Awesome Conferences

LISA 2004 Report: Monday

Today I spent the morning working on a presentation I'm making on Friday.

In the afternoon I attended Over the Edge System Administration, Volume 1 taught by David N. Blank-Edelman. The basis of the class was to each how to abuse the sysadmin tools that you already know. His first example was setting up a printqueue in lpr (the Unix print queue system) so that the files don't get sent to a printer, but get sent to your audio device. Now you can send MP3 files to this queue and they start playing one after the next. You can even use the usual lp* commands to re-arrange the play order. If you think that was an interesting abuse of a sysadmin tool, the examples only got better (or worse, depending on how you view it). It was a great tutorial. I learned a lot and was entertained. It added a lot of new tools to my mental toolbox. I hope they repeat this tutorial next year. David N. Blank-Edelman's tutorials always seem to be winners, watch this guy in the future.

Towards the end of the talk my boss contacted me by IM and asked if I could do a quick project for her while I was at the conference. I bring this up because a lot of people can't attend week-long conferences because their boss "can't live without them for a week." It is very comforting that LISA (and most conferences) have very good connectivity to the internet (I'm told four T1s this year) and excellent WiFi coverage. Not only is WiFi available in the workshop/presentation spaces, but also the "hang out" spaces where people congregate during the day and in the evenings. Yes, there is internet access in the hotel rooms ($9.99/night) but having it ubiquitously throughout the conference really makes a big difference. Tell your boss that!

Posted by Tom Limoncelli in Conferences

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