It’s been about a week from FOSDEM and I can now claim that I’ve almost recovered. The conference takes place in Brussels at Université libre de Bruxelles and has no entrance fee in the spirit of open source. The talks are spread out around the campus in several buildings and are themed by room which I find very convenient. I was mostly camping in Go, Rust rooms on Saturday and MySQL, Postgres on Sunday.

The conference was quite crowded but I managed to always get into whichever room I was planning to go to. University buildings are about 5 minutes apart so switching rooms was a breeze once I got used to the university layout. Fortunately for me the organizers called in food trucks that took credit cards. I basically spent two days on a very Belgian diet of fries and waffles. The bags of random waffles were amazing and they smelled divine so getting past that part of the conference was quite difficult for me. There was also an amazing free coffee stand which kept me alive for two days (kudos to the organizers!).

Out of the talks I attended I suggest checking out the following:

  1. Glidesort

    Glidesort algorithm is a sorting algorithm optimized for modern CPUs in Rust. The talk is quite technical and goes into detail on how even more performance was squeezed out of a problem that is featured on every coding interview.

  2. The Human Factor

    This talk discusses the essential part with which I deal on a regular basis as an engineer - ie. problem solving and mistakes done along the way. It’s a non-technical talk with a unique perspective that I founf well worth considering. It also convinced me that I need to read: The Naked Pilot.

  3. Optimizing string usage in Go programs

    It’s always nice to go deper into language features to find performance bottlenecks and squeeze some more juice out of existing codebase. This talk discusses some interesting optimization options with Go strings.

  4. State of Delve

    Delve debugger is my go-to debugger for Go. It saved my life plenty of times in the last year so it’s always nice to hear what’s up.

As a frequent visitor of conferences such as We are developers or CRAFT I found FOSDEM organization amazing. I regret now having cash on hand and not packing a litre of water for the day but I was generally able to get by with cards. The venue is about 30 minutes from the city centre. If visiting don’t forget to buy a T-shirt or a hoodie as a thank you to the organizers.

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