On October 26, like every year since 2001, Italy celebrated Linux Day.
Linux Day is an Italian event promoted by the Italian Linux Society and locally organized by many LUGs and associations in a lot of cities all around the country. It could be considered the main Italian FLOSS event organized by non commercial entities, and community-driven by many passionate volunteers. The fact that it is held in many cities instead of organizing a big event in a single place, it is a way to facilitate the approach of people to local Linux/FLOSS communities, then also many students, people with limited time and resources and also just merely curious citizens have the possibility to get in touch with the FLOSS universe and know people that animate such world.
Sadly, in the last years we are looking at a slow decrease of cities where Linux Day events are organized. Last year there were 77 events (92 in 2015 and 135 in the 2010 edition, just to give an idea), while this year there were 58 events. Although, it’s worth noting that some cities and communities joined forces in one single place. But unfortunately such decrease is perfectly in line with the current status of many FLOSS communities: it is so hard to find new passionate contributors. There are some proposals to change the style of the Linux Day, and transform it in many regional events in order to join forces and ideas where needed. We will see how it will go.
This year there were Fedora representatives in four cities: Bari, Ivrea and Pisa. Linux Day in Catania was postponed due to a weather alert that was disastrous in some places of Sicily. However it took place on November 23.
In Ivrea there was a talk hosted by dariolesca. In Bari there was a talk (and much more!) hosted by corsaro. In Pisa there was a booth managed by alciregi, and lewis41.
Some words from Bari
by corsaro. In Bari the Linux Day was so an unexpected and a exciting success, that we decided to write a dedicated report you can find in the Community Blog post Linux Day 2019 @ Bari: A Retrospective.
Some words from Pisa
by alciregi. The Linux Day in Pisa was organized by GULP (LUG of Pisa) in collaboration with GDG Pisa and L.U.Ma.Ca. (LUG of Massa Carrara). It was held in the Engineering Department of the University, and as always the attendees were mainly (but not only) university students and professors. There were at least a hundred people attending the 15 talks held from the morning until the evening.
Talking with the organizers the feel is that, compared to some years ago, the main interests of the attendees as well as the hosts is no more the Linux operating system/distribution per se, but applications: in the sense of ”what you can do with a computer” and in the sense of ”software applications” (and their development) as well. So Linux distributions lose a bit of interest (at least between high school and university students), and what seems more important nowadays is what you can physically do with a system (Raspberry Pi projects, Arduino and makers world, 3D printing, IoT, robotics, etc.) and software applications. Indeed you can find the same open source software (or web applications) or you can achieve what you want (from development to entertainment) on Linux as well on other platforms (mainly mobile systems). Who care about the platform?
And after all any modern Linux distribution just exists and just works.
So the conclusion is that the main reason to convince someone to install Linux on his PC in place of the pre-installed system could be some ethical motivation or the opportunity to contribute joining the community that let a distribution to exist.
Fun fact: at the booth, a youth refused to get a Fedora pin because he didn’t want to risk that his non technical friends ask him why he had the logo of [a very popular social network] on his backpack. I never thought this would really happen. I thought it was more a urban myth 🙂
I contacted an old and no more active Fedora contributor (lewis41). Such encounter lead him to rediscover the interest in contributing to the project, so I hope to see him active again in some Italian communication channel!
Some words from Ivrea
by dariolesca. The Linux Day in Ivrea was organized by IvLUG. In the morning, as well in the afternoon sessions there were about 50 attendees. The various talks were interesting and people followed them attentively. At the end of each talk there was a Q&A session with enthusiastic debates.
We had a booth set up at the entrance where we gave away Fedora swag and the stuff provided by ILS. The attendees have been delighted with the initiative.
The topic of most of the talks was related to ethics, knowledge and digital freedom in the field of Artificial Intelligence and robotics.
On the whole we were pretty satisfied with the flow of visitors (in line with the previous editions).
Some words from Catania
by giupardep. As said before, due to a weather alert, Catania Linux Day was held one month after the official date. We obtained a positive outcome.
In the morning there was a high turnout of about 100 people (including high school students). The talks were appreciated by the attendees, they were followed with much attention, indeed there was a high interaction with the speakers.
At the entrance we set up a big table with Fedora gadgets (the people much appreciated them!).
In the afternoon there were about 50 people and we presented an overview of Red Hat, we especially focused on Fedora (where you can download Fedora, the Fedora Spins, etc.).
After the last talk, we organized an installation party. Fedora was the most installed Linux operating system! We created about 10 live USB sticks with Fedora.
The organizers and the attendees were very satisfied by this Linux Day.