"May I help you?" - Conference Slides From POSSCON


Paw Prints: Writings of the maddog

May 08, 2011 GMT
Jon maddog Hall


In March I attended POSSCON in Columbia, South Carolina for the second time. I wrote about their conference last year, and this year's conference was slightly bigger and even better than last year. This year they had four tracks, Leadership, Technical, Healthcare and Education.


For those of you who have not been to Columbia, it is the place where people smile at you when they greet you, where people say “sir” and “m'am”, “please” and “thank you”, and (according to the Mayor) the weather is perfect every day. Add to that the comfortable conference hotel and the fact that good beer and southern cooking is right across the street from the convention center, and you probably can guess why I like going back.


Mr. Steve Benjamin, the Mayor of Columbia, spoke at the speaker's dinner the night before the conference started and offered us a “get out of jail free” card (actually his business card). I was the only speaker to accept one, but everyone agreed that for me it was good insurance.


As always, I met some new friends, and (since I had been to this conference before), enjoyed seeing some old friends. Last year they were just starting to put together the Consortium for Enterprise Systems Management to work toward expanding the number of Enterprise Systems IT people in the Southeast. This year they opened a new facility in downtown Columbia which has rooms to offer workshops and other events, as well as for staff to coordinate their programs.


One of things that POSSCON does is to video tape a lot of their speaker's talks, and to make them available online to anyone who wishes to see them. They have just posted their videos.


You may want to look at the speaker's abstracts and pull down their actual slides first, as some of the video of the slides tried to capture the speaker also, and so the speaker's slide content in the video is a little small and hard to read. It may be easier for you to then listen to the video and read the slides that you have pulled down separately.


For those of you who are interested in FOSS trends in the marketplace, I can particularly recommend the talk by Jeffery Hammond of Forrester Research. This was Jeffery's second year at POSSCON and I enjoyed his perspective on things both years.


Another area that I really enjoyed was the workshop on 3D Printing and Open Hardware. Jim McCracken and Neil Underwood brought along several 3D printing devices, and I walked away with a really cool Android “Robot” that I was told would hold my Android phone, but which I may use to hold business cards on my desk since my phone mostly sits in its charging cradle if it is sitting anywhere.


So for those people who (unfortunately) could not make it to this conference, or (as in my case) were busy giving their talk in another track while interesting talks were going on in parallel, you can now pull the talks down, flip through the slides and listen to the speakers present. Almost as good as being there, but you won't be able to taste that good southern food, nor get out of jail for free!


Carpe Diem!


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