Meeting about DebConf 15

Convened at 2013-10-15 20:24:27.826964 by tumbleweed in #debconf15-capetown on oftc


[20:24:27] STARTED (tumbleweed)
[20:31:33] TOPIC: Venues (tumbleweed)
[21:13:28] TOPIC: what's next (tumbleweed)
[21:16:00] AGREED: tumbleweed to phone some venues in the morning (tumbleweed)
[21:18:37] ENDED (tumbleweed)


Raw Log

[20:24:27] <tumbleweed> tibid: start meeting about DebConf 15
[20:24:27] * tibid gets out his memo-pad and cracks his knuckles
[20:24:52] <highvoltage> tumbleweed: Shall we kick off with an intro for the meeting logs?
[20:25:11] <tumbleweed> might as well
[20:25:27] <tumbleweed> but no point wasting *too* much time on it
[20:25:29] <highvoltage> So, way back in 2012 tumbleweed and I attended DebConf in Managua, Nicaragua
[20:25:52] <highvoltage> there was quite a lot of interest in having a debconf in cape town (or South Africa in general)
[20:26:54] <highvoltage> we're also both keen to plan/organise it but have been running low on time and originally aimed for a bid in 2017/2018, providing plenty of time to plan and gather ideas and attend other debconfs to gain experience
[20:27:17] <tumbleweed> I've been to Debconf11 - 13, and whenever I introduce myself, people say "ooh, when are we having a DebConf there?"
[20:27:38] <highvoltage> since circustances have been improving and I'm back in SA, we're thinking that we can now aim for 2016 or possibly even 2015, depending on how well things go
[20:27:56] <highvoltage> circumstances, even
[20:28:06] <highvoltage> tumbleweed: I guess that about sums it up so far?
[20:28:11] <tumbleweed> at the very least, we can use 2015 as a test run, for a 2016 bid. Because the best time to start, is always now
[20:28:19] <highvoltage> so, our current bid page is on
[20:28:35] <highvoltage> we can probably use that as a base for our agenda for future meetings
[20:29:03] <tumbleweed> ok, I guess the main topic is Venues?
[20:29:40] <highvoltage> tumbleweed: I do think that if we're going to confirm our bid, it needs to be a serious bid. if it seems like a stretch then I think we should rather push it out a year
[20:30:51] <highvoltage> (I guess the debconf team would be experienced enough to sniff that out though (at least, I hope so))
[20:31:00] <tumbleweed> yeah
[20:31:04] <tumbleweed> that all sounds reasonable enough
[20:31:13] <highvoltage> tumbleweed: yep, I think putting together an initial team and venues is something we can cover for now
[20:31:21] <tumbleweed> if we get a venue that'll work for us, I think we're mostly set
[20:31:33] <tumbleweed> tibid: topic Venues
[20:31:33] <tibid> Current Topic: Venues
[20:31:51] <highvoltage> yep. AIMS really seems great but they can't cater for our original estimated guests
[20:32:08] <highvoltage> (I think I mentioned up to 400-500 originally to pipedream)
[20:32:20] <highvoltage> but it might actually be closer to 200-250
[20:32:24] <tumbleweed> yeah
[20:32:36] <tumbleweed> it's hard to predict, but I doubt we'll get 400
[20:32:48] <tumbleweed> unless we get some crazy huge sponsorship and can pay for everyone's travel
[20:32:58] <tumbleweed> pipedream: what is reasonable for AIMS?
[20:33:15] <highvoltage> so pipedream is in Italy until November. I suppose we should check which date he'll be available so that we can get together physically and talk.
[20:33:52] <highvoltage> wizzy also mentioned a hall or something down the street that AIMS used before when they had some overflow
[20:35:11] <tumbleweed> yeah
[20:35:17] <highvoltage> so I think if AIMS can work out then like you said, the rest would be more trivial to build around it
[20:36:01] <tumbleweed> I want to do a bit more scouting around for other venue options
[20:36:14] <highvoltage> I don't know about many good venues that has close-by accomodation at reasonable prices.
[20:36:19] <tumbleweed> that's the tough bit
[20:36:27] <highvoltage> I'm sure they exist, but we just need to spend that time doing the scouting
[20:36:41] <highvoltage> I can take some leave days for that
[20:36:50] <tumbleweed> so far, it seems that venues belonging to the city are very cheap
[20:37:02] <highvoltage> well, if we find a few potentials that we can go look at
[20:37:19] <tumbleweed> I was at the city hall this evening, which made me think about it
[20:37:27] <pipedream> the pavillion is not connected
[20:37:29] <tumbleweed> there are a huge number of big rooms on the top floor
[20:37:39] <pipedream> and does not really have rooms
[20:37:39] <highvoltage> that's good to hear. I'd think that most venues even in the city here would still be cheaper than what some of the previous debconfs (like switzerland and nyc) were
[20:37:41] <pipedream> and you pay to rent it
[20:38:08] <tumbleweed> the tough thing about most of these places would be bandwith
[20:38:14] <pipedream> we can maybe do 150 if nothing else is on,
[20:38:17] <pipedream> perhaps more
[20:38:28] <pipedream> timing is crucial, and breakout rooms also
[20:38:31] <pipedream> come have a look in November
[20:38:50] <highvoltage> pipedream: ah, that does seem to be a bit small
[20:39:51] <highvoltage> pipedream: paying for an additional close-by venue shouldn't be a problem, but there should at least be one big room that can hold everyone
[20:39:58] <highvoltage> (potentially 250+ people)
[20:40:39] <tumbleweed> a 5 minute walk between venues isn't ideal, nor is having two separate internet connections
[20:40:47] <tumbleweed> but I still really like the idea of AIMS
[20:41:44] <highvoltage> me too, but it doesn't seem that it's going to be big enough.
[20:42:49] <highvoltage> I think in the meantime we should go ahead and make a list of all the available venues that seem to make sense
[20:43:10] <tumbleweed> so, general areas we should be looking at
[20:43:32] <tumbleweed> the city bowl (easy transport, lots of hotels and conference venues)
[20:43:52] <tumbleweed> but much harder to make a nice conference environment, and security gets problematic
[20:44:11] <tumbleweed> southern suburbs - I'm sure there are some conference venues out there that we haven't heard of
[20:44:23] <tumbleweed> but probably much harder to find something with hotels nearby
[20:44:33] <tumbleweed> stellenbosch?
[20:44:39] <tumbleweed> somewhere else crazy?
[20:45:23] <highvoltage> this is accross the praekelt office and seems to be able to accomodate a lot of people:
[20:45:50] <highvoltage> (and you can partition the big area up to 8 pieces it seems)
[20:46:29] <tumbleweed> 300 people in the main ballroom
[20:46:54] <highvoltage> woodstock isn't the nicest places to stay though but I guess there are plenty of places not to far away that we can get shuttles for that run regularly
[20:49:18] <tumbleweed> yeah, it's not much better or worse than central town
[20:49:31] <tumbleweed> many of the same problems
[20:49:46] <tumbleweed> less places to party in the evenings, I guess
[20:49:47] <highvoltage>
[20:50:05] <tumbleweed> that'd probably be quite expensive
[20:50:43] <highvoltage> yeah I need to better understand what would be expensive
[20:51:32] <highvoltage> tumbleweed: what was the previous average budgets for accomodation? (I don't have the link handy)
[20:53:06] <tumbleweed> so, debconf12 budgeted for 150 attendees
[20:53:25] <tumbleweed> 45k USD hotel, 11k5 USD conference center, 22k USD food
[20:53:53] * highvoltage processes
[20:54:05] <tumbleweed> oh, final expenses. 35k hotel
[20:54:13] <tumbleweed> I guess that's because they squeezed us in 3 to a room
[20:54:32] <highvoltage> so the budget was around R3000 per person
[20:54:58] <highvoltage> so on average R9000 a room for a week with 3 people sharing
[20:55:07] <tumbleweed> there are other things on the budget that I didn't mention
[20:55:08] <highvoltage> that seems doable at local rates
[20:55:24] <tumbleweed> tibid: exchange 45000 USD to ZAR
[20:55:24] <tibid> tumbleweed: That site seems to be down
[20:55:29] <tumbleweed> pff
[20:55:35] <tumbleweed> I'll add a zero
[20:55:42] <highvoltage> yeah
[20:55:42] <tumbleweed> tibid: 450000 / 150
[20:55:42] <tibid> tumbleweed: 3000.0
[20:56:46] <tumbleweed> tibid: 115000 / 150
[20:56:46] <tibid> tumbleweed: 766.666666667
[20:58:34] <tumbleweed> tibid: 766 / 6
[20:58:34] <tibid> tumbleweed: 127.666666667
[20:58:37] <highvoltage> those could actually fit with some wheeling and dealing in the city. but if we do it somewhere crazy outside of cape town it might be possible to do something really nice for the same price
[20:58:51] <tumbleweed> so, we want a conference venue that'll take R120 per person per day, without food
[20:58:57] <tumbleweed> that's very cheap
[20:59:14] <tumbleweed> but they aren't used to conferences that organise themselves
[20:59:31] <highvoltage> yeah, that's where the wheeling and dealing comes in
[20:59:55] <tumbleweed> so, yes, to answer you
[21:00:09] <tumbleweed> I suspect our best bet is out of the city
[21:00:22] <tumbleweed> people don't want to come to cape town to see our city
[21:00:38] <tumbleweed> they want to be somewhere in the countryside / seaside
[21:00:47] <highvoltage> I'm sure those who do will do so on the daytrip or stay some extra days
[21:01:06] <tumbleweed> preferably out of the way, so that we can (safely) party all night, somewhere near the hacklabs
[21:01:48] <highvoltage> yeah
[21:02:14] <tumbleweed> for the logs:
[21:02:35] <tumbleweed> DebConfs tend to have 2 large talk rooms with live video streaming coverage
[21:02:45] <tumbleweed> (well, often one large, one small)
[21:03:14] <tumbleweed> then a couple of rooms for BoFs (get togethers, of < 20 people)
[21:03:36] <tumbleweed> and a few rooms with desks, for people to hack on things - hacklabs
[21:04:14] <tumbleweed> the hacklabs need to be able to accomadate most of the conference attendees - we're geeks, and sit on our laptops a lot
[21:04:30] <tumbleweed> the conference itself is about 7 days (but one is a day trip, no talks)
[21:04:45] <tumbleweed> and there are usually ~5 days before the conference for people to hack on things - debcamp
[21:05:09] <tumbleweed> this usually has some of the same hacklabs as the rest of the conference
[21:05:34] <tumbleweed> ok, I'm done
[21:05:58] <highvoltage> I'm doing some searches for venues, seems like options are really few
[21:06:20] <highvoltage> this doesn't look to bad though:
[21:07:45] <highvoltage> (maybe a bit expensive though)
[21:07:53] <tumbleweed>
[21:08:36] <highvoltage> ah wow, that's quite a lot of capacity
[21:09:05] <tumbleweed> and cheap
[21:09:24] <highvoltage> I can't find the price on there somehow
[21:09:27] <tumbleweed> oh, they all start at R250 / delegate apparently
[21:10:19] <highvoltage> I guess they can come down considerably for 200+ people over 7 days
[21:10:23] <highvoltage> well, at least a bit
[21:11:01] <highvoltage> so that's maybe one place we should go visit and meet up in person to find out what's possible
[21:11:48] <tumbleweed> I suspect we should probably start phoning / emailing places
[21:12:07] <tumbleweed> just hit a bunch of plausible places, and see what happens
[21:12:12] <highvoltage> yep
[21:13:03] <tumbleweed> ok, I'll try some in the morning
[21:13:24] <highvoltage> yep, getting a bit late. shall we pick this up in the morning and schedule the next chat then?
[21:13:28] <tumbleweed> tibid: topic what's next?
[21:13:28] <tibid> Current Topic: what's next
[21:13:44] <highvoltage> I'd also like to announce our intentions a bit more widely so that we can get more good people involved
[21:13:54] <tumbleweed> ok, schedule a meeting for a week? or maybe get a mailing list going, and post a doodle poll for meeting times?
[21:14:02] <tumbleweed> yeah, that'd be good
[21:14:15] <highvoltage> yes all of that :)
[21:14:49] <tumbleweed> I think we need to talk to the debconf team about southern hemisphere scheduling
[21:15:00] <tumbleweed> and what they suggest, for capacity planning
[21:15:28] <tumbleweed> so,
[21:15:45] <tumbleweed> we need to get onto those mailing lists and IRC channels, too
[21:15:46] <highvoltage> sounds good. can we add actions to tibid meetings?
[21:16:00] <tumbleweed> tibid: agreed tumbleweed to phone some venues in the morning
[21:16:00] <tibid> Agreed: tumbleweed to phone some venues in the morning
[21:16:11] * highvoltage joins #debconf and #debconf-team
[21:16:51] <tumbleweed> any more actions?
[21:18:17] <highvoltage> not anything else I can immediately think of
[21:18:22] <highvoltage> (for now anyway)
[21:18:29] <tumbleweed> end of meeting? going
[21:18:32] <highvoltage> yep
[21:18:35] <tumbleweed> going gone
[21:18:37] <tumbleweed> tibid: end meeting