Today I got to know about two different unfortunate events for open source culture happening in Spain at more or less the same time. First the cancellation of the Open Source World Conference to happen in Malaga on October 28th. According to some sources, the economical situation forced the main organizers to suspend in the last minute. However, and here the good news, the National Federation of Free Software Companies (Federación Nacional de Empresas de Software Libre – ASOLIF) has decided to carry on with their part within the event and to keep it alive despite the problems. The organizers have gathered those interested in the conference around an email list that registered over 2.000 messages in the 5 days they have known about the cancellation. If you want to follow what is going on, subscribe to the email list and be part of the buzz.
On the other hand, my hometown -Zaragoza, Spain- is about to host the Hackmeeting 2010, codename Gozahack, what translates into “Enjoy Hacking” or “Enjoy the Hack”. The list of activities proposed for this event can be seen here. I really like the nodes dealing with intellectual property issues, and with open hardware. The Qi-Hardware people are going to host one of the talks, and promises to be quite interesting. These meetings are a yearly event that usually takes place at a Squatted Social Center. Squatting is not legal in most of the EU, Spain is not an exception. Today, October 18th 2010, just three days before the event starts, the police broke into the social center where Gozahack was going to take place. Unfortunate? Sure it is, but not the end of the world. Again, the organizers have decided to go on. They aren’t really sure yet how they will make it but they will host the event. Three days of hacking, politics and love for making things: follow this website to check how the story unfolds.
Might seem like a bad day for Open Source in Spain, but the commitment shown by the open source/free software community, is a proof that it is not. What is not killing you, makes you stronger, as we say in Spanish.