I like wikipedia’s definition of a barcamp:
BarCamp is an international network of user generated conferences — open, participatory workshop-events, whose content is provided by participants — often focusing on early-stage web applications, and related open source technologies, social protocols, and open data formats.
The definition focuses on openess and participation, and shows how a BarCamp is different from DemoCamps, StartupCamps or any other technology events.
I was coordinating the registration, welcoming attendees at the door by providing name tags, T-Shirts for those who registered on the wiki, and show them around the SAT. Compared to BarCampMontreal2, participants from Ottawa, Trois-Rivières, Toronto were expected, so we had to make sure everything went smooth.
Callum telling stories to Yan Levasseur
Arash Tchoupani, Denis Canuel, and Christopher Murtagh on the registration booth
Matt Forsythe and Erik Wright
Presentations were planned to start at only 10.00 am; so barcampers used to opportunity to network, blog or just take a coffee and a bagel.
Ian Rae, Jean Fahmy, and Daniel Drouet
Scott Annan blogging for Startup Ottawa
Around 10 am, everyone gathered at the presentations area, where chairs were placed following a “U pattern”. Aleece Germano was our mc for the day, although Simon Law also had his fair share of the mic. Like RococoCamp, the program was shown on an Open Grid format, which means you could just announce at the last minute a Birds of a Feather session.
Hugh McGuire, Aleece Germano and Simon Law
Aleece Germano, Simon Law, and Callum
The first presentation was Hugh McGuire’s How Data can save the world. We had afterwards Avery Pennarun, who now hacks software for banks. It’s noteworthy that it was the only desktop software showcased at BarCamp, while everyone else had “web applications” on their lips. Next were the jetfire guys, who made a demo of their new scripting language. However, I didn’t get what was the true strength of their technology.
Laurent Maisonnave from ca.intruders.tv
Dan Simard and Francois Lamontagne
CakeMail sends, manages and studies email campaigns. Francois Lane presented CakeMail’s API and layered system, and did an interactive demo at the end, asking people who had laptops to participate. I also saw they perfected the used interface; which I’ll probably cover in a separate post.
We had next lunch. I did a BOF for Blitzweekend, although it was in the middle of the SAT, which wasn’t very smart because of the noise.
Barcampers from Ottawa and Toronto
Duncan Moore and Veronique Boisjoly
Just after the lunch, we had Francois Pinard and then Louis-Philippe Huberdeau who did each lightning talks about LAMP and wiki translation.
We had next Sylvain Carle‘s presentation about startupping in Montreal, raising funds, and why Montreal is a great place to launch a startup. Attendees cheered up when hearing about his conclusion.
Marc Laporte was next, he is in the main core of developers for TikiWiki, a powerful wiki and CMS solution. He insisted that TikiWiki had many features and can be used for pretty much anything you want.
Afterwards, Denis Canuel presented YulNews, a social news project where everyone can report news and become an editor. Ultra-focused topics can be created in YulNews: you can for instance create a channel news about your street; or news that really matter to you.
Denis Canuel is currently looking for beta-testers and more people for his project.
Marc Laporte, and Sylvain Carle about ninjas
Pierre Phaneuf was next, and talked about HTTP issues. http is often overlooked by web developers, and he presented how it can be used for caching and optimizing content delivery, by tweaking headers.
Denis Canuel and Aleece Germano
Erick Wright and David Lemieux from StickyCal
We then had a lightning talk about coradiant, a web analytics software, which can produce very detailed reports about your website’s visitors and their behaviours. coradiant can also analyze files delivery and loading times.
Austin Hill made afterwards a session about angel investors in Canada, and especially on how to get funded.
Scott Annan with a blank screen
Austin Hill from Akoha; he is also an angel investor.
Austin Hill has been on both sides of technology funding; he gave detailed, precise, and relevant advice, backed by years of experience. This was one of the rare moments where the room was silent and I could see that everyone was listening to his talk.
Robin Millette presented his map of territories in Québec who have access to high-speed internet. He used 411 to get a database of 30.000 businesses and pinged them to see if DSL service was possible. The project was started because he moved from Montréal to the countryside. A bright idea, I especially liked the graphics and how it’s possible to zoom in. Robin is looking now for a place to host his database.
The guys from BOK were there too. BOK is a voip startup for people who want to do overseas or interurban phone calls. They presented the service as an easy way to phone for free; although I think it’s still somehow clumsy to use their service.
You can see pictures from the live Karaoke. Julie Lavoie seemed to have something against money, while Laurent Duperval had a lot of mojo. This was fun!
Simon Law, Hamish MacPherson, Julie Lavoie, Aleece Germano
Félix Trépanier presented his notes from the Business of Software conference. I wished he also presented his own opinions about each speaker.
Bernd Haug presented next the Dirvish filesystem, which can be used to backup your filesystems on the network, which is very similar in principle to Leopard’s new feature, Time Machine.
We had next George Favvas, founder of smarthippo.com He said that while web2.0 is well known for the changes in media, music, travel etc, it hasn’t yet reached finance. SmartHippo allows its users to get the true information about mortgage companies, as the rates are posted by the community, going beyond teaser rates and marketing talk.
He had a fun video about how these companies withhold information and have different offers and products according to each customer.
Bernd Haug who has steampunk art as a background picture
Morgan Tocker, Geroges Favvas