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Attending FOSDEM 2024

As is becoming a tradition, I'm attending this year's FOSDEM in Brussels, on February 3 & 4. Let me know if you're also around and want to meet up!


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This will be my 4th time attending FOSDEM; I was there in 2019, 2020, and 2023 (2021 and 2022 editions were held online). And I can definitely say I love this conference :D. Last year was also my first time presenting, and the experience was great. I'm in awe at how well the conference is run, given it's magnitude. And the fact that it's run by volunteers is even more impressive.

I actually haven't made much noise online, but I'm also presenting this year. However, it's just a 5-minute lightning talk about Moodle, so I didn't think it'd be of interest to most people who already know me. In fact, the point is to make Moodle known to people who are not familiar with it. In my little bubble I think that everybody already knows it, but my conversations with some attendees over the years showed me otherwise.

As always, I've gone through the schedule to see which talks I'm more keen to attend. And sure enough, many of them are overlapping. At least this will serve me as a reminder to watch the recordings later on. Overall it's looking good, but I do miss the Decentralized Internet and Privacy devroom and I can't help but notice the absence of anything mentioning the Solid Protocol :(.

I may also attend some OFFDEM sessions, but so far I haven't been able to find a schedule so I'm not sure how that will turn out.




Once again, it's a wrap.

This year I didn't attend as many talks as other years (I'll have to catch up on the recordings), but one of the few I enjoyed the most wasn't even listed in my previous update. And that was Take Your FOSS Project From Surviving To Thriving, from the Thunderbird team. Just the day before, I attended the OFFDEM Launch Party, and I was talking about the importance of having a path towards sustainability for Open Source projects (or any projects, really). I see many living off grants or, even worse, free labor. Which is fine at the beginning; but I think that's a very dangerous situation when a project has got some traction, or it has been going for a while. And that's exactly the main point of the talk. So if you're keen to learn more about this, check it out.

Another one of my highlights was, as expected, the Open Source Design devroom. I've come to enjoy Penpot's talks a lot (I also attended Penpot FEST back in July), and this year's talk was no exception. In particular, I was very happy to hear about applying a declarative vs imperative approach to Design. I think the Penpot team are doing a great job, and I'm very inspired with their mission to bring Developers and Designers together.

My own lightning talk about Moodle went well, and I was suprised with a round of applause in the middle of it. This happened after bringing up that this was the first talk about Moodle in the 24 years of FOSDEM (which is, concidentally, as old as Moodle itself). So I guess a lot of people are already familiar with Moodle, but it seems like its Open Source nature and everything else we're doing is not as well known. Hopefully, this will inspire others to talk more about Moodle in FOSDEM!

Besides attending the talks, I also met a couple of interesting people. In particular, I had many talks with and about the NLnet Foundation. I was already familiar with them and some of the projects they've funded, but I realized they've done a lot more than I thought (I learned they even funded Mastodon!). It was interesting to hear they opinion about the Solid ecosystem and where it's going, and I've finally got my hands on some Solid stickers.

Finally, this year I was able to end the trip with a visit to my favourite sandwich shop; and I can confirm it's still as delightful as ever. Mission accomplished!

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