Prepping for Southeast LinuxFest 2010

Update: Photos from this year’s SouthEast LinuxFest are up on my photography site, my Flickr page (Licensing on Flickr is cc-by-nd-sa) and Facebook page. Tag away! 🙂
It’s that time of the year again. The Southeast LinuxFest of 2009 was my first Linux Conference and I enjoyed the experience so I decided to repeat it. 🙂 Here’s the Southeast LinuxFest Flickr pool of photos taken by various attendees from the Southeast LinuxFest 2009 and here are the photos I took of Southeast LinuxFest 2009. This year’s Southeast LinuxFest is being held in South Carolina again (Spartanburg, SC) and the venue is the Spartanburg Marriott at Renaissance Park. There’s a discount for SELF attendees (~ $93 a night when I last guessed).

There’s also a Twitter account to follow for official Southeast LinuxFest news (SELinuxFest) and an official hashtag (#SELinuxFest. If you’re interesting in hitching a ride to Spartanburg SC, visit the Wiki for info on who’s carpooling and offering rides to those who need. Registration for SELF is free and you’re encouraged to purchase the Supporters’ package which costs $65 (and includes food on Saturday, a T-shirt and drink tickets) so if you’re interested in F/OSS, check the conference out! See you there. 🙂

In the meantime, see the photos from last year below and click through to the full set. I’ll take my trusty camera with me this year too so don’t forget to smile if you see me pointing my weapon at you. 🙂

Monetizing software and keeping your users

This post was inspired by the current (it’s dying down) kerfuffle generated over FeedDemon’s latest Release Candidate containing adverts. Now, I haven’t installed it or tried it out yet. However, I left a comment on Nick Bradbury’s blog about the issue that I’ll repost here:

“Has anyone considered Text Ads in FeedDemon? More than anything, it’s the notion of ads contaminating FeedDemon that gets my goat.I understand you need to survive. How about experimenting with a different area (less obtrusive although that might defeat the purpose of placing ads in FeedDemon to begin with) to put the adverts? I will go ahead and echo several commenters in saying that I would gladly pay a subscription fee for a robust NewsGator Online Service and/or FeedDemon development sans ads. My own love/hate affair with FeedDemon started back when it was a paid app. Lately, my own issues with it have been stability, but I’m sure you’re addressing that already so the issue of ads just added salt to my own wounds. Good luck deciding what to do, Nick and I think that after all is said and done, FeedDemon is truly a superior product and at the risk of ‘jinxing’ you, I’d say you could possibly get away with introducing ads to your product. The only thing you/developers need to keep doing is making the product faster, better, et cetera.”

I have switched to RSS Bandit although that switch hasn’t come without its minor issues. Anyhow, that’s just my 2 cents. Right now, I’m putting my money where my mouth is by ponying up ~$20 for the Weatherbug software because the free version comes with adverts. Yes, I’m one of those people who installs adblocking software on her browser, but my desktop is my sanctuary and I am intensely distrustful of software that’s running ads in the background while I’m using it. I won’t pretend to know much about the cost of maintaining & developing FeedDemon so it’ll be up to them to decide what to do. I am solidly in the “remove the ads” camp. In any event, I’ll make lemonade from what I have right now i.e. RSS Bandit. Now would be a great time to explore what other desktop feed readers are available. Here’s a short list of programs (feed aggregators) that I intend on testing out on my laptop (I’ll start with the ones that abide by the free & open source software [FOSS] principles). Oh, before I forget, check out this Wikipedia comparison of the various feed aggregators.