More != better

Submitted by gwolf on Fri, 06/02/2006 - 18:38
This is the time of year when most Free Software-related conferences in Mexico have their calls for papers. /lists.consol.org.mx/pipermail/consol/2006-May/006443.html">send my proposal by mail, and I do hope it gets in the official program - For sentimental reasons more than anything else ;-) CONSOL is, after all, still my baby!). Yesterday I had to come up with something, as CICOL's deadline was also hanging upon me. Now my attention has been brought towards FSL, for which I still have almost one month to think. And, of course, although at other times of year (but, of course, still clashing with other conferences) we will not have one, but three instances of GULEV this year.. WTF? Mexico's Free Software community is a small and not too productive one, as most communities in our (culturally defined) continent, Latin America. And yes, conferences are quite fun, it's always nice to go to a nice place and meet your friends. But we must not forget the real motivation for them all: The academic program. We currently have four conferences that try to reach to the same audience (yes, in different places of the country, but all of them with a national scope). And if you compare the list of proposed talks (visible currently for three of them), you will see there is no real difference between the set of talks on them. Please explain me, what kind of incentive does this give to anybody to attend? Just to hang out with the friends, entering a talk here and there? I ended up submitting the same talks for both CONSOL and CICOL, as running Debconf didn't leave me time to prepare or think over anything - That's not what I like to do, and I hope I can be a bit more creative with the topics for FSL. There is no published criteria yet on what will be the focus for (each of the) GULEV, so I'm not committing yet to them. And yes, being a very active Free Software promoter in my country, I try to be present everywhere - but of course, everything has a limit. I will most probably not skip CONSOL (as it is on the city I live, and it is the one I am most sentimentally attached to) or CICOL (as it is just 1hr south from here)... But I'm still uncertain if I'll be at FSL or any of the GULEVs. Back on my initial questioning, anyway: Do we need four perfectly equivalent conferences in this country? Besides ego clashes, wouldn't we be best served if we had only one or two big conferences a year?
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Mahomedalid Pacheco's picture

Re: More != better

"Besides ego clashes". Creo que sería lo mas difícil de todo el asunto. Y si, estaría chingón que fuera un solo simposium. Lo bueno de tener 4 es que para las personas que no podemos viajar demasiado lejos, el tener el FSL en Jalisco, el CONSOL en el DF y el GULEV en Veracruz, nos da opciones de tiempo y lugar.
garaged's picture

Re: More != better

Yo tambien coincido con la opinion anterior. If USA has quite a lot of meetings, why in the hell mexico can't ? :)
Geronimo's picture

Re: More != better

En lo que yo no concuerdo es en los tiempos, los 3 (consol, fsl y gulev) son en 2 meses WTF!!!!
izaac's picture

Re: More != better

Estoy contigo en que tener diferentes congresos con platicas y talleres equivalentes es una pérdida de tiempo, sólo si es en la misma zona. Pienso que sería un éxito si estuvieran algo alejados, por ejemplo las del GULEV bien podrían llevarse mas al norte como a Tijuana o Hermosillo y así tendría mas sentido exponer los mismos temas. Lo digo porque de por si uds. que viven al sur se quejan de que el movimiento del software libre es flojo imaginen la frustración de ver cómo por aca al norte andamos mucho peor. Pero en fin, es una opinión.
Maria Vang's picture

Re: More != better

I don't agree quite with you. Yes, having 4 absolutely equivalent conferences is not the best to do and it is at some extent scattering of efford but I doubt they are really exactly the same. We have almost the same case here in my country. Well, our conferences are only 3 but personally I regret that I can't attend to all of them though the talks are similar here too. It is just that on each conference we have different people with their own set of views - and that is more than enough to keep all of the conferences instead of having just one with the same people. At least that is what I think.