Lounges at OSCON


Some time ago I got a mail from O'Reilly about OSCON, saying that the speaker registration / lounge will be at 16th floor. I think that's the top floor with the suites. I thought it was great. I was thinking that hopefully it'll be EMPTY and the big room that was the speakers lounge last year will be used as a general lounge area. (But alas, no - see below). The speakers lounge should be TINY. With "no talking!!" signs everywhere.

Yes, of course the lounge is great. Lounge areas are great. It's one of the best things about the conference. But having everyone with a speakers badge hide in the "speakers lounge" is just silly. And sad. Having a smaller room far away to be used as the speakers lounge is great. Next year just make it a regular hotel room!

But darn, I see on the convention map that last years speaker lounge is now being used as a session room. Are there more simultaneous sessions this year? I don't remember the exact layout from last year. Are all the small rooms downstairs still being used?

So still no big general lounge area ... Where are we supposed to hang out in between sessions exactly?

As a cool sidenote: This year all the presentation boxes are OS X (powermacs or powerbooks) rather than dual-boot Linux/Windows things. Go Apple!


I dunno. I've got to admit that I prefer a large speakers lounge at OSCON--not because I spend less time at the conference because of it, but because I usually spend more time at the conference. Like a lot of speakers, I don't find that much of OSCON interesting. (This year there are all of three sessions that I want to go to, one of which conflicts with my talk) Not that it's bad content, since it isn't. The content's good. It's just either stuff I already know about, or stuff I don't care about.

Yeah, it's kind of elitist to hang out in the speakers lounge rather than mingle out on the conference floor, but the alternative to hanging out in the speaker's lounge is to hang out at OMSI, Powell's, or the riverfront park. At least at the speakers lounge you talk with other folks at the conference, and it's easy to wander through the conference floors themselves if you want.

It is, unfortunately, a balancing act for the conference folks. If the speaker stuff is nice the speakers rarely hit the floor, and you get a feeling of "those darned elitist folks hanging out together". If the speaker stuff isn't nice, then you get a lot more speakers who either don't do the conference at all since there's no real draw for them, or who fly in, do their talk, then leave again and basically aren't at the conference at all.

I'm with Dan on this one. If I was paying for OSCON, I'd have stopped going a few years back. I got now because I speak. I typically find only 3-4 sessions that I really want to attend and for similar reasons.

There's always the lobby of the hotel, although I imagine that's not really the same kind of space as the previous year's speaker's lounge (I wasn't a speaker last year, so I wouldn't know for sure).

I stopped in the speaker's lounge a few times last year but didn't find it terribly rewarding. If there isn't a gripping session at a particular time I can usually find one that either is a bit of review or something completely unrelated to my interests but worth attending just to see something different. In these kinds of sessions I do tend to spend more time looking at the laptop than at the speaker. There are also times where an excursion outside is too tempting and I vanish.

After seeing the "lounge" I'm not sure anyone is going to be hanging out there. Looked to me like there was a room for a total of 4 people around a small table. I went up there at 5pm, can't see any reason why I'd go back up.

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This page contains a single entry by Ask Bjørn Hansen published on July 20, 2004 2:28 AM.

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