BarCamp Chicago 2008: Afterword

BarCamp Chicago wrapped up nicely yesterday with a number of talks. There was a talk about Python (I still don’t get why folks aren’t using Ruby, but that’s just me), an open source hardware project demo, a talk on wikis, a talk on couchdb – very nice indeed.

The open source hardware project is called Arduino and is available prebuilt for a minimal price (about US$30 to US$40) – though you could build it yourself if you like (the diagrams are online and available to all). An accelerometer was attached to the Arduino device (which was attached to the computer via USB) and the outputs printed out on the console.

The wiki talk covered what it took to install a wiki and the speaker’s experience with wikis (and MediaWiki in particular).

The couchdb talk discussed couchdb (which was particularly pertinent, because it runs using Erlang, discussed earlier). Couchdb is a database which is based on documents and uses RDF for everything, and which can be spread out among a set of computers quite easily. Note that it is not relational, and it is not object-oriented either.

And of course, what is BarCamp Chicago without Ron May?

BarCamp Chicago 2008: In Progress

Earlier there was a discussion on how to get open source communities started and active. This was an interesting discussion with lots of audience participation.

Then there was a talk about open source and intellectual property law (including copyright mainly, as well as patents – almost no talk about trademarks). There was talk about software licensing and commercialization of software.

In progress is a delightful talk about user interface design (particularly web design).

There’s lots of soda, pizza, sharing, discussion, and so forth.

More to come. Pictures (phone pictures – sigh) to come.

BarCamp Chicago

I’ll be at BarCamp Chicago this weekend; why not join us there? I’ll be speaking about GNU Screen on Saturday.

I plan to post entries directly from BarCamp; we’ll see how it goes. Of course, my laptop is a tad more advanced than last time – now it’s a Pentium III Compaq Armada E500 with FreeBSD 6.3 loaded (and a complete graphical KDE environment).

Looking forward to seeing you there!

Do you need a reminder? Send a message to HitMeLater at the address (such as and they’ll send your message back to you. The address also works: will resend on the next wednesday after today.