We’ve been sharing the booth together with Univention. And it was indeed really a very nice booth (see pictures). I must say, it really is awesome to share the booth with these people, as they share the same mindset. It truly (at least for me) always ends up in a family gathering type of event where we get the chance to spread our message for interested people (aka visitors ;)). Also our booth was in fact more busy than we’ve (or at least I’ve) thought it would be. Just I had easily around 50 talks with interested people in around 2 days.
Next to prominent speakers in the free and open source software (FOSS) world such as Klaus Knopper and John “maddog” Hall (if you don’t know these two, you’ve probably missed something in the open source world) I have had the honor to show in the Open Source Park on Monday what Kopano is all about. There have been indeed quite some interesting discussions after my presentation, so it was definitely worth being there.
Well, and then we had our annual bowling event where many Partners of Kopano show up and just have a good time with pizza, beer and of course, bowling. And when someone like Matthew Rice (from LPI) and John Hall show up as well, then you know this certainly goternational ;). We’ve had some awesome thanks everyone for all the fun!
Open Source and its standing at CeBit?
Indeed, we’ve received some really nice feedback from multiple sources for what we are doing: So thanks a lot, it was a pleasure showing you what we are doing! But: This is now an open call to all people at CeBit and the ones that might be able to influence CeBit management: If you continue your focus entirely on your B2B environment, you are entirely forgetting the growing market of consumers, users or geeks. The linux kernel wasn’t made in some proprietary business only-area, yet it runs the majority of server systems nowadays. Facebook and Google have business customers since the businesses want to get in touch with their “consumers”.
Next to that since the loss of the LinuxTag in Berlin (due to organizational limits of the organizers) you’ve had the perfect opportunity in getting a very professional audience switched over to you. With leaving this out I would say this is a lost opportunity. Therefore a recommendation and call from here: Do something to attract some broader mass than just people in business suits. If you want comparable, large events with a very broad audience as an example, just take FOSDEM, which attracts people from all over the world. Make a small “semi-business FOSDEM” somewhere in 1-2 halls – you have plenty of unused space left anyways, and you can then stop keeping prices growing for nothing.
CeBit’s move with moving into summer: This alone will not help. But at least you are showing some movement, let’s hope you can do something also with the above ideas. Making it more an “event” like you’ve announced: great. Don’t forget especially the FOSS scene which has been feeling quite “superfluous” for the last years in comparison to the rest of the exhibitors. There you have growth potential – use it!
Oh yeah, and when you start growing again you can stop charging 5,60 EUR for 0,5l of apple juice.
We know about the importance of Open Source. And we are willing to represent Open Source at IT-shows like CeBIT. But, dear CeBIT, if you place Open Source in the middle of nowhere we only can join by bringing our own fun to the event