[Linux-aus] Choosing the LCA '07 host city

Jeff Waugh jdub at perkypants.org
Fri Dec 16 23:21:06 UTC 2005

<quote who="Glen Turner">

> Been to a few, organised one.  Am I alone in finding this unstructured
> beauty contest format particularly unhelpful?

It's a bit unclear, particularly when we have to do it virtually. :-) A pair
of knuckledusters and a butcher's cleaver would be *much* quicker.

>  - The organisational abilities of the organisers.
>  - The commitment of the initial organiser team, how many
>    will make it to the end?  Enough for the roles: lead,
>    treasurer, sponorship sales, pr, site arrangements,
>    programme, volunteer wrangler?

So we published the team member's names in the Sydney pitch. I can speak for
myself and refer to the reputations of the core team members: I'm a previous
linux.conf.au organiser (in fact, one of the 2001 team, which defined LCA as
we know it today) and participant in a number of organisational roles in
FOSS projects and boards. We also have previous linux.conf.au helpers, and
others you'll know from FOSS projects and organisations of many different
shapes and sizes. Our core team is fully committed for the lifecycle of the
event, and we have assigned roles (mostly along the lines you've suggested
above) according to our interests and abilities.

>  - The management of risk. There's no revenue, but significant
>    incurred expense, before the first registrations and the
>    first sponsorship cheques (which sponsors like to send in
>    too late to be useful for risk mitigation).
>    Things like free presentation space and early sponsorship
>    cash really help to minimise the risk.

One of the 'innovations' that we outlined in our pitch was the separation of
necessary and discretionary items on our budget, specifically to manage the
risk that Linux Australia takes when putting on the conference. We have also
had verbal support from various potential sponsors, so we should be able to
bring on early sponsorship pretty easily - we are committed to following up
potential sponsors before the end of the financial year, to benefit from tax
opportunities. :-)

>  - Sanity of arrangements. Are the conference facilities
>    close to each other, walking distance to accomodation,
>    relatively wlan and additional power friendly, easy
>    to navigate, allow some disabled access, etc, etc?

We outlined some of this in our pitch. The venue is proven - we held LCA2001
at the same venue, though we've added a much larger theatre to the mix, to
account for the growth of the conference.

> And the pitch format ("yes, we are superior organisers, trust us") just
> isn't the right device.

There was a lot of detail in our pitch, demonstrating our preparedness and
understanding of the problem space, *including* our forward-looking approach
to growing the conference in a valuable way.

> LCA also has some structural issues.  The beauty contest format means that
> a bid which tries to address some of these issues is at a big
> disadvantage. That's not good for the long run.

Which structural issues would you like us to address (that we didn't in our
pitch), such that satisfactory answers will secure your support for Sydney
2007? :-)

Game on!

- Jeff

linux.conf.au 2006: Dunedin, New Zealand               http://linux.conf.au/
     "Everyone's a little queer, why can't she be a little straight?" -
                           Weezer, Pink Triangle

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