Ok here goes something:
Some of you might have followed the threads about the blender conference. Lets just say that I’d like to help improve the Bconf 2008 by adding a community effort to organising it next year. I have not talked to anybody about this yet, this is my first post about it, and I’m only trying to help… If people are already working on this through the Blender Institute, or are still collecting themselves I understand completedly that they would like a breath before the community gets organised.
Please keep this thread about what you would like to see in 2008, only what you want to see, and no comments about this year unless it comes with a suggestion about how to do it better. Also welcome are reasons why we should not do it, with suggestions about what to do instead.
-Going to a conference center in the centre of Utrecht or Rotterdam. So people that come from over the world for a second time can see a little more of the Netherlands than just Amsterdam.
-Have at least one stream per room available through blender.org or blendernation
-Organise centrally a sleeping place for the blenderheads close to the conference, preferrably as affordable as possible (an entire room or floor with locks from a youth hostel or something in the like). And make it possible to pay for these at the registration.
-have a special price for students or educational people to make it more affordable.
-pitch it to different creative university/schools courses to get some influx of new people.
-Add in a day before the conference with a guided tour to make it more than just a business trip.
-maybe make a family package.
-conference location: as many rooms as needed for the planned schedule (one presentation room, one workshop room) and at least one “free room” or cafeteria with a room with a free-for-presentation-with-beamer corner. The presentation room should be able to house everybody, workshop room about half to 1/3, cafeteria room should allow for 1/2 of the attendees to fit in, and have screens with live feeds from the workshop and presentation room. Access to the cafeteria should be free, and also have room for stands from the sponsors.
Discussing stuff: untill January 2008
Fixing venue, sleeping place, setting dates and so on, early february 2008
Fixing techies to do the broadcasts, movies and stuff: from february onwards working with what the conference venue has available
Starting etching the schedule for the conference: February 2008, finishing the first draft around may 2008 so that people can look what they are registrating for. Also use the Premiere of Peach to pitch the Bconf 2008.
starting media offensive, with the updated schedule: around end of August 2008
Amount of attendees: we should be able to get at LEAST 100 paid registrations by August 2008, with room for about 150-300 attendees. The budget should allow for the conference to be profittable, meaning that every attendant above the 100 means more stuff in the swag bag, or more drinks or food at the conference.
Change the conference venue to a university venue.
Unlikely options (but still: who knows?):
Going to the Twente university, or hosting the event together with other Open-source projects like Scribus/gimp/inkscape and the like.
Get more sponsors for the event to make it bigger, or the price more affordable.
If at all possible: a swag bag with a shirt and some stickers for every attendee, write this off as PR material, having walking billboards all over the world is always usefull.
Other nice stuff:
I don’t know how it has been done in the past, but here are some things that should be made clear for people wanting to do presentations at the bconf:
Entrance fee: free if you do a planned presentation as per following instructions:
Your presentation name and subject should be known by August 2008
Sheets and other digital material has to be delivered before 20th of Septmber (to leave the time to update the website, and prepare the content). If you have closed source/proprietery content try to at least make the slides available, or a short text resuming your presentation.
There should be a room for people to organise free presentations, deadline will be before the printing of the conference booklet. Or one day before arrival. If a lot of people register for an open presentation a schedule will be made and people will have to organise themselves about their schedules, if possible one day in advance, or on the same day on billboards with the schedule in the main conference area.
Reasonnable conference fees, these are targets the final price may vary a bit:
Pro’s: 90 euro’s for a 3 days pass, 35 euro’s for 1 day.
Freelancers: See above
Students/teachers: 35 Euro’s for a 3 day pass, 15 euros a day.
Extra costs: Saturday Dinner is included in the price. Friday and Sunday are optional dinners at 20 Euro’s a piece depending on number of registrations
Hotel costs: youth hostel: dono about (10-20 euro’s/night)
Chamber Hotel: dono (around 40-70 euro’s/night)
Thursday arrival and Guided tour of the city (including lunch) starting if more than 25 people intersted:
Around 40 euro’s/head.