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The third and last day at the exposition was without a doubt the best day of them all! There were times when I was completely surrounded by people who just wanted to chit-chat… but there were many chances to just walk around, talk to people, take a few extra pictures and not worry about leaving my helper alone in the booth.  Some of the highlights in my oppinion were:

  • The guys from Slashdot were playing XBox 360 all day long using the huge screen they had set up at their lounge area;

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  • They also brought in a freezer filled to the top with ice cream, which quickly vanished as they started distributing it together with other things such as t-shirts;
  • I got to meet Komander Taco, the “brain”behind Slashdot;

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  • I got to meet Jon “Mad Dogâ€Â? Hall;
  • I got to meet Mitch Pirtle, one of the core developers for Joomla and convinced him to be a guest speaker at the MySQL User Group I go to in the near future.  Without a doubt, a great guy!

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  • Got to meet Ivan Krstić, one of the co-authors for the upcoming book “The Official Ubuntu Book.â€Â? He approached our booth and pretended to be a new Linux user, asking me: “Why should I use Ubuntu Linux?â€Â? and “How is the server version?â€Â? I gave him the best answer I could come up with at the moment, telling him that he should use which ever distribution better served his needs, even if that meant using something else besides Ubuntu.  In the end he told me his true identity and told me I had actually given a very good answer;
  • I met and convinced Jack, one of the developers from the Fedora project to also be a guest speaker;

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  • Someone visiting from New Jersey brought me his PowerPC so I could take a look and help him figure out why his wireless card wouldn’t work.  After playing with it for a bit I noticed that I couldn’t get an IP address assigned to his card.  Luckly, Joseph, the lead PowerPC developer for Gentoo Linux was around and was more than happy to lend us a hand.  After performing a real “operationâ€Â? on the powerbook, we realized that the problem was due to an older version of the firware.  We promptly walked to the Mac guys who were also at the expo and after doing some pretty neat booting tricks via the firewire ports, we were able to upgrade the firmaware and get the PowerPC to connect to the local access point! ;)

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  • Another pretty neat thing that took place at the expo was when near the closing time, the O’Reilly guys simply decided to give all of the books they hand on display (a couple of thousands in my rough estimate) away!  Amazing!!!  I walked out of the exposition floor with a whole box of great books!  I intend to share the loot with people from the user groups I go to…

Overall, I got to meet a great deal of interesting people and I just couldn’t mention all of the events that took place over those 3 days!  I ended up spending approximately $900 out of my pocket for the priviledge of representing something I trully believe in!  Add the fact that I will not get paid for this week and you can imagine the financial blow I have taken…  But no money could have bought the experience and sheer pleasure to talk to several hundred users who wouldn’t stop bragging how much they liked our distro!

Just like the Visa adds on TV:  PRICELESS!


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