Following Jay’s message it is clear it is time to start planning RacketCon
So I’m calling on Racketeers to volunteer to put together an awesome RacketCon.
The shape of the RacketCon will depend on the volunteers - any contribution is appreciated - so please get in touch so we can work out what is possible in the time we have left.
We just had a discussion about RacketCon 12 at the meet-up.
The current proposal is a two day weekend event, primarily virtual with pre-recorded presentations, with local events at the same time to add an in-person element.
We have some proposed dates, please vote and comment, as we want to make this as accessible as possible.
- 24-25 September
- 1-2 October
- 8-9 October
- 15-16 October
- Other - please comment
We didn't discuss times, but 2pm to 10pm UTC range used at the last RacketCon seemed to allow for a significant proportion of Racketeers to attend. Comments or suggestions for timings welcome. (I'd especially be interested in times that make participation possible for other parts of the world where these times are unreasonable)
I remember Bradley Kuhn mentioning at RacketCon 2019 that the Software Freedom Conservancy could provide some help with organization and logistics for RacketCon, and that they do this for many of their member projects. I think it would be great to take advantage of their support! In particular, if they can streamline some of the routine administrative tasks, I hope it might help maximize the value of the time contributed by Racket community volunteers.
I think the relevant services from SFC are financial responsibility and liability (https://sfconservancy.org/projects/services/).
This might be useful if there are costs to running RacketCon. We don’t want to be a drain on funds that keep the infrastructure we all rely on running.
This raises the question of what outputs does the community want to see? A RacketCon normally includes
- State of the Racket
- Town Hall
- Hallway sessions/ virtual biergarden
We can look at doing tutorials or workshops!
What has worked well at other conference?
Let us know!
IIRC Bradley was describing something broader than what the language on that page suggests to me (though maybe it's supposed to be covered under "other ways, resource-permitting") At around 20:36 in his talk he mentioned e.g. "back-office support" and around 22:40 "a lot of logistical stuff", e.g. "where to ship stickers". Though maybe part of my vague recollection is from having happened to sit at his table at the reception afterward. Anyway, whatever it is exactly that they're able to do, I hope we can find out and make optimal use of it.
My suggestion would be to aim for an in-person event, sometime in the early/mid autumn (as suggested above). I'm happy to take the lead here, if it helps. Just to describe the status quo as I understand it, I have seen RacketCon set up like this:
- Day 1: Talks (30 = 20 + 10 minute), including keynote
- Day 2: Tutorials (running in parallel, not everyone in the same room) plus the marquee Town Hall and State of the Racket presentations
This structure seems basically OK to my eyes, but any suggestions are welcome. (See below for one way to spice up this basic structure.)
Two days feels right to me. Racketfest (the unofficial, unauthorized skunkworks European RacketCon I've organized in the past) has compressed everything into a single day, with some success (in my opinion), but also some downsides. To me, RacketCon is a two-day event. (One could conceive of a 3-day event -- Friday to Sunday? -- but this would be more costly all around, increase planning complexity, and require more juice from the community to fill the space productively. Perhaps there are some ideas for a "pre-conference" event, maybe a half day barcamp/hackathon on Friday? This might help alleviate the sad situation where a large proportion of people are already gone by noon on Sunday because they need to get back home.)
I'm happy to do the research to find potential speakers & tutorial givers. One issue would be contacting SFC, together with the core team, to see what, concretely, SFC can do for us.
Any suggestions welcome!
Thank you @jesse for stepping up!
Please let me know if I can help or support in any way?
Just to give an brief update here:
The conference is penciled in to be held at Brown University, in Providence, Rhode Island, sometime in the fall. I'm working with Shiram to nail down details. The current thinking is that RacketCon 2022 will be a in-person event (not virtual). "Penciled in" means that it is not written in pen. We are still very early in the planning process and things might change. Please do not book flights, do not get a hotel room, do not get a "RacketCon 2022 PROVIDENCE" tattoo, or do anything rash like that. If Providence doesn't work out, there are a variety of backup plans to explore. I'm just sharing this publicly to at least give the community a sense -- however weak and tentative it may be -- of the current state of planning. You'll hear more as plans develop!
To be clear, you're still allowed to use rash though
Just a quick update: planning for RacketCon 2022 is still proceeding. This isn't a dead idea/dead thread! Expect to hear more in the coming weeks.
Mark your calendars! Planning has advanced enough that we can now say:
RacketCon 2022 will be Friday, October 28, 2022 to Sunday, October 30, 2022. It will be hosted at the Department of Computer Science at Brown University in Providence, Rhode Island, USA.
Friday, October 28: Afternoon hackathon/open space/workshop
Saturday, October 29: full day of talks
Sunday, October 30: half day (say, 9 or 10 am to noon or 1 pm) of talks & workshops, including the usual State of the Racket and Q&A session with the core team.
Many more details are still to be worked out, but we at least have a date and location. This message is just an initial announcement. Any comments and questions are welcome. Stay tuned for a more details and a more complete call for participation!