LibreOffice Conference 2017 Rome – I was there

- Open Source, Was there

Getting started with a video seemed to me the best way of seeing numbers in succession (200 participants from over 30 countries).

I could take two days out of three so I leave you with my report ๐Ÿ˜€


@libocon in #Rome started! #libreoffice

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Undoubtedly the location is unique, the Campidoglio, in the middle of busts of illustrious Italian characters such as Dante or Boccaccio and 3x3m paintings of prominent Roman nobles of 600-700 century allowed to make this event unique to the LibreOffice community as well as to the Open Source world in Italy.

When did such a specific open source international conference be held in Italy, with a wide participation and organized by a community in such a place? I would say, even for the international issue not only of the location.

@industriaitasl c'รจ alla #libocon #libreoffice

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The problem, perhaps due to the various standing rooms, caused problems especially because a room was a labyrinth to get there and could not be put up for signs, but given the place this license is acceptable.

Between talk and the other it was possible to jump to the Coliseum or the Pantheon what we say is not everyday for an IT conference that usually takes place at university.


The event has had a lot of talk from topics closely related to LibreOffice to other more general like translation or community management.

I replaced Edoardo who could not be talking about the project by Sara, or Mozilla Italia’s guide to translation rules as a method for recruiting new volunteers.

I have followed a few talk in the end, from the one dedicated to the integration of KDE5 into LibreOffice with those of the Open Source Observatory. What I liked most was “Git for panicked contributors” where I took notes and I want to re-open in my own way.

The speakers knew how to do their role, but on the first day, in my view presenting the various people with different roles takes too much time especially if the presents are all in the community and they know each other. That part could be cut by talking more about LibreOffice and the goals of the various teams last year in order to increase the questions (there has been a presentation about spreading data but providing hints never harms).

The arguments seemed to me very technical and dedicated to the developers present and not wide-ranging (perhaps except on Friday with the various interventions but it is the only day I could not attend).


Strong also the presence of sponsoring companies allowed the event (also with gadgets). This also allows you to understand how you can do business with open source technologies, in the LibreOffice world besides support and training there is also the ability to fix specific bugs.

Values of Collabora are very interesting #libreoffice

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The gadgets were many different and also really unusual things like


The event was an opportunity to meet old friends and talk a lot about KDE being contributor.

The opportunity to meet people who act to bring open source to non-Italian state envelopes has been interesting to have another view on what can be done on the subject.

Evenings to eat together and talk about more and less prove to be the best.


The social event management was not easy with several hashtags and the twitter account of the conference that died from two editions. In short, from that point of view, tracking what was happening was not easy but after a few minutes and having understood the various hashtags, there was no problem at all.

Differences with Mozilla

The event reminded me of Mozilla’s international events and its differences. Starting with MozFest at All Hands.

The Mozilla Festival that this week in London is dedicated to digital literacy and is a showcase of what Mozilla does on the theme with many presentations programming and therefore much more generic.

The presence of the Mozilla community in this event is there but after two editions I see a lot of niche because the event is not meant for the same volunteers but for people outside, I can not talk about the 2017 edition because I will not be there .

All Hands is an event designed for Mozilla employees and selected volunteers to upgrade between them and work together by planning the next few months.

With this premise we can say that I would like a Mozilla Conference to talk to volunteers about news and not just stuff of work or promotion outside but also think about volunteers themselves.

Of course, a difference between LibreOffice and Mozilla is evident since the first is a Document Foundation and the second deals with a lot of things and so dealing with everything is more difficult.

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