[owncloud-devel] The longest SCALE report ever ;-)

Jos Poortvliet jospoortvliet at gmail.com
Mon Jan 25 14:58:43 GMT 2016

Hi all you awesominals!

Fosdem ain't here yet but SCALE14x is over and I thought I owed you all a bit 
of a report. The TL;DR is " it was and you are awesome", read on for details.

So SCALE14x had an ownCloud booth staffed by the Dynamic Duo Matt McGraw and 
yours truly. We had the usual flyers, posters and stickers but Matt had also 
brought a big monitor and Mountain Dew (by far not as natural as the name 
suggests. Hint: it is fluorescent green).

# The Story of the Mountain Dew
The plan with the drinks was to hand them out to people who would mention 
Chris' hair (the Linux Action Show host) - Matt had told people to come by our 
booth and ask about it to get a drink. Sadly, nobody did show, either due to 
fear of Mountain Dew (my bet) or there were few or no Linux Action Show 

# Pi Drive Kits
The monitor had another purpose: demo ownCloud, of course. That turned out 
real cool: upon arrival at my hotel, I had received a package with the latest 
prototypes of our Pi Drive kits! The casings have a cool ownCloud logo on them 
and there was a custom, 3d-printed cover to close the thing off on the top, 
looking real slick with ownCloud log cut-out! I'll show pictures later, will 
probably blog about it. Keep an eye on owncloud.org/news.

Anyhow, we assembled one Pi kit, put ownCloud on it (duh) and ran it from the 
screen so we could demo ownCloud. The other kit we kept in half-assembled 
state for people to check out. We had a *lot* of people who were interested, 
we certainly sold many of the existing Pi Drive kits (you can already get 
them, without ownCloud though, from the WD store) while many others will wait 
for us to release the PiDrive with ownCloud. Maybe I'm very optimistic here 
but the excitement was so great I have the feeling we'll sell those 500 in no 

On a related note, the Western Digital team working on the Pi Drive/ownCloud 
project came by the booth for a chat, too. It was great to meet them and shake 
hands in real life!

# Booth visitors
So we talked to people at the booth. I must've talked to about 500 people, my 
throat is soar (and you all know I have plenty experience talking as I usually 
can't stop - so this is saying something). Some highlights from me (I'm hoping 
Matt will share some of his):

* talked to Ubuntu people about the Pi project, they love it and want to work 
with us on that and other things.
* Cory Doctorow came to our booth to tell us how much he loves what we do. 
Took pic of him with ownCloud poster, see twitter 
* A photography-loving couple came by our booth and they were super duper 
excited to hear about ownCloud. For them, a better way of sharing pictures, 
esp large amounts (dropbox ain't so good with the tens of gigabytes) was 
really interesting. The girl claimed that if you could see emoticons IRL she'd 
have hearts flying out of her head. Yeah, disturbingly geeky, but fun!
* talked to CEO of XO-ware. http://www.xoware.com/frequently-asked-questions/ 
- they found a way through the firewall of routers which involves an external 
server but no proxy-ing. They plan on open-sourcing their stuff next month, we 
should look into it for ownCloud Proxy and the Pi-Drive project.
* talked to Intel people about Minnowboard - intel Pi like board. Might be 
interesting for our Pi Drive project - at least it has USB 3, Sata, room for a 
MSATA card (!) and loads of ram. Of course, there is price but - let's see.
* Talked to the community manager from Digital Ocean, we'll do some promo 
together. He also asked if we could give feedback on their ownCloud setup/one-
click-install image. I've asked for a free login to check it out, I'll then 
ask around soon if anybody is interested in checking out what they have and 
giving them tips on improving it.
I'll also ask how many users they approximately have ;-)
* In the plane I bumped into a movie music composer (you can hear him in the 
latest X-men, for better or worse) who was completely happy once told about 
ownCloud - he's now shuffling gigabytes of music files with Dropbox but not too 
happy with it. We might become big in Hollywood ;-)

Talked to many, many more interesting, nice, sweet, peculiar people from all 
over but there's one last special thing I must share: I did not hear A SINGLE 
COMPLAINT. None. Nada. Zilch. Sure, people were happy to hear we're working on 
stuff like the upgrade process, but none of them complained. Maybe it was the 
sunny weather but I just think you're all doing a GREAT job, because that is 
what people told me ;-)

So a big THANK YOU relayed from SCALE14x. Hugs all around: *you all rock!*

# Talks
I gave two talks, one about ownCloud scalability and Raspberry Pi. That is a 
weird combination indeed, it was inspired by Joas' cool BananaPi Cluster 
project. I couldn't use that, though, as he hasn't made much progress and I 
myself didn't have time to experiment much either. Thus, instead, I talked 
about scalability, different Pi devices and the Western Digital project 
(again, lots of people excited about that).

The second talk was a longer version of the lightning talk I did at the 
conference. Clearly, that was compressed too much, this one worked out far 
better and people said they liked it a lot. Well, hey, if I insult you and yet 
you come ask for more, either I do something right or you do something wrong, 
right? ;-)

# more
I did also talk to some press people, spend sleepless nights due to jetlag and 
found decent Blueberry Pancakes. I miss good bread whenever I visit the US 
(and UK) but pancakes, oh boy, THAT they do right like nobody... Hmmmm.

Of course I had fun dancing the security theater at the airports I went 
through, with some special fun at Gatwick (where I'm waiting to resume my trip 
atm). Going through a very comprehensive security check right after stepping 
off your plane from Los Angelos seems... beyond useless. And all those 
comprehensive checks didn't notice there's a typo in my name on the tickets. 
Ahum. I'd probably be stuck here if they really read my email AND had the 
resources to actually do something with it - but we all know that they rather 
throw more hay on the stack than spend time finding the needle so I feel quite 
safe sending this email.

Well, that's it, if you read through all of it to this point I tip my hat to 
you for your commendable stamina enduring my writing. If you want that hat tip 
on camera, look me up on FOSDEM and we'll take a pic with me tipping my hat to 
you :P

Take care!
Everything I do and say is based on my view of the world today. I am not 
responsible for changes in the world, nor my view on it. Everything I say is 
meant in a positive and friendly way, unless explicitly stated otherwise.
find me on blog.jospoortvliet.com
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