My experience in DebConf12 organization
Well, last March, Nicaragua was selected to host the 13th edition of the Debian Conference (DebConf12). For us, as Nicaraguan Community, it was very exciting. We celebrated this with friends the day we were elected. Eight months later I don’t know if we want to celebrate 🙂 and no, we do not regret it.
I have been organizing events since I joined the free software community in Nicaragua in 2007. At that time I remembered that someone told us “there is a event called FLISoL” and I told him “I don’t know what it is, but hey! let’s do it”. We didn’t know what to do at first, but in the end we learned how to organize FLISoL.
That’s how I began to organize events. After that we organized Software Freedom Day 2007, and FLISoL and SFD every year since 2007. In 2009 we decide to organize ECSL (Encuentro Centroamericano de Software Libre) in Estelí, Nicaragua. It was a big challenge back then, it was our first time making a four days event, looking for hotels, food and connectivity for 100 people.
I can remember when I met a person in Guatemala when I was at CGSOL 2008 and she was telling me about her visit to DebConf7 and I was thinking “oh, she was at DebConf7, it has to be cool to be at DC7 and knowing all the Debian people, someday I hope to attend DC, I don’t know when, but I hope I can make it”, and fast forward four years, I’m a member of the DebConf organization team 🙂
Yes, organizing DebConf it’s a real challenge, you have to deal with a lot of things, and with a lot of people. You need to learn the DebConf workflow, identify DebConf resources. Sometimes you get upset with people, you need a lot of time, coordinate with people in order to make a great job, explain things you are doing. This is about a team, so you need to work as a team.
For me, it’s a great experience doing it, it’s exciting to know that you are collaborating with a huge project like Debian and a good first collaboration if you don’t have much experience coding but want to help.
I can say that this is a thing that pushed me to start collaborating with the Debian project. Now I’m beginning to collaborate with the Spanish translations for the DPN and I hope to collaborate with more Spanish translations and maybe someday maintaining some package.
If you are one of those persons, asking yourself how to help a free software project, you can start helping in events organization, like DebConf 🙂
So, hope to see you next year in DebConf12 and hope to meet with people I knew in DebConf11 again.