london barcamp

Simon Cozens simon at
Wed May 10 00:52:25 BST 2006

Pedro Figueiredo:

I'm going to be elitist. If you have problems with elitism, maybe you had
better pretend this message doesn't exist; you won't see any logic in it
anyway once the red mist comes down.

Bar Camp is a spectacular study in missing the point. The point of Foo Camp
was that it was elitist. This made the knees jerk without realising what the
benefit of an elitist conference was. The benefit of its elitism was that it
functioned as a technical meritocracy; everyone who came to Foo Camp was
interesting in some way and had something useful to talk about, and you could
learn from them. In BitTorrent terms, all seeders, no leechers.

But, as I said, the knees jerked, and people complained that it was elitist,
so *obviously* it should be opened up to anyone. Hence Bar Camp. 

Hoorah. Now we have a conference for people who are not interesting enough to
be invited to Foo Camp but none the less think they have some kind of divine
right to have people more interesting than them entertain and instruct them.
In BitTorrent terms, all leechers, no seeders.

But at least anyone can attend, and that's the important thing, right?

I did write and prove correct a 20-line program in January, but I made
the mistake of testing it on our VAX and it had an error, which two
weeks of searching didn't uncover, so there went one publication out the
window.  - David Gries, 1980

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