All Things Open

All Things Open

Richie starts off the podcast by taking about the expansion of the Socially Numb website. He follows that up with some coverage of the All Things Open conference held in Raleigh, North Carolina every fall. Then he gets into the Playstation Network game Datura and how it was an extreme disappointment. He then dives into professional sports television packages and how the MLS playoffs are available over the air on Univision.

There was a tech bike that seemed like a great prize, but I wouldn’t know where to store it. I would imagine a tech bike would be stolen immediately. Bikes are items that are stolen frequently. If there is an area where increased tech can do some good, it would be bike GPS systems. It would be great to be able to track your bike from your phone. I think you would see thefts go down. I am hoping they offer up the tech bike as a prize, it would be great to see if it offers any of these modern features.

All Things Open 2016 – First Impressions

All Things Open is a technology convention that takes place downtown Raleigh, North Carolina every year. The goal of the convention is to promote open source technology. Open source technology is technology that is available for anyone to use and modify. This means that anyone can see the source code of an open source project and make improvements on it. A lot of large tech companies use open source software to run their products. A common example of this is Google running Android as their smartphone operating system. Android is a huge open source project.

The All Things Open convention marked the first time I have ever entered the Raleigh Convention Center. Traffic around Raleigh has never bothered me, as it has never been as bad as the traffic I have experienced traveling through Pittsburgh. There is a parking garage right beside the Convention Center that lets you park for $7. I am not sure how that compares to other cities but it seemed like a decent value for the convenience of not having to walk very far.

The keynote speaker began at 8:45 and there was an announcement regarding t-shirts. They were giving away shirts to the participants first to arrive at the convention in the morning. They announced that they did not have the shirts ready in time so they were sorry that some people who arrived first did not receive a shirt. I didn’t check in early so I wasn’t worried about the whole shirt ordeal. I was interested in the vendor booths. Since most people were taking a seat inside before the start of the keynote speaker, I took advantage of the short lines at the booths.

Typically at conventions, prizes are given away to attendees willing to sign up for mailing lists. This is a great way to make contacts in the business for people just starting out, but experienced veterans already have a contact list in their industry. Since I am not interested in the products, I look around to find the best prizes. The top prize in my eyes was a free laptop. You only had to give your email to enter the drawing which is a win. There are laws in place to get yourself removed from email lists easily. The laptop will be drawn during the second keynote speaker.

Other than the laptop, I found most of the prizes underwhelming. There were a lot of booths giving away free shirts, cups, stress relievers or water bottles. These are common prizes at any convention so there was no need for me to try to get any of them. The conference seems to be expanding rapidly. I am pleasantly surprised at the wifi connection speeds and am able to work while at the convention. If you work in tech and would like to learn about software that can cut costs, open source is the way to go. Based on first impression, I would recommend checking it out.