As always, the KDE Team participated in this year's LinuxTag which took place in Karlsruhe, Germany. LinuxTag is a platform for Free Software projects and Linux related companies with an exhibition area and a wide range of talks. With more than 19,500 visitors, this year's LinuxTag has become the largest Linux event in the world. Even away from the KDE booth, there was a lot of KDE
stuff to see. (Update: Pictures of KDE/GNOME dinner added.)
As usual, the KDE booth in the exhibition area was crowded. There, both KDE 3.1 and CVS HEAD were shown on four machines. As a special feature, KDE was shown on an Opteron which was made available by AMD. There were almost no problems getting it to compile, and it worked great. Many people dropped by to see the latest developments and were fascinated by the whole range of promising new features and applications such as Kontact, KDE's future Groupware suite and Kexi, a database management system for office users. Many users also used the opportunity to talk directly to the developers in order to provide feedback and suggestions. KDE developers used the hacking area to jointly develop new ideas and hack on KDE.
There was a lot of socialization. A lot of new project participants had a chance to meet some of the other developers. LinuxTag's Social Event on Friday was big fun this time and a good opportunity to talk (and have a beer!) with members of other projects or companies.
Thursday night, KDE and Debian guys had dinner together. On Saturday, Gnome and Debian folks joined us for a dinner organized by KDE's Ralf Nolden. All those events were really enjoyed by the participants. Yet that did of course not stop people from unpacking their laptops at some point and starting to hack. It's a passion.
At the booth of the German Federal Office for Information Security (BSI), Intevation and the KDE PIM developers Ingo Klöcker, Marc Mutz, Tobias König and Daniel Molkentin presented Kolab which had its first official release there. Again, the feedback from the visitors, among them a lot of IT decision makers from companies and government agencies was very positive. So expect Kolab to hit your desktop at work very soon! Credativ showed a KDE desktop on Debian basis, also running Kolab. The "Office Productivity Booth" demo'ed KDE's printing capabilities in action.
A lot of KDE related talks took place at the conference area. In his speech, Ralf Nolden presented KDE and gave an overview of new features in KDE 3.2. Bo Thorsen, who was kindly assisted by Martin Konold, gave a talk on Kolab which was very well received. Bernhard Reiter from the FSF Europe reported on his experience with Kroupware and Ägypten. Andreas Brand from the University of Frankfurt gave an interesting overview of KDE's social structure which he analyzed by studying the community and conducting interviews at the last LinuxTag. David Faure presented the power of Valgrind and KCacheGrind in his talk about effective software debugging.
We found many companies running KDE, among them giants such as HP and SAP. At the booth of Ark Linux, KDE hacker Bernhard "Bero" Rosenkränzer demonstrated a Linux distribution with impressive seamless integration of system management tools within KDE as well as an OpenH323
based video conferencing software for KDE based on GnomeMeeting.
LinuxTag once again proved to be a very good platform for a mix of hacker gathering and representation with a unique atmosphere. We all look forward to meet you at LinuxTag 2004!
The inevitable photo series: