We also ran out of coffee mugs, lanyards and t-shirts already during Saturday, so hopefully we can bring some more for next year, at least we had plenty of flyers, which we incidentally ended up with a well spirited in-booth competition with our FreeBSD peers on the highest flyer house.
Speaking of flyers, we also got some comments after the beer fest like
My favorite thing about #fosdem so far is the guy from @gentoo who came to the pre-party smoking cigars and replied to smalltalk by handing out fliers. I don't know about using Gentoo, but I know who to talk to if I need tips on opening my own strip club.
The Free Software Foundation Europe is running its campaign once again this year, and I quote:
In the Free Software society we exchange a lot of criticism. We write bug reports, tell others how they can improve the software, ask them for new features, and generally are not shy about criticising others. There is nothing wrong about that. It helps us to constantly improve. But sometimes we forget to show the hardworking people behind the software our appreciation. We should not underestimate the power of a simple "thank you" to motivate Free Software contributors in their important work for society. The 14th of February (a Sunday this year) is the ideal day to do that.
As part of this campaign the FSFE's FOSDEM stand allowed for sending postcards to projects that matters to users.
This year Gentoo received a post card supporting the future development, I love free software, ... but I love you more:
With a nicely thank you note hand-written on the back:
"Thank you for such a powerful and flexible system"
Next year we hope to receive even more postcards, but thank you very much for the one we received this year 🙂
On another note, Gentoo was interviewed during FOSDEM and the recording is available at HPR with Gentoo starting about 1:56:40.
Gentoo Linux was present at this year's Free and Open Source Developer European Meeting (FOSDEM). For those not familiar with FOSDEM it is a conference that consists of more than 5,000 developers and more than 600 presentations over a two-day span at the premises of the Université libre de Bruxelles. The presentations are both streamed directly and recorded making it available to browse the archive once published.
For the first time in many years Gentoo had a stand this year where we handed out buttons and stickers in addition to a LiveDVD.
The Gentoo Ten team created a hybrid amd64/x86 "FOSDEM 2016 Special Edition" release for our user's benefit (thanks likewhoa!), and 200 DVDs were printed of which 155 were already distributed to potential users by the end of day one. A posters on the stand succinctly listed all the packages included on the LiveDVD with some highlights of packages more familiar to some users, something that also highlights one of the benefits of rolling release distributions in that the versions are up to date with upstream releases.
If the LiveDVD is used on USB instead of the handed out DVDs it also offers the option of using persistence to store changes on the USB. It uses aufs to layer a read-write file system on top of a read-only squashfs compressed file system. This is great, because it allows you to make changes to the livedvd and have those changes appear on future reboots.
As mentioned in a blog post by dilfridge the stand also attracted attention due to a comment involving Gentoo Linux by Lennart Poettering in his keynote speech as a distribution that doesn't use systemd by default. This fit nicely with one of our banners at the stand; "Gentoo Linux | Works even without systemd | choice included".
There was a lot of positive feedback from various users and the stand functioned very nicely as a meeting place for the various people and the atmosphere was good throughout the conference.
As has become a tradition there was also a Gentoo dinner again this year amongst developers and users (thanks xaviermiller), a nice way to meet up and discuss everything in a relaxing setting.