Monday, 23 February 2009

Australian Icons for FOSS are all the rage

Is Ubuntu is following the FOSS4G trend to use Australian icons when selecting the cute "Karmic Koala" as their mascot for Ubuntu release 9.10?
This follows the wombat for the Arramagong Live DVD, (based on Xubuntu), and the famour Opera house outline for the FOSS4G conference ribbon logo.

Monday, 2 February 2009

FOSS4G call for Workshops and Tutorials

Sydney, Australia. 2 February 2009.

The Free and Open Source Software for Geospatial (FOSS4G) conference is pleased to announce a Call for Workshops and Tutorials for the 2009 conference, being held 20-23 October, 2009 in Sydney, Australia.

FOSS4G is the international "gathering of tribes" for open source geospatial communities. The theme for the FOSS4G 2009 conference will be "User Driven". Users and developers are encouraged present their latest projects and software to demonstrate the power of Open Source for system integration through a series of workshop sessions and tutorial presentations. Session participants should expect to see presentations on both geospatial open source and propriety software integration along with pure open source solutions.


Workshops are expected to be a hands-on experience with participants following along with the instructor, working directly with the application under discussion. All workshop rooms will be equipped with computers (two students sharing one system) to support this vision. Workshop computers will pre-installed with a basic image containing standard packages running in a Windows XP environment. A projector will be provided for each computer room for use within a workshop. Instructors will need to discuss pre-installation requirements with the Conference Organising Committee if required.

Workshops are expected to require considerable effort to create, with past experience showing that three days of preparation per hour of presentation are required to produce a high quality workshop. Additionally you will be expected to develop material for attendees to take home with them, such as handouts, workbook, CD-ROMs etc. Due to the effort involved in producing and presenting a workshop, instructors will receive a single complementary registration to the conference for delivering a workshop.

All workshop submissions will be considered, but particular interest will be shown in the following topics:

  • Practical Introduction to ____
  • Integrating Open Source
  • Spatial Data Privacy and Security


Tutorial rooms will not be equipped with computers, however presenters may optionally make use of delegate laptops and the FOSS4G LiveDVD.

At least 80% of delegates are expected to be carrying a laptop and FOSS4G LiveDVDs will be given to all delegates.

Preference will be given to hands-on tutorials.

Any hands-on aspects to a tutorial will be the responsibility of the presenter and needs to be described in the tutorial description. Presenters making use of the Live DVD or Climate Change Integration Plugfest (CCIP) will be expected to contribute to testing pre-releases to ensure material and software is properly installed. To discuss your requirements for LiveDVD, please contact the organising committee:

All tutorial submissions will be considered, but particular interest will be shown in the following topics:

  • Practical introductions
  • Interoperability
  • Spatial data accuracy
  • Spatial data privacy
  • Spatial data security
  • System implementation
  • Data migration

Submission instructions and templates are available at and

The deadline for workshop / tutorial submissions is March 2, 2009.

FOSS4G 2009 Highlights

The Climate Change Integration Plugfest (CCIP): FOSS4G will launch the OGC's Climate Change Integration Plugfest (CCIP), which demonstrates standards based interoperability between Open Source and Proprietary geospatial applications. It consists of a server with multiple virtual machines, each installed with geospatial applications offering standards based web services. All web services will demonstrate a common dataset, and will be accessed by a range of geospatial client applications installed on client computers.

Presenters are encouraged (but not mandated) to make use of scenarios and on-site data from the Climate Change Integration Plugfest (CCIP). This is especially important as demand for access to data over the internet is expected to be high, and Australia has notoriously slow connections to the outside world.

FOSS4G Live DVD: LiveDVDs, based on the Xubuntu operating system and including Geospatial Open Source Software, will be given to all delegates. Users can boot a Live DVD on their computer and trial the software without installing or effecting the existing system.

Installfest: The Installfest will give delegates the opportunity to meet in a common area and install a wide variety of FOSS software on their laptops, EEPC or any other system they care to bring in. Community members will be around to assist with any troubles and provide help and insight into the software. The install fest will take place after workshops on the first day.

Workshops and Tutorials: Workshops and Tutorials allow presenters to lead attendees through applications, integration solutions, or other topics in an interactive environment. Half-day workshops (3 hours) will be held in computer rooms on the first day. Tutorials (90 minutes) will be held in standard presentation rooms, run concurrently with presentations during the third and fourth days.

Presentations: The meat of the conference are it's presentations. Drawing on a huge community of local, regional and international experts we will discuss some of the most current and poignant topics in the industry today.

Birds of a Feather: Rooms have been set aside for semi-organised meetings between like minded groups. Some prominant community initiatives started in prior FOSS4G Birds of a Feather sessions.

Code Sprint: The weekend after FOSS4G is reserved for the Hackers' Code Sprint. Hackers will be locked in a basement with lots of bandwidth, pizzas and coke. (Well, maybe something better than that, but we don't want to spoil the mystical hacker image by describing it any differently.)

Upcoming milestones

  • 2 Feb 2009, Call for Workshops/Tutorials opens
  • 2 Mar 2009, Call for Workshops/Tutorials closes
  • 9 Mar 2009, Call for Abstracts opens
  • 30 Mar 2009, Notification of acceptance for workshops/tutorials
  • 13 Apr 2009, Registration for conference and tutorials opens
  • 1 Jun 2009, Abstract submission deadline
  • 13 Jul 2009, Presenters notified of acceptance for talks
  • 31 Jul 2009, Author/Early registration deadline
  • 14 Sep 2009, Completed program available on the wiki
  • 20 Oct 2009, FOSS4G Workshop
  • 21-23 Oct 2009, FOSS4G Presentations and Tutorials
  • 24-25 Oct 2009, FOSS4G Code Sprint

For information about this announcement, contact:

FOSS4G Organising Committee:


Cameron Shorter, Chair of the FOSS4G Organising Committee and Geospatial Systems Architect at LISAsoft

tel +61-8570-5050

c a m e r o n . s h o r t e r @ l i s a s o f t . c o m