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SubjectRe: [Ksummit-2006-discuss] 2007 Linux Kernel Summit
On Fri, Jan 26, 2007 at 06:16:13AM +0530, Sunil Naidu wrote:
> Good thoughts ;-) I too believe in this - Where there is a Will,
> there is a Way! That's the reason why I have proposed India as the
> location for KS 2007, am still awaiting for the response from Theodore
> Tso.

I did give you a response. Find a way to pay for 80+ kernel summit
invitees to travel to India (preferably in business class :-), and
we'll talk. That's not realistic? Well, then perhaps having the
concept of holding Kernel Summit in India is not realistic.

As Dirk has pointed out, the Kernel Summit is a little unusual
compared to events such as FOSDEM or FISL, where there are 4000-5000
attendees, and the emphasis is on the power of a large number of
people in the OSS community. The Kernel Summit is a very different
event, in that it is by-invitation with less than 100 people. The
whole point is to get the top contributors together to be able to talk
amongst themselves in a high bandwidth environment. You can't do that
amongst a crowd of 800, never mind 2000 or 4000.

So the only reason why any organization would be willing to pay so
that top contributors would come to some country like India would be
if to attract visibility and excitement to some big conference or
other big OSS/Linux initiative that happened right after the kernel
summit. But quite frankly, I personally wouldn't consider it a wise
use of money; it would cost a heck of a lot of money and there are
plenty of other, more cost effective ways to promote a big OSS
conference in India.

And if there's no business case for the Indian government or some
local Indian companies to pay to fly all of the KS attendees to India,
why in the world do you think that companies like HP, Intel, IBM, Red
Hat, Novell, etc. will pay for their employees to travel to the Kernel
Summit? They don't have even less of the incentive than the local
Indian companies/government to do so! Maybe during the dot-com
madness of the late 1990's, when people spent money like crazy on
things that made no business sense whatsoever, but those days are long
gone. Money doesn't grow on trees any more, if it ever did.

The main reason why we are trying a one-year experiment in Cambridge
is because approximately 1/3rd of the KS attendees are from Europe.
At the moment I believe we have exactly one person from India, who has
been selected through her own merit, to attend the Kernel Summit. So
does it make sense to fly everyone else to India? It doesn't seem so
to me!

So the real answer to how do get the Kernel Summit to happen in India?
Bring a very large number of developers together in India. Get them
to work really hard, encourage them to participate on LKML, and
produce lots of useful patches. Eventually, some of them will do
enough good work that they will be recognized as maintainers of key
subsystems. When there are 25-30+ people from India who have done
enough for the Linux kernel community and risen to be recognized as
top contributors in the Linux world such that they are invited to the
Kernel Summit on their own merits, I'm sure there a Kernel Summit in
India would very quickly follow.

Still, if someone wants to pay a vast quantity of money to pay travel
for all so that the KS can be held in some exotic location (especially
if it's Waikiki beach, or Aspen Colorado during the skiing season),
I'm sure people will be willing to listen. But realistically, it just
doesn't make sense, so it's not likely someone would make us such an
offer. (Unless perhaps in some conspiracy theory scenario where
Microsoft pays $$$ to some VC company to sponsor an event in Moskow,
and then contracts out to the KGB to fill the meeting room with an
aerosolized powder of Polonium 210 to kill off all of the top Linux
developers in one fell swoop. But that sort of thing only happens in
spy novels. :-)


- Ted
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