ApacheCon EU 2008 so far

I invariably get to these conferences and then don’t have the time or inclination to keep a running commentary. This one is no different. There have been a few really good talks, but mostly, it has been really good conversations, meeting people that I either hadn’t met before, or hadn’t spoken with in way too long.

Highlights so far include:

Meeting Ivan Ristic of mod_security. He was scheduled to come to ApacheCon Stuttgart, and then was unable to, due to real life getting in the way, as it so often does. It was great to finally meet him, and his talk was fabulous. I’ve often said about my own talks that it’s all stuff that’s in the docs, so why do people come. I’m sure that everything Ivan talked about is in the docs, but his talk was amazingly valuable anyway, since it showed me things in one hour that would probably have taken me months to discover. And I’ve been using mod_security for years already, and wasn’t aware of them, or didn’t quite understand the syntax. Did you know that mod_security 2.5 lets you write rules in Lua? Crazy.

Speaking with Andrew Ford. I met him first in London in 2000, and I’m not sure if I’ve spoken with him since then. Certainly not more than a handful of times. He’s the author of Apache Pocket Reference – a great book, but greatly out of date. The cover proclaim that it covers Apache 1.3.12! Andrew is working on a new edition, which is truly good news for Apache httpd administrators. And we can hope to see Andrew on the documentation list in the coming months, which is also good news.

After hours dinners and chats have been fantastic across the board. Reconnecting with people that I only see for one or two weeks a year is always a highlight of ApacheCon.

But, as usual by this time in the week, I’m definitely ready to get back home, so there’s this tension between really wanting to be here, and really wanting to be home. Good, both directions.