Great Wide Open in Atlanta

great wide openHere at OSTraining, our business is open source and our headquarters is in Atlanta, Georgia.

So, when we heard that a conference on the business of open source is headed to Atlanta, we wanted to know more.

Great Wide Open is a conference talking about open source inside large companies. 

I spoke with Todd Lewis, one of the organizers of the Great Wide Open.  

#1. Todd, can you introduce yourself and your team?

The conference is presented by IT-ology, a non-profit dedicated to educating people about Information Technology (IT), getting them more interested in it, and eventually filling the IT pipeline with qualified people with technology skills.  

Professional events like Great Wide Open are part of the educational opportunities the organization makes possible. It believes open source, open tech, and the open web are the future of IT and therefore extremely important.  

#2. What exactly is the Great Wide Open?

Great Wide Open is a world-class educational and networking conference around the topic of Open Source, Open Tech, and the Open Web in the enterprise.  

It features 45 minute sessions and 1.5 hour workshops for Developers/Programmers/Designers, Operations professionals (data and sys admins, engineers, scientists, etc.), and business people (CTOs, CIOs, IT managers of all types). The focus is Open Source/Tech/Web in the enterprise and business and how it can be utilized.  

#3. Why Atlanta?

Atlanta has a thriving technology community with many, many people using open technology, whether they realize it or not. The people that are using it need to know how to use it better, what issues come along with it, and what other open solutions exist. Along the same line, many companies and organizations located here are not using open technology. They need to investigate what's available and how it might help them just the same. Regardless of what a person or organization may be currently using, it's always good to be aware of other options and alternatives. Atlanta has a great mix of both these types.  

#4. Why do we need an open source event that focuses on the enterprise?

We need an event that focuses on open source in the enterprise because that's where the innovation is. Open source naturally lends itself to innovation and collaboration, and this results in better solutions that can be deployed in enterprise environments. For far too long people associated open source with hobbyists. Our goal is to demonstrate that open technologies are being used around the world to solve complex problems in enterprise environments, what those technologies are, and how they can be used. 

#5. Do you think that open source is still having a hard time getting acceptance by enterprise-level organizations?

To a degree, yes, but things are changing. Old perceptions die hard, but most IT decision makers now listen to the developers, administrators and other people doing the work – and they're using open technologies of all types when given a choice. As decisions are made more bottom-up as opposed to top-down, you'll see it change even more.  

#6. What are you hoping to achieve with Great Wide Open?

We're hoping to provide a world-class educational and networking opportunity for anyone that attends. Even though many opportunities like this exist today that don't require face-to-face interaction, we believe conferences are invaluable – as long as the content is quality. We're obsessed with providing world-class content.  We guarantee all attendees will leave having learned something they can use immediately.    

Great Wide Open details

JoomlaDay Atlanta and the Great Wide Open

Joomla Day Atlantajday atlanta was scheduled back-to-back with Great Wide Open, a major open source conference in Atlanta.

If you're considering coming to Atlanta for one event, why not attend both?

Great Wide Open is on April 2nd and 3rd. Joomla Day Atlanta is on April 5th.

The venues for both events are only a mile apart. We hope to make it easy for people to come to Atlanta and attend both conferences.

 


About the author

Steve is the founder of OSTraining. Originally from the UK, he now lives in Sarasota in the USA. Steve's work straddles the line between teaching and web development.