Re: Conference Booth Organization

On Wed, Jul 16, 2003 at 09:29:46AM +1000 or thereabouts, Malcolm Tredinnick wrote:
> On Wed, 2003-07-16 at 02:49, Gregory Leblanc wrote:
> > Hi folks!  A few of us GNOMErs in Portland managed to put together a
> > booth for GNOME at OSCON.  We managed to talk to a lot of folks, and

Send hot pics! :) 

> > share some ideas about what GNOME is, and where it's going.  I think the
> > booth went pretty well in general, we even had a few 'celebrities' stop
> > by (Miguel, Jim Gettys, and Keith Packard, and so on).  However, there
> > were a bunch of things that we could have done a lot better, so I've
> > been trying to write them up, so that we can have an even more kick-ass
> > booth for the next conference (LWE SF, anyone?).  Here's a list, a bit
> > of explanation for most of the items, and one or two closing remarks.
> Somebody else wrote a couple of web pages of ideas after a London(?)
> conference where he was doing GNOME demonstrations a couple of years
> ago. For the life of me, I cannot find a reference to these pages now,
> but my memory of that list is pretty similar to what Greg has noted.
> Since two people have said it, it must be true.

Three people :) 

Three years ago I wrote up a "what we could have done with, had
we only known" thing on my return from LinuxTag2000 and sent it to 
gnome-hackers. Alas, the archives don't go back that far. I can't 
find my post on the web. But from my ancient sent-mail folder, 
here's a snippet. (Those who don't want to read loads: the 
executive summary is "wot Greg said")

Suggestions for anyone doing something similar in future:
        o Have people who can explain the technical stuff there. Definitely.
    Really useful.
        o Have CDs to sell/give away if at all possible. In Europe, "you
    can download it from the net" is not always a solution people like
    (unless you're in Scandinavia where everyone appears to have massive
    bandwidth) because of connectivity and bandwidth issues so it's
    doubly important there.
        o Have fliers of lists of resources. Really important. Things
    like gnotices, maybe, but also, locations of
    tutorials on GTK and Glade, how to check gnome-hello out of CVS,
    and where people can read and subscribe to development mailing lists.
    (Those are all things I remember explaining and wishing we had fliers
    for.) We didn't have fliers, but I suspect if we'd had them we'd have
    gone for user-aimed ones, and it was tutorial and docs locations we'd
    have needed.
        o Something cute and furry to sell :) I think we should have
    penguins and BSD daemons with large GNOME feet attached to them, but
    I'm weird :) Seriously, people were even asking for posters, and we
    needed those. (Several people remarked on the GUADEC posters and
    thought them supremely cool.) Squeaky rubber gnomes might work,
    especially after you have made someone giggle with the squeaky
    gnome easter egg in the control centre. I was amazed how much people
    liked that, even though we had no speakers and thus no squeak!
        o If you have posters of screenshots, make them less complicated
    than we did. Several people stared at them and just looked baffled.
    The ones we had were things like gnumeric-bonobo with about eight
    things inside, and although someone used to GNOME could go "oh, that's
    Dia, and look that must be a game embedded in, and..", but someone not
    used to it would not even be able to separate which windows were which.
    Actually, grabbing the ones of's screenshots or a similar
    idea would work: get a range from basic "what it looks like when
    started" to more complicated ones, but have captions to explain what's
    so cool about complicated ones.
        o Similarly, _don't_ pile all the apps onto one screen for demos!
    Use virtual screens, workspaces, shade unused windows, etc. People
    can focus on one thing at a time, then. I really think this is
    important. [some snips here] I know this sounds silly, but I did
    find people could get confused if you just opened a dozen things at
    them. A better solution is to get _them_ to use the mouse anyway :)
    Oh: one app I think is really cute to leave running, btw, is gtop,
    cos it has flashing lights and a changing display, so just looks
    impressive :) Blinkenlights!
        o Something to impress Windows people, or people who are new
    to X, which would be sweet: have a machine running latest stable
    stuff, have one with the development stuff on, and demonstrate the
    X thing of starting apps (or entire sessions) from a remote machine
    with the results on your window. People new to UNIX and X have _no
    idea_ that such things are possible: the networking aspects are
    a totally new concept to them and they are awed by this. This would
    take a little more setting up, I imagine, but it might be worth it.



(PS: that last one would suggest another for your booth kit: "ethernet" :))

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