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2006 OpenBSD Hackathon Well Underway 71

An anonymous reader writes "KernelTrap is running a two part who's who at the 2006 OpenBSD Hackathon. Starting on the 27th and running for a full week, developers get together and concentrate on communication rather than just development. Project leader Theo de Raadt was quoted as saying 'I don't think anybody else does this, developers suspend their lives for a week to focus entirely on just development.'"
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2006 OpenBSD Hackathon Well Underway

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  • by Nimrangul ( 599578 ) on Tuesday May 30, 2006 @10:07PM (#15432665) Journal
    No, a sprint is shorter than a hackathon and tends to be run by significantly smaller projects than a full operating systems. Something insignificant like pypy or the like does a sprint, infact that's how most of their development is done, two day sprints all the time.
  • by OmegaBlac ( 752432 ) on Tuesday May 30, 2006 @10:14PM (#15432699)
    Debian developers do this. [] It may not be a week at a time but several weekends a year and it eventually evens out. []
  • What about DebConf? (Score:5, Informative)

    by Roblimo ( 357 ) on Tuesday May 30, 2006 @10:19PM (#15432725) Homepage Journal
    It seems to me that two weeks ago I was in Mexico at DebConf [], which if you look at the official page [], was preceded by a weeklong "DebCamp" that could just as easily been called a "hackathon," not to mention that probably 60% or more of the average attendee's time during the "main" DebConf week was spent in collaborative hacking. And DebConf had around 250 people there...

    I'm not knocking OpenBSD's hackathon, just pointing out that it's hardly unique. Many other FOSS projects have similar gatherings.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday May 30, 2006 @10:42PM (#15432796)
    I've never been to an OpenBSD hackathon either, but I think the theory is that when you are coding, you often might run into a problem where you'd like to consult someone else, and at the hackathon, an expert is right at the next table. No need to worry about lag from email/IM waiting for a response while another person has gone away for the day, or lives in a different time-zone, is busy working at their day-job, etc, etc.
  • Meet the Hackathon (Score:5, Informative)

    by rbrander ( 73222 ) on Tuesday May 30, 2006 @10:54PM (#15432838) Homepage
    For the second time (and we're hoping for an annual tradition) the Hackathon has agreed to come up for air long enough to give a talk to the Calgary Unix Users Group.

    This year, Bob Beck and Reyk Floeter will give a talk to the group and many Hackathon participants on their directions in wireless chipset support, advanced feature support, and security support.

    At SAIT, June 1, 6PM - all details at []

  • by RazzleDazzle ( 442937 ) on Wednesday May 31, 2006 @12:14AM (#15433055) Journal
    There are no "project decisions" to be discussed and made. Theo is the owner of the project, if you want to debate with him on the merits of his choices for the project, he will likely listen to what you have to say as long as it is reasonable to him.

    As an analogy imagine if you were part of a team creating a car. Each person in the team is worked on just part of the car.
    Person 1 says, "I like engines so I am going to work on engine development."
    Person 2 says, "I like tires so I am going to work on tires and wheels."
    Person 3 says, "I like safety features so I am going to work on safety."

    Now imagine all of these people working on their respective components but in different countries around the world, completely independent of the rest, it could be difficult to ensure proper integration and compatability. Yes they chat, e-mail, etc but when many people are side by side it is much easier to discuss problems you are facing, either design issues, implementaion issues or whatever. Plus, you get to be around a lot of dialogue and discussions that could help enlighten you to other methods or ways of doing things better.

    This could just be an oversimplification, but if you work directly with a lot of cool and fun people you admire and are admired by, let's face it, it probably is a lot more fun and productive. It is a team effort of people that like what they are doing and want to do it all lead by captain TdR. Plus I imagine there is some Humppa playing there as well?

    Note: I am no developer nor have I ever been to an OpenBSD hackathon.
  • by dmiller ( 581 ) <> on Wednesday May 31, 2006 @01:48AM (#15433342) Homepage
    Nice work trimming out the ones from other countries.
  • by Johnny deBris ( 826604 ) on Wednesday May 31, 2006 @02:42AM (#15433491) Homepage
    Actually, PyPy sprints can last more than a day or two, iirc the longest was 6 or 7 days. Same for Zope and other Python projects: week-long sprints are uncommon, but they do happen. Also, I wonder whether this has anything to do with significance... I think hackathons and sprints are basically the same thing, just different words for similar gatherings in different communities.

Life in the state of nature is solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short. - Thomas Hobbes, Leviathan