Thursday, October 28, 2004

osxcon wrap-up

Lenn Pryor

osxcon day three
What a day! Andy Hertzfeld's session started the morning and it was great! He started off talking about his new book "Revolution in the Valley" about the early days of the Macintosh and the team that developed it. He told stories about Jobs and Woz that were hilarious. Many of the stories in the book are taken from the site, but some are new. The stories I enjoyed the most were about Woz's love of pulling pranks. He has an amazing memory for detail and the book looks great! It will be a must buy!

Columnist and Author David Pogue spoke next and he was also very entertaining! He spoke about software design and the problems some software has with poor and inconsistant interface. He also spoke about the software paradox where supposedly great software is upgraded with new features on 18-24 month cycles. My favorite Pogue quote is, "If you upgrade good software often enough you will ruin it." This drew applause from the crowd. He used the term "software rage" when he spoke about the frustrations user have dealing with poor software. Pogue said, "what incentive do software vendors have to make software good if they are being paid $50 for each service call."

After that I saw two good presentations in the Systems Administrators track. The first was by Allan Marcus of Los Alamos National Lab. It is hard to imagine the security issues they are dealing with. The next was an in-depth explanation of Darwin by John McDermon. This was hard core UNIX programmer stuff.

I got a chance to speak with Publicist Suzanne Axtell of O'Reilly at lunch about book publishing. She was very nice and gave me some great pointers. I enjoyed talking about publishing following the book that Sue wrote and I laid out.

After lunch it was back to more Sys Admin talk and a great talk by Australian Steven Doyle of Edith Cowan University of Perth about how they admin their 600 Macs. Again, more inspiring information about administering Macs in a higher education environment.

The last session of the day was my favorite. Lenn Pryor, of (he was there on his won time and own dime, but he also works on the Microsoft Channel Nine Project!) spoke about Podcasting! I am totally excited about his technology and think it has some great possibilities for distance learning, I was even interviewed by KCBS on the subject. This is very exciting new emerging technology. Please follow my links if you are even a little curious.

osxcon day two (epilogue)
Late yesterday afternoon I saw two other sessions. The first was on Mac maintenance. The second was a very cool presentation by Dori Smith on Bluetooth. I bought her book on Mac OS X Unwired. I was especially excited to learn she also has a cat named Pixel (like we do.) She is a good speaker and really knew her material!


Dori said...

I'm glad to hear you liked the talk, and thanks for the compliments!

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the nice comment about Allan's talk, but I was the guy introducing Allan at the talk from Los Alamos -- not the guy talking about Darwin. The presenter in the Darwin talk was Kevin van Vechten from Apple. There was a typo in the daily sheet for day 3.

John McDermon