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Re: [Debconf-team] [DC14] Portland team: questions after reading the bid

On 03/20/2013 10:01 PM, Steve Langasek wrote:
> On Tue, Mar 19, 2013 at 11:12:30PM +0100, Ana Guerrero wrote:
>> * Backup plan
>> Imagine a bad scenario, where we don't decide until mid-April and the
>> University is not available any more.  What is your backup plan?  Or what
>> are the possibilities that you would look at?
> We are early enough in the university's planning calendar that I do not
> expect a decision in April to cause a problem for the university's
> availability.  We have a tentative hold on the accomodation space until the
> end of April, which is the hardest piece of the puzzle - even if we have to
> go with a different on-campus venue than the memorial union, or have to
> change dates, we should still be able to have the conference at PSU even in
> the "fallback" case.
> If the decision actually goes so late that we lose PSU as an option, things
> become much more expensive rather quickly.  Portland has played host to many
> Free Software conferences over the years and there are many hotels in the
> Portland area that are equipped to handle high-tech conferences (including
> the University Place and the Marriott Downtown Waterfront), but none of
> these are going to be a match for the university in terms of its favorable
> pricing and technical capacity.  If it comes to that, the team should give
> serious reconsideration to Venezuela as the venue instead, as such a delay
> is likely to wipe out any advantage Portland might have over Puerto La Cruz.
> On a personal note, I think a late venue decision would result in so much
> added work/stress on the local team to attempt to secure an alternative
> venue (and a poorer alternative at that), that I would be disinclined to
> pursue these alternatives even if that was the DebConf committee's
> preference.  However, other members of the local team feel differently, so I
> have been dissuaded from representing this as the bid team's position.

I'm among those who aren't stressed about switching to another venue,
partly because I ran conferences in Portland for so many years that I'm
comfortable with any of the many wonderful venues in Portland. But also,
PSU is eager to have us, and I'm confident that they'd find some way to
accommodate us even if the decision came down as late as December, for
some bizarre reason. We might not get the exact rooms we want or the
exact weeks we want, but they'd find a way.

But, it's worth repeating Steve's point, which is that the Portland bid
team can control many factors, but entirely can't control the speed of
the location decision. It's not really our fault if the committee delays
the decision for 6 months or something, and we lose PSU as an option, so
the venue price doubles or triples. I mean, hey, it happens, we'd live
and still have a great conference. It'd just be a missed opportunity.


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