I'm about to head to the airport here in Brussels to start the journey back home to Canada, but before I check out of the hotel and pop onto the shuttle bus that marks the start of a long day of traveling fast while sitting down I wanted to quickly blog some thoughts that were rolling about my head.
Akademy was really good this year.
It was different than past Akademies in several ways. While we retained the technical focus and the excitement of seeing friends we hadn't seen for a year or more, there was also a new professionalism to be felt in certain sessions. There was also more big picture thinking and we were back to hard core technical issues. I loved listening to Till Adam talk about Akonadi in the taxi one morning with KDE and GNOME people alike about the technical challenges and the very sensible decisions the Akonadi team were making and why, not all of which were immediately obvious but which made extreme sense once explained. I wish Till blogged; it is my intention now to get him speaking more for the project in public though. (Till: you have been warned. You can run, but you can't hide. I am the gingerbread man. ;)
The t-shirts rocked.
As a sign of this general maturing of things, the shirts this year were great. They looked like something you might see a fashion conscious person wearing out to a decent restaurant under a sports jacket. The KDAB shirts were understated and sexy, the KDE Games shirt design was plain awesomeness. Lots of women's shirts were available and quite popular; at the thank you dinner we treated the local team to there were wives and girlfriends wearing them. We've come a long ways from just t-shirts to great looking and well done t-shirts. Our clothing seems to be tracking our general head space. =)
We're opening new worlds for ourselves .. and others.
The Nokia tablets are really just the beginning of this. This project is headed in numerous new directions, all of which we badly need to address and none of which are splitting our community into factions. Instead, we seem to be charting our usual same-direction-with-minimum-oversight paths but with a new kind of focus and intensity. The next couple years will see KDE explode on devices as well as desktops around the world, and not just Linux ones. From Edje to geographical information to non-Linux platforms to mobile to open standards to opening the economy around media ... there is so much to do and so much people are doing!
Thank you for the award.
I also wanted to say "Thank you" to everyone for the Akademy award that was bestowed in my direction at this Akademy. It was rather unexpected, and in no small way the rest of the Plasma team and the KDE contributors to marketing, media and organization have been responsible for the progress made that the award was given for. I thank all of you for making me a part of your team, and for being a part of mine. There are so many people in this project who deserve such a thank you as well, and next year when I'm a member of the jury I'll be sure to get some of those people up there on stage with a metal gear in their hands.
Belgium confuses me at times.
Finally, before I dash for the door, I have to say that belgium confuses me a bit. It's an odd mix of cultures and aptitudes (why are the waffles and chocolate so good, but the rest of the food so mediocre?), of attitudes and weather (holy rain and wind, batman!), of architecture (old a wonderful though very religious, but too many cobblestones) and industry (watchmaking is very, very cool). It'll take a while for me to digest this country in my mind, but I enjoyed my stay here. Perhaps I'll have the chance to return again.
Until I arrive home, au revoir!