[Linux-aus] LCA2014 update

Glen Turner gdt at gdt.id.au
Thu Aug 30 01:09:16 EST 2012

My 2c

A bid is not the only way for Linux Australia to determine that a team
is capable of running a conference. But a bid is a highly effective way
of discouraging people with an interest in running a LCA.

Miniconfs add significant value to LCA. They can be low cost to run, if
that is what the organisers decide.

Historically LCA has traded organising team effort for costs. For
example, stuffing bags themselves, and doing a lot of the venue and
conference organisation. You can compare that with AUUG, which paid for
a conference centre and professional organisers. It is necessary to be
strategic about what you do in-house and what you outsource, but even if
the conference organisation is kept in-house there is a significant
amount of activity which can be outsourced.

Linux Australia's non-LCA activities are funded from LCA profit. This in
turn means that organising teams are have a limited ability to trade
cost versus effort. Linux Australia needs to find other sources of
income for its non-LCA activities.

Some activities are pointless. A good example here is conference bags.
Offer vendors a table, they'll think it is better value and the
organisers won't have to source and pack bags.

LCA is too small. It is currently too large for a university, whilst
being too small to be economic for a convention centre. Equivalent
conferences have bridged this gap, LCA has not. There seems to be a
worry about having a "small" feel, but that's got a lot more to do with
the approachability of a conference rather than its actual size.

Maybe FISL should be the future model, rather than being more like Linux
Plumbers Conference.

Some aspects are done really well every year thanks to the commitment of
a few people. Those people are not sufficiently thanked. In fact, they
are typically flamed for some minor shortcoming, which causes deep
disillusionment over time. I'm not thinking of any one aspect here, as I
can think of at least three aspects and five people.

Care and feeding of sponsors isn't done well. Returning sponsorships
says more about the sponsors than it does about LCA's care of them.

Fix the sexism problem. Practically, because it is the prime risk to
access to university venues; philosophically, because it isn't free
software if using it carries a moral cost.

"The community" is a pain in the arse. If you are writing more than two
e-mails about one topic which you are not doing anything else to
advance, then you are part of the problem.

I hardly bother with LUG mailing lists anymore because of the resulting
angst. I certainly stay away from this sort of discussion, so I'll crawl
back into my cave now.

Glen Turner   www.gdt.id.au/~gdt

More information about the linux-aus mailing list