posted by Nicholas Blachford on Fri 1st Aug 2003 18:14 UTC

"LinuxTag Show Report, Page II"
Other orgs
There were also some other orgs any open sorcerer would know.

FSF Europe also had a stand complete with a very funny poster with the GNU and a Penguin flying in a super-hero style (apparently based on quite an old image but I'd never seen it before).

MySQL had a small stand where they no doubt people queried them using a structured language.

PHP had a few stands labelled "PHP and friends" one of who did hosting with PHP.

Something slightly more fishy was also present in the form of the language Pike.

Some decidedly non-Linux organisations were also present not least in the form of the BSDs who were sharing a stand. Wim Vandeputte of OpenBSD was showing a small 486 "communications computer" which can be used for packet filtering and the like.

KDE, Gnome and were also present showing off eye candy for those who wanted to see something sweet.

Racks were out in force on a number of stands, not surprising given Linux's main claim to fame as a server OS. SAP and HP both had big racks which attracted a steady stream of geeks but there were rack mount servers at different stands some of which you could see into. One company specialising in linux security had a very colourful rack which almost looked like some of the gear you might find in recording studios. Apple also had a rack of X-Serves and of course being from Apple it looked cooler than the other racks.

There were various other companies selling products and services though many were German and I didn't know them.

There were also a smattering of stands where you buy various other goodies such as printer cartridge refills, magazines, clothes and books (including every geeks favourite: O'Reilly).

One product most people probably weren't even aware of was our Pegasos. Unfortunately we found out about the show too late to get a proper stand but one was on show thanks to to the Debian guys, it was running Debian PPC for the most part but at one point even it was taken over for coding...A Knoppix live CD should be working soon. One of my duties is to assist those porting different Operating Systems to the Pegasos hence my presence at the show.

Another company also without a stand was YellowTab who are currently developing Zeta (think BeOS R6). They also only found about the show at the last minute and came along to have a look, I had a very interesting chat with Bernd about things. A lot of people have been waiting a long time for Zeta and it looks like it will be well worth the wait, more so than some might think.

That was the business side but there were also quite a number of other stands which seemed to be much more in the ".org" category.

The Linux porters had a whole heap of machines mainly consisting of what were once horribly expensive workstations from SGI, HP and DEC but there was other stuff such as an Amiga 1200, various ARM and PowerPC development boards, a Sega Dreamcast and a phone - yes, someone has Linux running on a phone!

Linux Audio Developers had a stand with a very nice touch - there were a series of small pictures of each program and a description around the stand on the wall. This gave an impression of the wide variety of linux audio programs now available and the standards they adhere to, this is getting on well considering that Linux was once very weak for audio unless you wanted to perform surgery on our own brain using C-sound. Being an audio stand they had various audio programs running and making noise, they had virtual synthesisers running but also had some of the real thing. At the end of each day you'd hear music emanating from their stand.

On one stand there was a machine which had a small magnetic grabber suspended by wires of some form. It was suspended above a metal plate which was covered in holes into which were placed metal balls. The grabber would sweep down and pick up a ball and drop it elsewhere, an animation showed where the different layouts the balls were being moved to and from. I didn't enquire as to what the point of all this was but they were showing a small CPU they'd made in an FPGA which ran forth.

A small stand had a selection of linux games to try out and among other things an iMac to try them on.

For games of a different kind the X-Box linux hackers group had a stand complete with stripped X-box for you to see it's internals.

For refuelling there were a few food places in both the exhibition and congress halls but I preferred the Bockwurst and Pils in the sun outside.

For real geek refuelling however there is only one thing that can do: caffeine. There was a permanently busy refuelling stop selling the extra caffeinated Jolt cola.

All in all the show seem to go pretty well and was especially busy on Saturday. The types of visitors was surprisingly wide, they were mostly normal geeks (identifiable by the umpteen geek T-Shirts) but there were business men, families and a surprisingly high number of girls for a computer show, as well as plenty of couples.

Girls with guys into Linux? Beats me... must be a German thing.

A rather surprising pair of visitors were from the church. Is God considering going open source? I guess he beat us to it... we can after all read our own DNA "source code" these days.

Table of contents
  1. "LinuxTag Show Report, Page I"
  2. "LinuxTag Show Report, Page II"
  3. "LinuxTag Show Report, Page III"
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