As many of you know I had the privilege of attending OSCON 2009 last week. I just want to say, for the record, that it was easily the best conference I have ever been to. From the presentations, to the speakers to the BoFs, the whole thing was well organized, well executed and totally worth the 3,200 clicks I put on my motorcycle to get there. :-)
One of the things I got by going was the sense of community and the sense of contribution. Here were people from all walks of technology, from people just starting out to veterans of 20+ years, from database to Web 2.0 to Gov 2.0 to algorithm fanatics to social media creators all gathered to talk about their passion for creating, improving, using and championing free software. I am thrilled to do my part as a contributing member of these communities and am grateful for the opportunity.
The main takeaway though for me was the sense of leadership. The open source community is chock-full of leaders. People who dare to see and meet the call of something bigger than themselves and who are willing to stand for the result while it is only a possibility and who will act to make it real.
It's completely unreasonable to get an idea, collaborate with people all over the world in your spare time for months or years at a time, create world class software and then give it away for free to anyone who wants it, with no strings attached. And, that's exactly what is happening 24 hours a day 365 days of the year, all over the world.
It's completely unreasonable.
And it's so much fun.
Thanks OSCON for the excellent week. See you in 2010.
Ps: see some of the OSCON action by going to the OSCON site and viewing their videos of some of the talks.