[OSGeo-Discuss] FOSS4G 2013 Nottingham Update

Fawcett, David (MNIT) David.Fawcett at state.mn.us
Mon May 13 06:51:48 PDT 2013

I haven't been following this thread from the beginning, but as Program Chair of FOSS4G NA 2013, I just want to add to what Peter said.

My experience has been that it is a tough job to put together a program that appears both high-quality and balanced to everyone. Workshops are even more difficult to select and balance due to the limited number of slots.

In doing all of the work as a volunteer on personal time, the final product is unfortunately not the same as it would have been if I was doing this full time.  There would definitely be better communication, marketing, and some additional polish.  This is the reality of a conference organized by a limited number of volunteers with finite resources.


From: discuss-bounces at lists.osgeo.org [mailto:discuss-bounces at lists.osgeo.org] On Behalf Of Peter Batty
Sent: Friday, May 10, 2013 10:32 AM
To: Jeroen Ticheler
Cc: osgeo-discuss
Subject: Re: [OSGeo-Discuss] FOSS4G 2013 Nottingham Update

Hi all,

As a previous FOSS4G chair I would just appeal to everyone to go easy on the organizing team. I was not involved in the selection process this time but I do know there was a high number of workshops that were submitted, so unfortunately half the submitters are going to be disappointed and think that the committee made the wrong the choice.

Barry also stated that he wasn't involved in workshop selection, so you really shouldn't all be reading lots into his side comment that the workshops present good value - my interpretation is that was just a general comment that was Barry's opinion and nothing to do with selection criteria.

Also the reality is that there are so many submissions that you can't give specific reasons to everyone who was rejected why they didn't make it - this would hugely increase the already large amount of time that all these volunteers are putting into creating a FOSS4G event, and make a difficult process even more difficult.

Just a few thoughts as a previous organizer :)


On Fri, May 10, 2013 at 2:31 AM, Jeroen Ticheler <jeroen.ticheler at geocat.net<mailto:jeroen.ticheler at geocat.net>> wrote:
I concur with Markus.
I was also surprised to see none of our GeoNetwork related workshops represented although they were always well received at previous conferences. It would have been nice if we'd had feedback on the reasoning behind that. Considering about half the national INSPIRE geospatial catalogs in Europe run on the product I consider it a relevant OSGeo product. Reading the thread, I note we should also put up a page with high GeoNetwork workshop fees instead of always providing them for free at FOSS4G conferences. I may actually start to consider that ;-)

On 10 mei 2013, at 10:12, Markus Neteler <neteler at osgeo.org<mailto:neteler at osgeo.org>> wrote:

> On 5/10/13, Barry Rowlingson <b.rowlingson at lancaster.ac.uk<mailto:b.rowlingson at lancaster.ac.uk>> wrote:
>> On Fri, May 10, 2013 at 7:27 AM, andrea antonello
>> <andrea.antonello at gmail.com<mailto:andrea.antonello at gmail.com>> wrote:
>>> Also I would have another wish. Is there a way to understand how the
>>> workshops were chosen.
>>> I see important projects missing, whereas several have kind of
>>> "double" or even "triple" workshops.
> Yes, surprising also for me.
>>> Given the few available slots, I would have expected more
>>> differentiation.
>>> Would be really keen to understand the process, if there is a simple
>>> way to do so.
>> The workshop selection process was handed to our workshop subcommittee
>> - I've asked them to respond to these issues here on the mailing list
>> and personally to you two if that's necessary.
>> The balance looks quite good to me, where there is duplication it
>> seems to be different aspects of the same project - Postgis Intro and
>> Postgis 3d have different audiences, for example. Its possible that
>> other projects weren't represented in the proposals which would
>> explain their absence.
> While I submitted an advanced GRASS GIS 7 workshop, I didn't even
> receive a 'your proposal was not considered' notification.
> A bit sad for a cofounder of OSGeo and participant of the first ever
> FOSS4G Conf 2004 in Bangkok.
>> There are a few workshops from OpenGeo, but if
>> you go to their website and see how much they charge for commercial
>> training, you might see this as us giving people the opportunity to
>> get some great training cheaply from some great trainers.
> ... well, not a convincing argument.
>> Anyway, our Workshop Team will address these issues later.
> Better sooner :)
> Markus
> (FOSS4G trainer since 1996)
>> Barry
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