screens during long dark hours, where most of what you do is just silently pushed into source code repositories or consumed by eager downloaders distributed all over the world, getting that kind of positivism is invaluable.
I found it to not only be a very big ego boost, but it also really ignited my desire to do more, to reach further and to prove that my receiving of the award is the beginning and not the end of what I am set to do in our free software world. In my particular case it was a primary factor behind the start of the Foss-sthlm network that I co-started not long after I got the award. I’ve pushed foss-sthlm forwards during this year with several meetings with a hundred or more attendees.
Getting weird looks from outsiders or a thank you from the occasional user is fun, but getting an award from people who actually know what you might have done and what it takes to do it, is priceless.
I’m perfectly aware that I am the super-nerd. I’m not the social guy. I’m not the person who unite crowds or inspire teams to create miracles. I’m a software developer and I design and create code. Lots of it. I debate technical details, protocols and choices on mailing lists. Lots of them. I share as much as possible of all that of course and I’m thrilled that what I do is considered this good and is appreciated to this extent.
Everyone doing volunteer work wants to get recognition for their efforts. I got it. Thank you!
During the social event at FSCONS 2010 when we announced the winner of this year and handed him his prizes, I was also given the prize I never received last year because I wasn’t around at the actual award ceremony then. And of course, these guys love puns so…
From the left: a box with rocks (for my work on Rockbox), a transformer toy (I don’t quite recall the reason for that) and curlers (for my work on curl). Click on the image to see it in full resolution, it is taken with my crappy mobile camera.
Haxx is dedicated and committed to work with open source as much as possible, and we love and praise the virtues of free and open source software.
We have teamed up with a bunch of friends here in Sweden that share a lot of our mindset and spirit, and together we’ve created Fossgruppen, The Foss Group, and as an umbrella organization the group is all about making it easier for companies and people in Sweden and the world to find open source professionals. We offer open source consultants, foss-related training/courses and more.
If you’re looking for Open Source professionals in Sweden, no other company or association can compete with the amount of experience and core hacker geekness that Fossgruppen possesses. Together we also have contributors and maintainers of a range of foss projects. If you have any insights at all into foss in Sweden, there is no doubt that you will recognize more than one name in our group.
Fossgruppen currently consists of this team of elite guys:
- Daniel Stenberg
- Björn Stenberg
- Simon Josefsson
- Henrik Sandklef
- Jonas Öberg
- Johan Thelin
- Henrik Nordström
- Andreas Nilsson
- Jeremiah Foster
- Mathias Klang
- Peter Stuge
- Marcus Rejås
The web site is basic so far, and we don’t really have a shiny logo to show off with yet but I’m confident we will sort all that out over time!