FOSS4G: Not the Company Line, But a Whole Climate of Opinion

by Brian Timoney

There comes a time around late morning of the second day of a vendor conference where it dawns on one that particular terminology, certain phrasings, are echoing from the keynote stage to the demonstration kiosks. The presumption of authentic communication misplaced, one despairs not of Orwellian doublespeak (let’s not flatter these people), but of the sales pitch masquerading as naturally volunteered information. Sometime in the run-up to the show, the in-house indoctrination orientation slide deck became mandatory reading, lovingly crafted by someone with an MBA, probably in Marketing and Communications.

At FOSS4G next month in Denver, one needn’t fear the company line–there won’t be one. Instead we’ll have a republic of voices: deeply knowledgeable voices that belong to real people not regurgitating pre-approved mantras. I’m looking forward to talking in person to so many folks whose stuff I’ve read and learned from online. Not only the bigwigs of geospatial blogging, but also more niche voices with a knack for passing on well-timed nuggets of specialized know-how.

Glancing over the RSVP list, here are a few of those voices who will be in Denver:

Dave Bouwman Martin Daly Peter Batty
James Fee Sophia Parafina Bill Dollins
Andrew Turner Jason Sanford Mikel Maron
Sean Gillies Dale Lutz Kate Chapman
Geoff Zeiss Frank Warmerdam Regina Obe
Tobin Bradley Randy George Christian Spanring
Paul Ramsey Allan Glen Mano Marks

To be sure, the above is a mere sampling: there will be other rooms, other voices. Join us for the conversation.


—Brian Timoney


* image courtesy of the genius blog Indexed