Open Source Conference 2013

What to expect at OSCON 2013

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This year I get to go to OSCON for the first time ever! I’ve been on the library conference circuit for years, but this will be my first non-library con and I’m ready to learn as much as I possibly can in three days.

The conference is actually five days long, it starts with two days of tutorials (which I won’t be able to attend), but I plan on attending at least one session during every time slot during the next three days of sessions and keynotes. I went through the program and want to attend so many things (including things in the same time slot).

For now, I have added a wishlist of programs to my Google Calendar and I’ll have to pick and choose from there as the conference gets closer. See the complete list of sessions here (click on Agenda, in top right).

Among the most interesting sounding (to me) are:

  • Bringing More Women to Free and Open Source Software
    Wed, July 24, 11:30pm – 12:10pm
    Presented by Karen Sandler (GNOME Foundation). Many have speculated about why there are so few women in free and open source software. GNOME, in its Outreach Program for Women, addresses many of these issues with impressive success at attracting and then retaining talented women. Ten other organizations have now joined the OPW. In this talk, Karen will discuss why the program is necessary and why it has been so successful.
  • Collaborative Teaching for More Effective Learning
    Wed, July 24, 1:40pm – 2:20pm
    Presented by Brent Beer (GitHub). Everyone wins when everyone is smarter, so why is it so difficult to share and collaborate on teaching materials? Attend this session to see how having your courseware and other teaching materials stored in Git and on GitHub allows students to stay in touch, learn collaboratively, extract more knowledge, and potentially even give back to the course materials.
  • Creating a User Journey for Your Open Source Community
    Thu, July 25, 2:30pm – 3:10pm
    Presented by Francesca Krihely (10gen). In this session, we will go through how to design a community path to increase user involvement over time. Much of this will go through how to initiate early user engagement through a value proposition and build on that momentum over time. By creating a strong value proposition, in turn you create opportunity and access for your users and build a stronger, more vibrant community.
  • Coulda Been a Contributor: Making a difference through open source software
    Fri, July 26, 10:00pm – 11:40pm
    Presented by Vanessa Hurst (CodeMontage). Last year in CNNMoney’s Best Jobs for Fast Growth, software jobs were 7 of the top 20, but averaged a "C" for benefit to society. We’re calling BS.

If you plan on attending and want to meet up or want to point me in the right direction as to how to tackle such an awesome program and conference feel free to drop me a line or comment here! is an OSCON media sponsor. Save 20% on registration with code OPSR.


About the author

Nicole C. Baratta - Nicole C. Baratta (Engard) is a Content Strategist at Red Hat. She received her MLIS from Drexel University and her BA from Juniata College. Nicole volunteers as the Director of ChickTech Austin. Nicole is known for many different publications including her books “Library Mashups", "More Library Mashups", and "Practical Open Source Software for Libraries". Nicole can be reached at