I was debating this post most of the weekend – so I decided to set the egg timer at 20 minutes and run with it. Why show up at FOSS4GNA 2016? I’m saying “SHOW UP” and I know that’s not a good enough reason. Here are some statistics from the 2015 conference.
So you don’t want to show up because you’ve never been to one?
Almost 60% of the people there haven’t been to a FOSS4GNA event. 2015 was my second event.
I know what you’re thinking. I bet this thing is going to be full of those people – developers. I’m not going to understand half of what they are saying as they gulp down coffee and point excitedly at a half put together presentation they started 15 minutes before the presentation.
OK – so there are a lot of those people there – developers. Except – these good people are developing for you also. You can actually walk up to them and go “What were you thinking” and they will tell you. The one thing I was struck by in 2015 were the number of Government folk there – Open Source GIS just isn’t for Universities and Developers and people with weird itches to scratch. There were a lot of local government people from management down to technicians with GIS problems to fix and data to maintain. Probably the most interesting guy I met was a guy from LA County (county employee) who was going to use QGIS on a tablet for data display/collection. Another guy worked for San Francisco and he was throwing Geoserver on anything he could to decrease their reliance on ArcServer.
Are you alone at this thing? I consult and teach so I fell in the 13%. There are a ton of people there building commercial products. You’ve got the University people filling you about 16% of the group. I’m pretty sure a lot of Gov’t fell in the 17%. It’s a good mix of people. You are going to have a lot in common with most everyone there.
Finally as my egg timer is about to beep….
So I use FOSS4G in my consulting life. I’m using it almost 90% of the time these days if I have a geo problem to solve. If you skip to the last line – close to 10% of the the attendees don’t use it. They were there out of curiosity. I have several clients gleefully using it to maintain all their GIS data.
So show up. Come to Raleigh and look at the 10 workshops and close to 100 presentations on open source GIS.
oh and Thank you Eclipse Foundation for collecting this information….