Community Call #15.3 – OTS Conf 2015

Scheduling the second edition of the Community Call:

Time and Date:

OTS Community Call 15.3
Friday, March 27th 2015 at 7pm GMT (8pm CET)
via google hangouts



  • Quick Round of introduction
  • @Ola is going to tell us about OTS Conf
  • tbd

If you have anything else you’d like to talk about, please let us know here and we’ll add it to the agenda.

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A quick personal feedback: I just learned that there is something like a community call (a second one even). I might have missed it despite obvious announcements. In case this has not been sent to the global mailing list I’d propose to do so as long as we have not deprecated those.


I’ll attend. Given the audience is rather small-ish (4 persons?) I don’t think this is the perfect venue to discuss far-reaching stuff yet, so let’s maybe postpone the agenda items which are on our backlog.

I have also invited Urban (ZRH) who wanted to present the open education platform

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Thanks everyone for coming to this edition of the Community Call, featuring OTSconf, racketeering schemes on Meetup, funny hairdo for Ben and a new workshop (yes, you’ll have to read through all of the notes to find it.)

Without further ado, I present the meeting minutes:
(Also, this is the last time I cross-post it to Discourse, the Markdown editor makes it very inconvenient to take/copy the notes.)

  • [ben] Yay, first hangouts community call.
  • [ben] If you’re on Slack, renew your password. And maybe also use 2FA.
    • [ola] 2FA not working, discussing offline.
  • OTSConf
    • [ola] 15/16th August, old brewery in Dortmund with a beautiful view
    • in Dortmund to build the local community :slight_smile:
    • 11 talks + lightning talks + party
    • workshops on 2nd day
      • JSfAB
        • [ben] yay, keeping up tradition
      • maybe Django Girls
      • some paid ones
      • [ben] only for attendees?
        • [ola] nope, ffa
  • CfP opens mid-April
  • Ticket sale opens 5th of April
    • Early bird (170EUR)
    • Regular (260EUR)
    • Discount for OTS members (10% off)
    • Student discount (80EUR)
    • Diversity & community (sponsored) tickets
  • [ben] Motivation?
    • [ola] Want a conference.
  • [martin] Not being free?!
    • [ola] We know, ugh.
    • [martin] People will not like it.
    • [ola] Normally, everything works with sponsors. We don’t have enough for this event.
    • [martin] Just be careful when communicating it.
    • <general confusion ensues>
    • [martin] General identity crisis in OTS.
    • AI(martin, ola, ben) Needs a blog post.
    • [charlotte] Don’t frame it like “hey guys, we’re doing a conference, here’s why.” This is an umbrella organization, and it gives leeway to all chapters. It’s important we keep it that way.
  • [charlotte] So, how is this OTS-y?
    • [ola] Free packages, student/sponsored discounts.
    • [martin] Why?
    • [ola] Dortmund is a small community. We’re doing this to grow the local tech community culture. Workshops are not well-understood / undervalued (40% drop-out rate.)
  • [robert] Local vs. global audience
    • [ola] We don’t know yet.
    • [leif] We can tell when signups open.
    • [ben] What’s the target ratio?
      • [ola] I would love the Ruhr area (Dortmund, Dusseldorf, Cologne) to come together.
        We’re expecting people from Poland, the Netherlands, and England.
  • [martin] Excited. Need to get the word out.
  • [ola] I’m hoping for a continuation of OTSconf; not necessarily at Dortmund.
  • We need help with community sponsors.
    • [martin] So, small-ish companies?
    • [ola] 1’150EUR (1 corporate ticket + 2 community tickets + travel expenses)
    • [robert] Ruhr area only?
      • [ola] Anywhere! Global! More!
  • [charlotte] If the alternative to a paid-for conference is no conference, I’d rather have a conference.
  • [urban’s ghost, robert] :
    • [martin] Meetup is not perfect.
      • More flexible waiting lists
      • Commercial :frowning:
      • But, huge network effect
    • [ola] Great idea, lots of non-satisfaction with Meetup.
      • Migration would lose us a lot of people.
    • [ben] “Tourism effect,” people just show up randomly
    • Maybe have Meetup as a marketing platform, and OpenKI/<whatever> as a organization platform.
    • AI(martin) I’m happy to spend 15min to try it out.
  • [ben] What are the problems with Meetup?
    • [martin] Meetup makes it hard to see what experience level people have, and assigning seats in a more approriate manner.
    • Usually contacting people on the waiting list for their expectations / current knowledge.
    • [martin] Communication sucks. Where is the forum?
    • [robert] Overhead is too large. Text copying, managing coaches vs. learners.
    • [leif] Doing something against the drop-out rate. Protection fee?
      • [martin] Gauging relevance of workshops to people manually works.
      • [ola] Nope, nice weather. That’s also why we don’t do 2-day workshops anymore.
      • [leif] Also frustrating to coaches.
      • [ola] Did that in Salzburg, people could donate the fee / get it back at the event.
      • [ben] In the US, that’s normal for Meetups (meet at a bar, first drink free.)
      • AI(ben): Open discussion on protection fees.
      • [robert] Hinders diversity?
      • [ben] In the US not much, if you don’t have a car you wouldn’t reach the event anyways.
      • [ola] Less a money problem, more a motivation problem.
      • [robert] This is going to make our social diversity problem worse.
      • [ben] Meetup doesn’t make protection fees too convenient.
  • [ola] New workshop coming up: CouchDB.
  • Material not yet online.
  • 13th of June.
  • AI(ben) Find out how to Hangouts on Air.
  • [ben] Was this useful?
    • [robert] Yes, have it monthly!
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Ben’s funny haircut :smiley:

@robert I think a list of participants is missing. It’s hard to tell later by short names within the text. Maybe also add chapter or whatever helpful extra info.

Now I’m curious about @ben’s funny haircut! :smile:

@ben, when is the next community call?

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A participant list is available over at the G+ event.

For posterity: I think it was Ola and Leif from Dortmund/OTSConf, Martin from Berlin, Robert from Berlin/Zurich, Charlotte and Ben from Berlin/Hackership/some exotic location,

Feedback noted for next time, the notes-taking was very ad-hoc for this round. :blush:

Do we want to keep this on a Friday? I think it might constrain quite some members from coming. (Also, it excludes Australia by pure virtue of their timezone I guess.)

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