What to Expect at LinuxFest Northwest

In this interview, an event organizer offers a preview of what to expect at this weekend's free, open source-focused LFNW event.

John Blanford is just one of the many people who help organize LinuxFest Northwest, an annual open source event held in Bellingham, Washington. In this interview, Blanford offers a preview of what to expect at this weekend's LFNW event.

What's new this year at LFNW?

John Blanford: Ever since LinuxFest Northwest went to a two-day weekend format several years ago, we have had a party on Saturday night. This year we are holding the party at the Spark Museum of Electrical Invention in downtown Bellingham. The party is free for fest attendees and will include access to the museum. It should be fun.

Is there a particular theme that stands out this year?

John Blanford: Since our focus is so general — Linux and open source software — we get presentations on a wide range of topics. But based just on numbers, cloud computing stands out this year. We have at least nine presentations on cloud computing topics, including cloud overviews, talks about specific open source cloud platforms, and tools useful for maintaining cloud systems.

We also have quite a few talks about web development and security. These topics seem to be popular every year.

What can attendees expect as some of the highlights for LFNW 2012?

John Blanford: We have over 70 presentations over the two day fest, so it's hard to pick highlights. But here are some of my favorites:

Besides talks, we have a game den with open source games, and the Tutorium, a drop-in room for newbies to try out Linux and ask questions from experienced users.

On Saturday we will also have a robotics demonstration by the Bellingham Artificial Intelligence & Robotics Society, and a demonstration of beer brewing controlled by open source software.

What are the organizers most excited about for this year's event?

John Blanford: I would say the breadth of the presentations and the fact that the fest is still going strong after 12 years.

Thanks to John for the sneak preview. If you make it to LinuxFest Northwest 2012, I'll see you there!

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Copyright © 2012 IDG Communications, Inc.

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