“Og­gcamp is not about cor­po­rate cul­ture, it’s ba­si­cally about en­thu­si­asm”

joe ress­ing­ton on maker pos­i­tiv­ity

Linux Format - - OG­GCAMP 2017 -

Joe Ress­ing­ton LXF:

Hi Joe, thanks for tak­ing the time to talk to us. Please can you tell the read­ers more about your­self. Joe Ress­ing­ton (JR): and I’m the host of and the co-host of LXF: JR: LXF: JR: LXF: JR: LXF: JR: Hi, I’m Joe Ress­ing­ton pod­cast, LateNightLinux Lin­uxAc­tionNews. So how long would you say you’ve been pod­cast­ing for?

I’ve been pod­cast­ing for around four to five years and I started out on pod­cast which was on the Mind­set net­work, a net­work which isn’t re­ally go­ing any­more.

The pod­cast was a mix of con­spir­acy the­o­ry­type stuff and tech­nol­ogy. I pre­sented the pod­cast with Gareth Davies, a Mac user and we bonded to­gether over our dis­like of Win­dows. We started the pod­cast just be­fore the Ed­ward Snow­den event and all of the con­spir­acy the­o­ries we had been talk­ing about came true! So we felt vin­di­cated! TheMindTech So your area of in­ter­est is in se­cu­rity?

No, I would say that I’m more in­ter­ested in Open Source Soft­ware re­ally. Open stan­dards and se­cu­rity work hand in hand. You can’t re­ally have proper se­cu­rity with­out open source or open stan­dards.

So is Linux a se­cure op­er­at­ing sys­tem? Re­cently there have been some Linux se­cu­rity is­sues hit­ting the head­lines: Dirty COW and the Bit­coin mal­ware for Linux, and MulDrop.14 for Rasp­berry Pi.

You’re al­ways go­ing to have Zero day ex­ploits be­cause of code churn, but I like to think that Linux is more se­cure than Win­dows or Mac, in­so­far as some­one can find the ex­ploits in Linux and fix them. Whereas you’re re­ly­ing on a closed source com­pany to fix ex­ploits and close back doors. So gov­ern­ment agen­cies may pos­sess back doors into Linux, but hope­fully they’ll be found and fixed by the com­mu­nity.

So here we are at Og­gcamp 17 in the lovely city of Can­ter­bury, but this isn’t your first Og­gcamp. How have you seen Og­gcamp evolve over the years?

If I re­mem­ber cor­rectly my first Og­gcamp was in 2011, in Farn­ham and I’ve only missed one event since then. I’ve seen the ap­peal of Og­gcamp be­come more se­lec­tive. It seems to be less pop­u­lar than it once was. It’s still a good event and the peo­ple who at­tend are re­ally cool, but there are just fewer peo­ple here than there have been in pre­vi­ous years and this is a trend that I’ve no­ticed.

Maybe this is be­cause there are now more maker events, and when Og­gcamp first started it was the only big event that was hap­pen­ing, whereas now there are a lot more events tak­ing place. I sup­pose the com­mu­nity has be­come “frac­tured” or spread out, but Og­gcamp is still a great event and I had a great time this week­end. LXF: Is there still a de­sire for Og­gcamp? JR:

There’s still a de­sire for Og­gcamp − peo­ple still want to come. Apart from any­thing else this is a so­cial event, giv­ing the com­mu­nity a chance to catch up. Granted, it’s good to talk on­line, but Og­gcamp gives us the chance to have a drink and a chat face to face.

For me the most im­por­tant as­pect of Og­gcamp is the “so­cial track”. Sure I can see lots of great talks − in fact I watched a great talk on Open Suse, and then had the chance to talk to the speaker about his project and other in­ter­ests in the pub af­ter­wards. LXF: Do you think what makes Og­gcamp dif­fer­ent to other tech­nol­ogy-fo­cused or cor­po­rate con­fer­ences is that it ad­dresses the com­mu­nity, rather than the tech­nol­ogy? JR: Yeah that’s def­i­nitely it. Og­gcamp is less cor­po­rate. Of course, there’s some net­work­ing go­ing on and peo­ple will be learn­ing new skills for their jobs, but at the same time there are talks go­ing on that cover per­sonal projects. You would never see that at a cor­po­rate con­fer­ence be­cause it has no cor­po­rate value. Og­gcamp is not about cor­po­rate cul­ture, it’s ba­si­cally about en­thu­si­asm. LXF: If you could change one thing about any Og­gcamp, ei­ther past or present, then what would it be? JR: The lo­ca­tion! So I can take the Tube there Joe Ress­ing­ton favours a Lon­don venue. and back and not pay for a ho­tel! It’s all “up in the air” but we may have found a suit­able venue in Lon­don, which would be great! More peo­ple com­ing would also be great. That said, it’s nice that it’s a small event and that you have the time to prop­erly catch up with peo­ple.

This year, I think Can­ter­bury put a few peo­ple off, es­pe­cially those com­ing from the north be­cause it’s quite a jour­ney. The venue, Can­ter­bury Christ Church Univer­sity has been great, and by of­fer­ing the event to Og­gcamp for free it’s saved the or­gan­is­ers thou­sands of pounds and many weeks of work, which means they can con­cen­trate on the event. LXF: So what has been your favourite part of Og­gcamp 2017? JR: I think that for me it was the con­ver­sa­tion that I had with Martin Wim­press (Ubuntu MATE Project Lead) and Richard Brown (Suse) in the pub last night. We talked about the new pack­ag­ing for­mat “Snap” and it be­came quite heated. I think that Snap is one of the big­gest de­vel­op­ments in Linux in re­cent years. LXF

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