Dezember 9th, 2016 von buergermeister
FUDCon 2016, that was for me first of all a lot of work especially after the change of the venue in nearly last minute. Instead of ITC BarCamp happened this year at Norton University, what turned out not to be a good choice. A new hotel had to be found, not an easy task as on this side of the river are not many yet.
What I learned during my stay in South East Asia is, things need time here. So last minute changes bring you a lot of more work, what costs you time that you could spend in other tasks. So you need a lot of flexibility to handle that, a thing that drives a german sometimes mad. A special thanks goes here to Yekleang Dy, who helped me organizing all this small but important things like getting the people from the airport, the breakfast and lunch. I hope she helps me also for future events we planning in Cambodia.
Even the rooms of Norton University are better the exhibition area is it compared to ITC not, so there was much lesser exhibitors. Even the talks play a more vital role at the BarCamp, the exhibition seems to be from interest to. I remember last year the exhibition was not just bigger they had a stage with talks to. This and the the venue itself, which is located on the peninsula between Tonle Sap and Mekong. To get there you have to cross the Tonle bridge, what is especially in times of the rush hours horror. So that and the rain which was on sunday might kept a lot visitors away. But still the auditorium at the opening ceremony was filled (not comparable with the 3.500 seats at ITC but still 1.000 people). Next to Alex Davis Environment, Science and Technology Officer of the US Embassy in Cambodia, Dr. Seng Sopheap President of the National Institute of Post, Telecommuncation and ICT, Chan Sokheang Rector of Norton University, H.E. Chun Vat Director General of the Ministry of Posts and Telecommunication and our own Fedora Community Action and Impact Coordinator Brian Exelbierd gave a keynote.
Brians keynote nailed it down, there is no better way for an IT student as contributing to an Open Source project like Fedora to improve his CV, everybody can see what he has done because it is visible for all, his contributions are very visible for possible employer. Sadly we could not fill this large room again for the following talks, other events had that problem to, I had during FOSSASIA in that room a talk, which was also then just 10 people in that large room. But the rooms we had on the other floors was at least on Saturday good filled.
Especially Mohan Prakaschs workshop about Android Development with Fedora and also Jens Petersens talk about Functional Programming was good filled. In Jens talk was alone more then 25 students of PNC (Passerelles numériques Cambodge). A school who gives the young from underprivileged families a chance to become an IT professional.
Besides that there was time to speak about the situation in APAC and develop ideas how to improve Fedoras presence in the region. I had good conversations with Gerard Braad and Tommy about, what could help in China and with Jens about Japan. We also had the chance to deepen the contacts with the organizers of other Barcamp in the region, so was organizers from Thailand, Indonesia, the Philippines and Hong Kong around. Finding contributors in Cambodia is still very hard, the awareness for Open Source is low but presenting Fedora to an bigger audience in cooperation with an well know and good visited event, gave us the chance to make Fedora more known in Cambodia. Objective was to make Fedora more known in Cambodia and show that Fedora is leading the development in the FOSS world and that Fedoras contributors are experts in their area. To be sponsor of the BarCamp ASEAN, made Fedora very visible and also the big banners in the main hall did a good job. And it is still working, as the pictures go viral now.
Also giving the Barcamp volunteers FUDCon T-Shirts made us a lot of new friends. So there will be a brighter future for Fedora in Cambodia.