Things are well under way here in Santiago, Chile at the FUDCon conference. Yesterday morning, my flight was delayed getting into Santiago, so when I landed I made a mad dash through immigrations and customs. Antonio was kind enough to pick me up at the airport and drive me directly to the conference. There is a nice new road from the airport to downtown, so it didn’t take very long to get to Universidad Central where the FUDCon conference is being held. When I arrived, the attendees were waiting for me to kick off the show. (I had secretly hoped they would start without me, but I didn’t get my wish.)
My plan was to give a quick introduction in (broken) Spanish, and then give a quick presentation in English. As it turned out, I ended up giving both the introduction and presentation in rusty Spanish, and even did a short question and answer session in Spanish as well. Little by little my brain is recalling words and phrases that I haven’t used in fourteen years.
After my presentation, I spent a few minutes meeting the other FUDCon organizers and staff, and then had some photos taken for the press here in Chile. (I’m not sure how well the pictures turned out, as I had just been on an airplane for almost ten hours!) I also had a telephone interview with a local journalist, which was a bit difficult because I found myself lacking in technical terms in Spanish. Luckily, I had Alexis and Loreto from the Universidad Central to help me better explain some of the more technical details in better Spanish.
After a quick lunch, I listened to a few of the other talks before being pulled out for more interviews and photos. It was very interesting to listen to the questions from the journalists, and see how they started to catch on to the “open source way”. Alexis also shared with them more statistics about software piracy here in Chile (and Latin America in general), and how free and open source software is a natural way to help solve that problem.
After the conference wound down for the night, we returned to the hotel to drop off our bags and then went out for some dinner. We ended up eating at a restaurant with some great Peruvian food. After a long and exciting day, I slept like a rock.