Thanks to LinuxFest Northwest for a great conference this weekend. I really enjoyed a conference schedule with good breaks built in.

There was at least 90 minutes between presentation starts. Presentations were allotted up to 40 minutes, but there was room for those of us who went over. Even when someone went long there was time before the next presentation.

That was fantastic. It left time to squeeze in some housework and yard work. It left leisurly amounts of time for food and bathroom breaks. It also gave me time to think about the presentations, to review my notes and to investigate some of the ideas from the presentations.

It even left time for me to make updates to my own presentations during the day :).

I also used the time between presentations to explore the social event space. LFNW used Wonder, which appears to be the smoother, commercial version of the Free Software WorkAdventure that I’ve used at a few other conferences. Once I figured out all the JavaScript domains it wanted Wonder worked pretty well. It made for a nice hallway track experience.

There were a couple times when I had to choose one presentation over another for a particular block. I could have gone and watched the other presentation during a break. Heck, if I really, really needed consistent engagement I could have watched presentations from last year or pulled things up on PeerTube.

I did use the break time to listen to some podcasts. I also tried to hop into the Destination Linux live stream on Sunday, but that didn’t quite work out. They’ve been announcing LFNW and other conferences at the end of the show.

It felt nice to not be so hurried. Sure, at any conference ( virtual or in person ) we can choose to take a break at any time. Still, less rushed was nice. This year’s LFNW experience will get me to re-think how I attend conferences.

None of this is meant as a crtique of other conferences or how they run their schedules. It’s also not me telling anyone how to run a conference. It’s just me expressing how well the LFNW schedule worked for me this particular weekend. It was just what I needed, my heartfelt thanks for a fantastic experience.

The LFNW schedule links to other activities going on at the same time on the presentation pages.

For instance, if you look at the page for my Fediverse talk, you can see that there were talks about Open-Source hardware monitoring and kernelspace with BPF at the same time. And if you look at the page for my jq talk, you can see Gaming with Robots and a retrospective on a year of AlmaLinux were simultaneously running.

I love this feature and wish every conference schedule had it! It’s especially helpful for in person conferences.

I do look forward to returning to an in person LFNW next year. I had a nice train trip to/from LFNW with some friends planned for 2020. I hope we get to finally have the trip and enjoy some tea next year.

Finally, thanks to LFNW for the help they’ve given to SeaGL over the years. We’ve appreciated the boost and love the opportunity to also participate in LFNW. It’s great to have events cooperating like that.

Oh, and the relaxed schedule left me time to create most of the ideas for this blog entry during the day today :).