After writing my previous post, I thought it would be better to writeup a single (longer) story that covered all days instead of just one (OK it got delayed a bit )
“The life of two FreeBSD Developers and a girlfriend traveling towards BSDCan”
BSDCan is one of the biggest BSD meetings / events in the year, many developers and contributors visit this event to share thoughts and express their opinions about whatever comes to mind.
The developers are: Ed Schouten, Remko Lodder and the girlfriend is Denise (my girlfriend)
On the 13th of may 2008, it was that time. We were going to fly with the three of us to Canada to visit the FreeBSD Developers Summit (which was planned just before the official conference) and the BSDCan Conference. Both Ed and my employer (Snow BV) asked us whether we wanted to participated in this conference and ofcourse we wanted to do so. For Ed this has a positive input on his final internship at our company, and for me it’s an opportunity to guide Ed along the path of FreeBSD, and to finally meet several people that I never met before (because they never visit Europe for example).
Thanks a lot for facilitating us Snow! We greatly appreciated it and we had a great conference!
Snow thought it was a great idea to let Ed travel to Canada to present his upcoming mpsafetty work to the developer crowd. I was also asked by the FreeBSD developers and by Snow to travel towards Canada, to guide Ed and to meet my fellow developers, some of which I had never seen before, Denise also wanted to travel along and Snow arranged everything so that we could actually go with the three of us…
The travel started very early, Denise and I needed to fetch the plane at 0715, to fly through London Heathrow towards Ottawa Airport. Ed had a flight later, and joined us at Heathrow airport before we left to Canada. We ate a bit, spotted some fellow FreeBSD members (Robert Watson, Doug Rabson and Poul-Henning Kamp), they were going to have the same plane as us (poor them ).
The flight towards canada was a line-flight, not entirely full, so we had space near the emergency exits, and we also had a couch for the three of us. Plenty of space! Robert Watson had a entire couch for himself, which he used to workout some details (on his laptop).. Denise, Ed and I listened to music, watched a movie (in our personal entertainment system onboard of the plane) and talked a lot.
After arriving in Canada, we started the procedure to adopt to the time, in the Netherlands it was already late in the evening, while it was just noon in Canada. Very interesting to see if you never experienced it before.. We also had great fun at immigrations, we were seperated, and Denise got asked why she was traveling to canada etc. She said she visited the BSDCan event to meet other FreeBSD people, luckily for her they didn’t ask much beyond that, because simply she doesn’t now . Robert, Doug and Poul-Henning where lucky to get picked up by Dan Langille (The BSDCan organiser); and we took the bus towards the university, a nice ride, with special lanes for the busses (dutch government, are you listening!?).
At the university we checked in, and put out all our stuff, and tried to find the other nerds that were also there. We found them at the Royal Oak (A cafe nearby), where we ate, drank and after a while returned to the residence to almost instantly fall asleep.
Ed and I woke up in the middle of the night, myself at 0400AM (canada time) and Ed at 0500AM, strange time to wake up, but it was already 10/11am in the Netherlands. That didn’t make us feel that well yet , the breakfast was served for the three of us.
Ed and I visited the two day FreeBSD Developers summit, a meeting of FreeBSD Developers and invited guests, while Denise traveled through Ottawa to see what was happening there. On the first day, Ed gave a talk about his project, and funnily enough, no resistance popped up. He even got support from various people that he should proceed, and finish this up and all. Very well presented and the results were terrific.
Other talks that day: GreenBSD (energy reducing development for FreeBSD), finstall, kernel booting through http, FreeBSD Embedded status update, Network Stack BoF, Bugbusting/Gnats BoF, Profiling and Debugging tools, release packaging tools, VImage & Virtualization BoF.
A productive first day, with very interesting topics. Later that day Denise and I headed out for dinner, while Ed joined the community and had dinner with them. Denise and I got accompanied by Colin Percival (FreeBSD’s Security Officer), we walked to the Royal Oak, had some good talks with the three of us and where we got later joined by Ed. We walked around a bit and had a drink here and there, and again headed to bed early, we needed to be fit for the second developers day.
The second day was again covered by multiple interesting talks:
Transparant TCP interception, NFS Lock manager, FreeBSD Foundation Update, What’s happening in the world of ports and portsmgr, TCP SMP Scalability en Revising Revision Control (about the big move from CVS to SVN, which happened in the timeframe between Canada and now). Ed and I also visited the syscons/input BoF, where we could speak natively, accompanied by Philip Paeps and Marcel Moolenaar. We also saw a practical example of Coverity, and we finally concluded the day with Denise and all developers in the Indian restaurant nearby the residence. One should ask Ed for his Cowboy Act, the people from Isilon can surely remember that part .
The third day was the real opening of BSDCan itself, again multiple talks where given by developers and interested people in the BSD community. Ed and I spoke with an Apple developer about llvm, a BSD licensed C(++) compiler. Very interesting talk with the three of us. I also took part in the BSDA certification (which I (ofcourse) got).
In the evening the three of us (Ed, Denise and I) went to the Hardrock cafe, where we ate a nice big american burger, needed to show our ID’s while ordering beer (ehm I have a 5 year old kid…).
The fourth day we spend visiting the city a bit. We didn’t had the regular breakfast but had a sneakpeak at Cora’s. Here one should eat when he is in Ottawa. Very nice (and MUCH) food! After that we phoned home and visited the city with an amphibious bus, which drove us through the city. Very good way to see a lot of the city in one go. We also visited the river a bit (hey the bus could float, lets use that). After that we returned to the university and where just in time to see the closing ceremony. A funny rehash of what all happened during BSDCan, an auction for the homeless people near the university (Where a core-signed cap was worth 260dollars! and a few shirts 100+ dollars). Again we concluded the day with the three of us (Denise needed to spend time with us after being alone for much of the period) which we did at an Italian restaurant. Good food again!
The fifth day was our final day in Canada. We packed our suitcases, got hold of Brad Davis and his friend, who hold a table in Cora’s for us, where we again had (HUGE) breakfast. After that we walked around a bit in the city, saw some places we didn’t see the day before, and returned to the residence to pickup our stuff, and returned to the airport, with Peter Wemm and Doug Rabson near us.
We had a great flight back with a couple of developers, Bjoern Zeeb made some evil pictures of the crowd, try to find them
to conclude: YOU MUST BE AT BSDCAN NEXT YEAR MMKAY?