settingsLogin | Registersettings

[openstack-dev] [all][tc] Proposal: Separate design summits from OpenStack conferences

0 votes

Hello all,

tl;dr
=====

I have long thought that the OpenStack Summits have become too
commercial and provide little value to the software engineers
contributing to OpenStack.

I propose the following:

1) Separate the design summits from the conferences
2) Hold only a single OpenStack conference per year
3) Return the design summit to being a low-key, low-cost working event

details
=======

The design summits originally started out as working events. Developers
got together in smallish rooms, arranged chairs in a fishbowl, and got
to work planning and designing.

With the OpenStack Summit growing more and more marketing- and
sales-focused, the contributors attending the design summit are often
unfocused. The precious little time that developers have to actually
work on the next release planning is often interrupted or cut short by
the large numbers of "suits" and salespeople at the conference event,
many of which are peddling a product or pushing a corporate agenda.

Many contributors submit talks to speak at the conference part of an
OpenStack Summit because their company says it's the only way they will
pay for them to attend the design summit. This is, IMHO, a terrible
thing. The design summit is a working event. Companies that contribute
to OpenStack projects should send their engineers to working events
because that is where work is done, not so that their engineer can go
give a talk about some vendor's agenda-item or newfangled product.

Part of the reason that companies only send engineers who are giving a
talk at the conference side is that the cost of attending the OpenStack
Summit has become ludicrously expensive. Why have the events become so
expensive? I can think of a few reasons:

a) They are held every six months. I know of no other community or open
source project that holds conference-type events every six months.

b) They are held in extremely expensive hotels and conference centers
because the number of attendees is so big.

c) Because the conferences have become sales and marketing-focused
events, companies shell out hundreds of thousands of dollars for schwag,
for rented event people, for food and beverage sponsorships, for keynote
slots, for lavish and often ridiculous parties, and more. This cost
means less money to send engineers to the design summit to do actual work.

I would love to see the OpenStack contributor community take back the
design summit to its original format and purpose and decouple it from
the OpenStack Summit's conference portion.

I believe the design summits should be organized by the OpenStack
contributor community, not the OpenStack Foundation and its marketing
and event planning staff. This will allow lower-cost venues to be chosen
that meet the needs only of the small group of active contributors, not
of huge masses of conference attendees. This will allow contributor
companies to send more engineers to more design summits, which is
something that really needs to happen if we are to grow our active
contributor pool.

Once this decoupling occurs, I think that the OpenStack Summit should be
renamed to the OpenStack Conference and Expo to better fit its purpose
and focus. This Conference and Expo event really should be held once a
year, in my opinion, and continue to be run by the OpenStack Foundation.

I, for one, would welcome events that have no conference check-in area,
no evening parties with 2000 people, no keynote and
powerpoint-as-a-service sessions, and no getting pulled into sales meetings.

OK, there, I said it.

Thoughts? Criticism? Support? Suggestions welcome.

-jay


OpenStack Development Mailing List (not for usage questions)
Unsubscribe: OpenStack-dev-request@lists.openstack.org?subject:unsubscribe
http://lists.openstack.org/cgi-bin/mailman/listinfo/openstack-dev
asked Feb 7, 2016 in openstack-dev by Jay_Pipes (59,760 points)   3 11 14

54 Responses

0 votes

Brian Curtin wrote:
On Sun, Feb 7, 2016 at 3:07 PM, Jay Pipes jaypipes@gmail.com wrote:

I would love to see the OpenStack contributor community take back the design
summit to its original format and purpose and decouple it from the OpenStack
Summit's conference portion.

I believe the design summits should be organized by the OpenStack
contributor community, not the OpenStack Foundation and its marketing and
event planning staff.

As someone who spent years organizing PyCon as a volunteer from the
Python community, with four of those years in a row taking about 8
solid months of pre-conference effort, not to mention the on-site
effort to run a volunteer conference of that size [0]...I would
suggest even longer and harder thought before stretching a community
like this even more thinly. Things should change, but probably not the
"who's doing the work" aspect.

Beyond stretching out the community, we would end up with the same
problem we are trying to solve. Most of the cross-project folks that
would end up organizing the event would be too busy organizing the event
to be able to fully participate in it.

--
Thierry Carrez (ttx)


OpenStack Development Mailing List (not for usage questions)
Unsubscribe: OpenStack-dev-request@lists.openstack.org?subject:unsubscribe
http://lists.openstack.org/cgi-bin/mailman/listinfo/openstack-dev
responded Feb 8, 2016 by Thierry_Carrez (57,480 points)   3 8 15
0 votes

On 02/08/2016 10:07 AM, Thierry Carrez wrote:
Brian Curtin wrote:

On Sun, Feb 7, 2016 at 3:07 PM, Jay Pipes jaypipes@gmail.com wrote:

I would love to see the OpenStack contributor community take back the
design
summit to its original format and purpose and decouple it from the
OpenStack
Summit's conference portion.

I believe the design summits should be organized by the OpenStack
contributor community, not the OpenStack Foundation and its marketing
and
event planning staff.

As someone who spent years organizing PyCon as a volunteer from the
Python community, with four of those years in a row taking about 8
solid months of pre-conference effort, not to mention the on-site
effort to run a volunteer conference of that size [0]...I would
suggest even longer and harder thought before stretching a community
like this even more thinly. Things should change, but probably not the
"who's doing the work" aspect.

Beyond stretching out the community, we would end up with the same
problem we are trying to solve. Most of the cross-project folks that
would end up organizing the event would be too busy organizing the event
to be able to fully participate in it.

Right, this is a super key point. Even just organizing and running local
user groups, I know how much time is spent making sure the whole thing
seems effortless to attendees, and they can just focus on content.

Even look at the recently run Nova midcycle, with 40ish folks, it still
required some substantial logistics to pull off. The HPE team did a
great job with that. But it definitely required real time and effort.

The Foundation has done an amazing job of making everyone think this is
easy (I know how much it is not). Without their efforts organizing these
events, eliminating the distractions of wandering in a strange city to
find lunch, having a network, projectors, access to facilities,
appropriate sized spaces, double checking all those things will really
actually be there, chasing after folks when they are not, handling the
myriad of other unforseen issues that you never have to see.... we would
not be nearly as productive at the design summits.

So while I agree it's worth considering whether the Mega Conference and
Design Summit should continue to be collocated and on the same time
table, I think the idea that the Design Summit, at even only 500
attendees, could/should be run without the Foundation is just folly
based on a lack of understanding for what it takes to do events at that
scale. And massively underestimates the effort and skill the Foundation
has at making our events run as smoothly as they do.

-Sean

--
Sean Dague
http://dague.net


OpenStack Development Mailing List (not for usage questions)
Unsubscribe: OpenStack-dev-request@lists.openstack.org?subject:unsubscribe
http://lists.openstack.org/cgi-bin/mailman/listinfo/openstack-dev
responded Feb 8, 2016 by Sean_Dague (66,200 points)   4 11 18
0 votes

On Feb 8, 2016, at 7:07 AM, Thierry Carrez thierry@openstack.org wrote:

Brian Curtin wrote:

On Sun, Feb 7, 2016 at 3:07 PM, Jay Pipes jaypipes@gmail.com wrote:
I would love to see the OpenStack contributor community take back the design
summit to its original format and purpose and decouple it from the OpenStack
Summit's conference portion.

I believe the design summits should be organized by the OpenStack
contributor community, not the OpenStack Foundation and its marketing and
event planning staff.

As someone who spent years organizing PyCon as a volunteer from the
Python community, with four of those years in a row taking about 8
solid months of pre-conference effort, not to mention the on-site
effort to run a volunteer conference of that size [0]...I would
suggest even longer and harder thought before stretching a community
like this even more thinly. Things should change, but probably not the
"who's doing the work" aspect.

Beyond stretching out the community, we would end up with the same problem we are trying to solve. Most of the cross-project folks that would end up organizing the event would be too busy organizing the event to be able to fully participate in it.

+1000.

--j


OpenStack Development Mailing List (not for usage questions)
Unsubscribe: OpenStack-dev-request@lists.openstack.org?subject:unsubscribe
http://lists.openstack.org/cgi-bin/mailman/listinfo/openstack-dev
responded Feb 8, 2016 by Jim_Meyer (760 points)   1
0 votes

On 02/08/2016 10:29 AM, Sean Dague wrote:
On 02/08/2016 10:07 AM, Thierry Carrez wrote:

Brian Curtin wrote:

On Sun, Feb 7, 2016 at 3:07 PM, Jay Pipes jaypipes@gmail.com wrote:

I would love to see the OpenStack contributor community take back the
design
summit to its original format and purpose and decouple it from the
OpenStack
Summit's conference portion.

I believe the design summits should be organized by the OpenStack
contributor community, not the OpenStack Foundation and its marketing
and
event planning staff.

As someone who spent years organizing PyCon as a volunteer from the
Python community, with four of those years in a row taking about 8
solid months of pre-conference effort, not to mention the on-site
effort to run a volunteer conference of that size [0]...I would
suggest even longer and harder thought before stretching a community
like this even more thinly. Things should change, but probably not the
"who's doing the work" aspect.

Beyond stretching out the community, we would end up with the same
problem we are trying to solve. Most of the cross-project folks that
would end up organizing the event would be too busy organizing the event
to be able to fully participate in it.

Right, this is a super key point. Even just organizing and running local
user groups, I know how much time is spent making sure the whole thing
seems effortless to attendees, and they can just focus on content.

Even look at the recently run Nova midcycle, with 40ish folks, it still
required some substantial logistics to pull off. The HPE team did a
great job with that. But it definitely required real time and effort.

Agreed.

The Foundation has done an amazing job of making everyone think this is
easy (I know how much it is not). Without their efforts organizing these
events, eliminating the distractions of wandering in a strange city to
find lunch, having a network, projectors, access to facilities,
appropriate sized spaces, double checking all those things will really
actually be there, chasing after folks when they are not, handling the
myriad of other unforseen issues that you never have to see.... we would
not be nearly as productive at the design summits.

I understand this. I ran the MySQL Users Conference and Expo for 2
years. I realize the amount of effort it takes to organize a 2500+
person event. It's essentially a full-time job.

I suppose I should have used a different wording. What I really think
should happen is that a separate team should handle organizing the
developer-focused working events than the main team that does the
marketing event. I recognize that it's a lot of work and that asking the
"community" to just handle the working event organization will lead to
undue burden on certain cross-project folks.

However, here are a couple things that do not need to be done by a
separate team that handles working event organization:

1) Vendor and sponsorship stuff
2) A call for speakers and reviewing thousands of submissions (this is
self-organized by each project's contributor team for the working events)
3) Determining keynote slots and wrangling C-level speakers -- or any
speaker wrangling at all
4) "Check-in" and registration stands
5) Dealing with schwag, giveaways, parties, and other superfluous stuff

So, yes, while it's a lot of work, it's not the same kind of work as the
marketing event staff.

So while I agree it's worth considering whether the Mega Conference and
Design Summit should continue to be collocated and on the same time
table, I think the idea that the Design Summit, at even only 500
attendees, could/should be run without the Foundation is just folly
based on a lack of understanding for what it takes to do events at that
scale.

For the record, I do understand what it takes to do events at that scale.

And massively underestimates the effort and skill the Foundation
has at making our events run as smoothly as they do.

I wasn't saying anything about the effort and skill the Foundation
expends on making the marketing events run smoothly.

I am pushing for a return to working events for developers.

-jay


OpenStack Development Mailing List (not for usage questions)
Unsubscribe: OpenStack-dev-request@lists.openstack.org?subject:unsubscribe
http://lists.openstack.org/cgi-bin/mailman/listinfo/openstack-dev
responded Feb 8, 2016 by Jay_Pipes (59,760 points)   3 11 14
0 votes

On Mon, Feb 8, 2016 at 11:19 AM, Jay Pipes jaypipes@gmail.com wrote:

On 02/08/2016 10:29 AM, Sean Dague wrote:

On 02/08/2016 10:07 AM, Thierry Carrez wrote:

Brian Curtin wrote:

On Sun, Feb 7, 2016 at 3:07 PM, Jay Pipes jaypipes@gmail.com wrote:

I would love to see the OpenStack contributor community take back the
design
summit to its original format and purpose and decouple it from the
OpenStack
Summit's conference portion.

I believe the design summits should be organized by the OpenStack
contributor community, not the OpenStack Foundation and its marketing
and
event planning staff.

As someone who spent years organizing PyCon as a volunteer from the
Python community, with four of those years in a row taking about 8
solid months of pre-conference effort, not to mention the on-site
effort to run a volunteer conference of that size [0]...I would
suggest even longer and harder thought before stretching a community
like this even more thinly. Things should change, but probably not the
"who's doing the work" aspect.

Beyond stretching out the community, we would end up with the same
problem we are trying to solve. Most of the cross-project folks that
would end up organizing the event would be too busy organizing the event
to be able to fully participate in it.

Right, this is a super key point. Even just organizing and running local
user groups, I know how much time is spent making sure the whole thing
seems effortless to attendees, and they can just focus on content.

Even look at the recently run Nova midcycle, with 40ish folks, it still
required some substantial logistics to pull off. The HPE team did a
great job with that. But it definitely required real time and effort.

Agreed.

The Foundation has done an amazing job of making everyone think this is

easy (I know how much it is not). Without their efforts organizing these
events, eliminating the distractions of wandering in a strange city to
find lunch, having a network, projectors, access to facilities,
appropriate sized spaces, double checking all those things will really
actually be there, chasing after folks when they are not, handling the
myriad of other unforseen issues that you never have to see.... we would
not be nearly as productive at the design summits.

I understand this. I ran the MySQL Users Conference and Expo for 2 years.
I realize the amount of effort it takes to organize a 2500+ person event.
It's essentially a full-time job.

I suppose I should have used a different wording. What I really think
should happen is that a separate team should handle organizing the
developer-focused working events than the main team that does the marketing
event. I recognize that it's a lot of work and that asking the "community"
to just handle the working event organization will lead to undue burden on
certain cross-project folks.

However, here are a couple things that do not need to be done by a
separate team that handles working event organization:

1) Vendor and sponsorship stuff
2) A call for speakers and reviewing thousands of submissions (this is
self-organized by each project's contributor team for the working events)
3) Determining keynote slots and wrangling C-level speakers -- or any
speaker wrangling at all
4) "Check-in" and registration stands
5) Dealing with schwag, giveaways, parties, and other superfluous stuff

So, yes, while it's a lot of work, it's not the same kind of work as the
marketing event staff.

So while I agree it's worth considering whether the Mega Conference and

Design Summit should continue to be collocated and on the same time
table, I think the idea that the Design Summit, at even only 500
attendees, could/should be run without the Foundation is just folly
based on a lack of understanding for what it takes to do events at that
scale.

For the record, I do understand what it takes to do events at that scale.

And massively underestimates the effort and skill the Foundation

has at making our events run as smoothly as they do.

I wasn't saying anything about the effort and skill the Foundation expends
on making the marketing events run smoothly.

I am pushing for a return to working events for developers.

-jay


OpenStack Development Mailing List (not for usage questions)
Unsubscribe: OpenStack-dev-request@lists.openstack.org?subject:unsubscribe
http://lists.openstack.org/cgi-bin/mailman/listinfo/openstack-dev

Reworded like that , with no additional burden on the engineers, and
without taking off the fan part of it, it makes a lots of sense.

So are you proposing to do an engineering hardcore Design only summit, less
expensive, like it was in the old days, something like the Usenix or the
Hacking Gathering? Yeah, I miss a lots that and I like it.

++


OpenStack Development Mailing List (not for usage questions)
Unsubscribe: OpenStack-dev-request@lists.openstack.org?subject:unsubscribe
http://lists.openstack.org/cgi-bin/mailman/listinfo/openstack-dev
responded Feb 8, 2016 by Fausto_Marzi (900 points)  
0 votes

On 02/08/2016 11:11 AM, Fausto Marzi wrote:
On Mon, Feb 8, 2016 at 11:19 AM, Jay Pipes jaypipes@gmail.com wrote:

On 02/08/2016 10:29 AM, Sean Dague wrote:

On 02/08/2016 10:07 AM, Thierry Carrez wrote:

Brian Curtin wrote:

On Sun, Feb 7, 2016 at 3:07 PM, Jay Pipes jaypipes@gmail.com wrote:

I would love to see the OpenStack contributor community take back the
design
summit to its original format and purpose and decouple it from the
OpenStack
Summit's conference portion.

I believe the design summits should be organized by the OpenStack
contributor community, not the OpenStack Foundation and its marketing
and
event planning staff.

As someone who spent years organizing PyCon as a volunteer from the
Python community, with four of those years in a row taking about 8
solid months of pre-conference effort, not to mention the on-site
effort to run a volunteer conference of that size [0]...I would
suggest even longer and harder thought before stretching a community
like this even more thinly. Things should change, but probably not the
"who's doing the work" aspect.

Beyond stretching out the community, we would end up with the same
problem we are trying to solve. Most of the cross-project folks that
would end up organizing the event would be too busy organizing the event
to be able to fully participate in it.

Right, this is a super key point. Even just organizing and running local
user groups, I know how much time is spent making sure the whole thing
seems effortless to attendees, and they can just focus on content.

Even look at the recently run Nova midcycle, with 40ish folks, it still
required some substantial logistics to pull off. The HPE team did a
great job with that. But it definitely required real time and effort.

Agreed.

The Foundation has done an amazing job of making everyone think this is

easy (I know how much it is not). Without their efforts organizing these
events, eliminating the distractions of wandering in a strange city to
find lunch, having a network, projectors, access to facilities,
appropriate sized spaces, double checking all those things will really
actually be there, chasing after folks when they are not, handling the
myriad of other unforseen issues that you never have to see.... we would
not be nearly as productive at the design summits.

I understand this. I ran the MySQL Users Conference and Expo for 2 years.
I realize the amount of effort it takes to organize a 2500+ person event.
It's essentially a full-time job.

I suppose I should have used a different wording. What I really think
should happen is that a separate team should handle organizing the
developer-focused working events than the main team that does the marketing
event. I recognize that it's a lot of work and that asking the "community"
to just handle the working event organization will lead to undue burden on
certain cross-project folks.

However, here are a couple things that do not need to be done by a
separate team that handles working event organization:

1) Vendor and sponsorship stuff
2) A call for speakers and reviewing thousands of submissions (this is
self-organized by each project's contributor team for the working events)
3) Determining keynote slots and wrangling C-level speakers -- or any
speaker wrangling at all
4) "Check-in" and registration stands
5) Dealing with schwag, giveaways, parties, and other superfluous stuff

So, yes, while it's a lot of work, it's not the same kind of work as the
marketing event staff.

So while I agree it's worth considering whether the Mega Conference and

Design Summit should continue to be collocated and on the same time
table, I think the idea that the Design Summit, at even only 500
attendees, could/should be run without the Foundation is just folly
based on a lack of understanding for what it takes to do events at that
scale.

For the record, I do understand what it takes to do events at that scale.

And massively underestimates the effort and skill the Foundation

has at making our events run as smoothly as they do.

I wasn't saying anything about the effort and skill the Foundation expends
on making the marketing events run smoothly.

I am pushing for a return to working events for developers.

-jay


OpenStack Development Mailing List (not for usage questions)
Unsubscribe: OpenStack-dev-request@lists.openstack.org?subject:unsubscribe
http://lists.openstack.org/cgi-bin/mailman/listinfo/openstack-dev

Reworded like that , with no additional burden on the engineers, and
without taking off the fan part of it, it makes a lots of sense.

So are you proposing to do an engineering hardcore Design only summit, less
expensive, like it was in the old days, something like the Usenix or the
Hacking Gathering? Yeah, I miss a lots that and I like it.

++

I believe the current status of the conversation is to allow Thierry and
team time to finish their strawman and propose it to the community so
that we may comment:
http://lists.openstack.org/pipermail/openstack-dev/2016-February/086028.html

As Thierry has requested time to do so.

Thank you,
Anita.


OpenStack Development Mailing List (not for usage questions)
Unsubscribe: OpenStack-dev-request@lists.openstack.org?subject:unsubscribe
http://lists.openstack.org/cgi-bin/mailman/listinfo/openstack-dev


OpenStack Development Mailing List (not for usage questions)
Unsubscribe: OpenStack-dev-request@lists.openstack.org?subject:unsubscribe
http://lists.openstack.org/cgi-bin/mailman/listinfo/openstack-dev
responded Feb 8, 2016 by Anita_Kuno (21,320 points)   3 3 4
0 votes

On 02/07/2016 09:07 PM, Jay Pipes wrote:
Hello all,

tl;dr
=====

I have long thought that the OpenStack Summits have become too
commercial and provide little value to the software engineers
contributing to OpenStack.

I propose the following:

1) Separate the design summits from the conferences
2) Hold only a single OpenStack conference per year
3) Return the design summit to being a low-key, low-cost working event

It sounds like a great idea, but I have a couple of concerns - see below.

details
=======

The design summits originally started out as working events. Developers
got together in smallish rooms, arranged chairs in a fishbowl, and got
to work planning and designing.

With the OpenStack Summit growing more and more marketing- and
sales-focused, the contributors attending the design summit are often
unfocused. The precious little time that developers have to actually
work on the next release planning is often interrupted or cut short by
the large numbers of "suits" and salespeople at the conference event,
many of which are peddling a product or pushing a corporate agenda.

Many contributors submit talks to speak at the conference part of an
OpenStack Summit because their company says it's the only way they will
pay for them to attend the design summit. This is, IMHO, a terrible
thing. The design summit is a working event. Companies that contribute
to OpenStack projects should send their engineers to working events
because that is where work is done, not so that their engineer can go
give a talk about some vendor's agenda-item or newfangled product.

I'm afraid that if a company does not value employees participation in
the design summit alone, they will continue to send them to the
conference event, ignoring the design part completely. I.e. we'll get
even less people from these companies. (of course it's only me guessing)

Also it means that people who actually have to be present in both places
will travel even more, so it has high chances of increasing budget, not
decreasing it.

Part of the reason that companies only send engineers who are giving a
talk at the conference side is that the cost of attending the OpenStack
Summit has become ludicrously expensive. Why have the events become so
expensive? I can think of a few reasons:

a) They are held every six months. I know of no other community or open
source project that holds conference-type events every six months.

b) They are held in extremely expensive hotels and conference centers
because the number of attendees is so big.

On one hand, big +1 for "extremely expensive" part.

On another hand, for participants arriving from another continent the
airfare is roughly the half of the whole expense. This probably can't be
improved (and may actually become worse from some of us, if new events
become more US-centric).

c) Because the conferences have become sales and marketing-focused
events, companies shell out hundreds of thousands of dollars for schwag,
for rented event people, for food and beverage sponsorships, for keynote
slots, for lavish and often ridiculous parties, and more. This cost
means less money to send engineers to the design summit to do actual work.

I would love to see the OpenStack contributor community take back the
design summit to its original format and purpose and decouple it from
the OpenStack Summit's conference portion.

I believe the design summits should be organized by the OpenStack
contributor community, not the OpenStack Foundation and its marketing
and event planning staff. This will allow lower-cost venues to be chosen
that meet the needs only of the small group of active contributors, not
of huge masses of conference attendees. This will allow contributor
companies to send more engineers to more design summits, which is
something that really needs to happen if we are to grow our active
contributor pool.

Once this decoupling occurs, I think that the OpenStack Summit should be
renamed to the OpenStack Conference and Expo to better fit its purpose
and focus. This Conference and Expo event really should be held once a
year, in my opinion, and continue to be run by the OpenStack Foundation.

I, for one, would welcome events that have no conference check-in area,
no evening parties with 2000 people, no keynote and
powerpoint-as-a-service sessions, and no getting pulled into sales
meetings.

OK, there, I said it.

Thoughts? Criticism? Support? Suggestions welcome.

-jay


OpenStack Development Mailing List (not for usage questions)
Unsubscribe: OpenStack-dev-request@lists.openstack.org?subject:unsubscribe
http://lists.openstack.org/cgi-bin/mailman/listinfo/openstack-dev


OpenStack Development Mailing List (not for usage questions)
Unsubscribe: OpenStack-dev-request@lists.openstack.org?subject:unsubscribe
http://lists.openstack.org/cgi-bin/mailman/listinfo/openstack-dev
responded Feb 8, 2016 by Dmitry_Tantsur (18,080 points)   2 3 8
0 votes

On Mon, 2016-02-08 at 09:43 -0500, Jay Pipes wrote:
On 02/08/2016 09:03 AM, Fausto Marzi wrote:

The OpenStack Summit is a great thing as it is now. It creates big
momentum, it's a strong motivator for the engineers (as enjoy our
time
there)

I disagree with you on this. The design summits are intended to be
working events, not conference parties.

Having chaired and helped organise the Linux Plumbers conference for
the last 8 years, I don't agree with this. Agreeable social events are
actually part of the conference process. Someone who didn't dare
contradict the expert in a high pressure lecture room environment may
feel more confident to have a quiet discussion of their ideas over a
beer/wine at a social event.

Part of the function of a conference in a remote community is to let
people meet each other and get to know the person on the other end of
the fairly impersonal web id. It also helps defuse community squabbles
and hostility: it's easier to be nasty to someone you've never met and
who your only interaction with is via a ritual communication mechanism.

and the Companies are happy too with the business related side. I
see it also as the most successful Team building activity,
Community and
Company wide.

This isn't the intent of design summits. It's not intended to be a
company team building event.

Hey, if that's how you have to sell it to your boss ...

For Companies, the costs to send engineers to the Summit
or to a dedicated Design event are exactly the same.

This is absolutely not the case. Sending engineers to expensive
conference hotels for a full week or more is more expensive than
sending engineers to small hotels in smaller cities for shorter
amounts of focused time.

How real is this? Vancouver was a really expensive place, but a lot of
people who were deeply concerned about cost managed to find cheaper
hotels even there. You can always (or usually) find the option for the
cost conscious if you look. One of the advantages of large hub cities
is cheaper airfafe, which is usually a slightly more significant
component than accommodation. Once you start looking at "smaller"
cities with only a couple of airlines serving them, you'll find the
travel costs sky rocket.

Besides, many Companies send US based employees only to the US
Summit, and EU
based only to the other side. The OpenStack Summit is probably the
most advanced and successful OpenSource event, if you take out of
it the engineering side, it won't be the same.

I don't see the OpenStack Summit as being an advanced event. It has
become a vendor-driven suit-fest, IMHO.

Well, if we disdain its content and pull all the engineers away, that's
certainly a self fulfilling prophecy. Why not make it our mission to
try and give a more technical talk at the OpenStack summit itself? I
have ... I think most of the audience actually enjoyed it even if there
were a few suit types who found themselves in the wrong session. The
design summits are very strictly focussed. It's actually harder to
give more general technical talks there than it is at the summit
because of the severity of focus.

I think, the issue here is that we need to have a better and more
productive way to work together. Probably the motivation behind a
separate design summit and also this discussion is focused to
improve that, as we see that face to face is effective. Maybe this
is the limitation we need to resolve, rather than changing an
amazing event.

All I want is to be more productive. In my estimation, the Summits
have become vastly less productive than they used to be. Mid-cycles
are generally much more productive and much more cost-effective
because they don't have the distraction of the Summit party
atmosphere.

"... because thou art virtuous, there should be no more cakes and ale?"
... you're implying that we all party and forget work because of a
"party atmosphere". This doesn't accord with my experiences at all. I
may be less usual than most, but Vancouver was a foodie town ... I
spent all the evenings out to dinner with people I don't normally meet
... I skipped every party including the super special VIP ones (which,
admittedly, I'd intended to go to). Tokyo was about the same because I
had a lot of people to say "hello" to and it's fun going out for a
Japanese experience. People who go to the summit to party probably
aren't going to make much of a contribution in a separated design
summit anyway and people who don't can do just as well in either
atmosphere.

As someone who is responsible for recommending which Mirantis
engineers go to which events, I strongly favor sending more engineers
to more focused events at the expense of sending fewer engineers to
the expensive and unfocused OpenStack Summits.

As long as they mostly go to the associated design summit they're going
to a focussed event.

James


OpenStack Development Mailing List (not for usage questions)
Unsubscribe: OpenStack-dev-request@lists.openstack.org?subject:unsubscribe
http://lists.openstack.org/cgi-bin/mailman/listinfo/openstack-dev
responded Feb 8, 2016 by James_Bottomley (2,940 points)   2 2
0 votes

On Mon, 2016-02-08 at 10:49 -0500, Jay Pipes wrote:
5) Dealing with schwag, giveaways, parties, and other superfluous
stuff

As a confirmed introvert, I have to say that I rarely attend parties,
for a variety of reasons. However, I don't think our hypothetical
design-only meeting should completely eliminate parties, though we can
back off from some of the more extravagant ones. If we maintain at
least one party, I think that would satisfy the social needs of the
community without distracting too much from the main purpose of the
event. Of course, I agree with eliminating the other distracting
elements, such as schwag and giveaways…
--
Kevin L. Mitchell kevin.mitchell@rackspace.com
Rackspace


OpenStack Development Mailing List (not for usage questions)
Unsubscribe: OpenStack-dev-request@lists.openstack.org?subject:unsubscribe
http://lists.openstack.org/cgi-bin/mailman/listinfo/openstack-dev
responded Feb 8, 2016 by Kevin_L._Mitchell (4,550 points)   1 2 2
0 votes

On 02/08/2016 06:37 PM, Kevin L. Mitchell wrote:
On Mon, 2016-02-08 at 10:49 -0500, Jay Pipes wrote:

5) Dealing with schwag, giveaways, parties, and other superfluous
stuff

As a confirmed introvert, I have to say that I rarely attend parties,
for a variety of reasons. However, I don't think our hypothetical
design-only meeting should completely eliminate parties, though we can
back off from some of the more extravagant ones. If we maintain at
least one party, I think that would satisfy the social needs of the
community without distracting too much from the main purpose of the
event. Of course, I agree with eliminating the other distracting
elements, such as schwag and giveaways…

+1, I think we can just make a party somewhat less fancy


OpenStack Development Mailing List (not for usage questions)
Unsubscribe: OpenStack-dev-request@lists.openstack.org?subject:unsubscribe
http://lists.openstack.org/cgi-bin/mailman/listinfo/openstack-dev
responded Feb 8, 2016 by Dmitry_Tantsur (18,080 points)   2 3 8
...