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Re: [Debconf-team] A proposal about scheduling for DC14

Hello world, 

Jonathan McDowell dijo [Sat, May 17, 2014 at 01:34:58PM -0700]:
> It doesn't look like we yet have a shape for how the days should be laid
> out over the conference. Steve put forward a strawman in
> http://lists.debconf.org/lurker/message/20131001.175026.0a50b91b.en.html
> and AJ countered in:
> http://lists.debconf.org/lurker/message/20131002.135054.6fb41220.en.html

Great thing that you start driving this. Thanks!

> (...)
> I liked AJ's suggestion about a sort-of DebCamp after the day trip day
> but thought that perhaps we could mix some of the BOFs in with this. If
> we have a BOF session before + after lunch on each of these days it
> hopefully doesn't break flow of concentration too much (assuming you'd
> break for lunch anyway) and potentially provides a bit more focus for
> hacking in terms of providing time near the BOF to go off and work on
> stuff related to it.

I understand and also like somewhat AJ's idea and your implementation,
but I'd like to make a few "buts" here and there.

> Fri, August 22:		Arrival day. Dorm check in available after noon.
> 			Minimal hacklabs. No talks.
> Sat, August 23:		First day of conference. Opening immediately after
> 			brunch. Slots for 4 talks afterwards (inc DPL).
> Sun, August 24:		Full day of talks; start post brunch,
> 			15 slots.

Hmm... I would assume most people travelling from far will travel
during the weekend, as taking time off work is better explained when
it is constrained to a week. This might be related to the fact that
it's what I will be doing — And my travel is among the shortest for
the international attendees.  I would use Saturday as a soft-day, that
is, a hack day + BoF day for people that already arrived, but a buffer
day for the rest. Yes, we often have an arrival day marked as such,
but have people dripping in during all of DebCamp... So I think having
a soft day at the beginning would be more suited to what we have come
to expect.

At least, what I have come to expect. But, of course, I'm trying not
to make this day about myself (and rather, make it about the whole

Right, you set Saturday as a day with four talks only... But I would
push "strong" talks, such as the DPL's to Sunday.

> Mon, August 25:		Full day of talks. 18 slots.
> Tue, August 26:		Full day of talks. 18 slots.
> Wed, August 27:		Day trip
> Thu, August 28:		Hack day. BOFs either side of lunch (6 slots).
> Fri, August 29:		Hack day. BOFs either side of lunch (6 slots).
> Sat, August 30:		Hack day. BOFs post brunch (3 slots).
> Sun, August 31:		Last day of conference. Post brunch lightning
> 			talks (1hr30?), closing plenary, done by 4pm.
> 			Hacklabs open.
> Mon, September 1:	Leaving day. No hacklabs, leave rooms by noon.

...And what I don't really feel comfortable here is with the lack of
balance. If we have the rooms available, of course, people will
request ad-hoc sessions, so I doubt we would _really_ use only 6
slots. We would most probably use over 15, as history has shown when
we have an empty room.

Having the 18 slots on three rooms during Sun/Mon/Tue would put much
more pressure not only on the video team (they would be covering three
and not just two rooms), but on attendees. Having to choose among
*all* of our selected talks over three days can lead to insatisfaction
with the overall program.

> I think the important people who need to say that this works for them
> are the talks and video teams. Getting a quick agreement on this will
> help those trying to get their tickets booked; I will assume if I don't
> hear anything in the next week that this works for everyone.

Well... I understand AJ's point, but I think that finding hacking
time/space will rather be a personal issue. And having a day of
hacking interrupted by one or two very good talks you don't want to
miss... well, it is not as disruptive as following the whole day.

It's not a strong opinion... but I'm not that thrilled with the
proposed time. It might lead to many people just sticking around
until Tuesday and then going, as there's nothing "interesting"
programmed anymore. And if we decided to sacrifice DebCamp this time,
I don't think it should be made in prejudice of the conference time
proper. Yes, seven days of talks might be a bit too much, but a strict
three day-three day separation is also harsh. I'd do the
differentiation softer, or alternate between the hack and talk days.

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