Germany 2011 – Day 2
There isn’t really a lot to report about what I did today. It was an hour wait on the tarmac in Vancouver while the plane was being fixed, an eight-and-a-half hour flight to London with a two-hour layover before the one-and-a-half hour connecting flight to Cologne, Germany.
At the Vancouver airport, we are spoiled with free public wifi access. Sadly, Heathrow and Bonn airports do not offer free wifi access.
I remembered some advice on the forum to take a train into the city. At the train station connecting to the Cologne city centre, I met up with a couple Symphonists, who were also travelling to the conference: Marco from Milan and Simone from Rome. We travelled in on the train to the end of the line in the city centre, which happened to be right across from their hotel, but still a fair distance away from mine.
I had been hoping to have access to Google maps on my iPad, but that was wishful thinking. I ended up catching a cab to the art’otel, where I have a corner room overlooking the Rhine and the Cologne Cathedral.
Meeting Up at the Stadtgarten Beer Garden
Once I was able to enable my free 256 Kb throttled wifi connection at the hotel, I was able to connect with the group, who had planned a gathering at a beer garden, not far from the location of the Symposium venue at the KOMED MediaPark.
It was great to catch up with people we have been working with over the years via the Symphony discussion forum and GitHub and to meet new people. The virtual meetups are good, but nothing beats chatting face-to-face about this amazing web development tool that inspires us to do our best work and to collaborate together to create such a passionate open source development community.
At the beer garden, we had representatives from Italy, Germany, the Netherlands, the UK, Australia/Taiwan and Canada. The proprieters of the establishment turned off the lights after last call, but we chatted in the dark until we realized that we’d better get some sleep and save some energy for the three day agenda we have mapped out for our group.
German Symphony Developers Network
I had this wild plan to include a visit to various Bauhaus sites as I travelled around Germany to also conduct a studio tour of the German Symphony Developers Network, who are hosting the Symposium. It’ll be a grand adventure.
I’m already hearing about some amazing projects that are currently in the works, so I’m really looking forward to Allen Chang‘s keynote presentation, starting the weekend off with a brief intro into more indepth presentations from the rest of the group, leading to discussions and practical planning to engage and re-engage our collaborative effort on Symphony as a truly community-driven open source project.