I’m back in the land of the living after catching the dreaded lurgy on Monday morning. I’m pretty convinced this was in no small part to a lack of proper nourishment and excess of tasty beer consumed over the weekend. What can I say? I was busy.

Those of you who follow me in any capacity online will be at least peripherally aware that I’ve been involved in organising this year’s OggCamp, a 2-day unconference/barcamp style event celebrating Open Technology. It was an amazing event, with talks and sessions covering music, electronics, ethics, and of course software and computing. From my point of view, everything to do with the event went really well, and I’d just like to the opportunity to share my highlights and thank some people.

The first highlight for me happened at about 3pm on Saturday. I got a call on the radio from Tony, one of my co-organisers, to this effect:

Hello Mark? Can you get some loo roll brought to the gents? There’s three cubicles and we’ve all run out of paper!

Another cool thing for me was Adam Sweet coming up to me after the live podcast recording and chatting to me about how it went. Those of you unfamiliar with the name, Adam is one of the presenters of LugRadio, the long-running Linux podcast whose live event, LugRadio Live, gave rise to the first Oggcamp 3 years ago. The reason that this was a particular highlight for me was that listening to Adam and his partners in crime including Stuart “Aq” Langridge and Chris Proctor who I also had a good chat with was what made me want to get into radio and podcasting in the first place. Musicians, imagine being told you’ve just played a good set by the band who first made you think “I want to play like that” when you heard them.

The final highlight I’d like to share is the sheer relief when everything fell in to place at the last minute. The doors opened at 10am on Saturday, and people could submit talks to be given throughout the day. Our first scheduled talk was to start at 11. Around 10.30, I realised that our first speaker was no-where to be seen, and a lot of the talks people were proposing weren’t appearing on the scheduling system. Slightly panicked, I proceeded to sit down with my laptop and try and work out where everyone’s talks were. By 10.50, I’d managed to debug the problem and fix it, just in time for us to get on stage for our welcome talk. At 10.55, our first speaker walked in the door. I love it when a plan comes together.

Lastly, there are a lot of people I’d like to thank publicly, in no particular order:

  • Tony Whitmore, for somehow managing to keep an eye on everything in the lead-up to and during the event (not least the finances) without his head exploding.
  • Dan Lynch, for always having an idea when a problem arose.
  • Jon Spriggs, for a very long Skype call.
  • Laura Cowen, for telling me I was doing a good job exactly when I needed someone to.
  • Les Pounder and the rest of the event’s crew, for who there simply aren’t words. You guys are incredible, and without you there would be no Oggcamp.
  • All our sponsors: Bytemark Hosting, Canonical, Lug.org.uk, Bitfolk, Google, Apress, O’Reilly (ya, Reilly) and Linux Format, who without which there would also be no OggCamp, since they paid for it. Buy their stuff.
  • Alan Pope, for this, and Alan Bell for filming it:

If you think you deserved thanks and I’ve missed you out, you’re absolutely right, shame on me. Thank you.

See you at OggCamp 12!