March 16, 2010

GNOME Foundation and KDE e.V. to Co-Host Conferences in 2011

BOSTON, Mass — March 16, 2010 — Following the successful Gran Canaria Desktop Summit in 2009, the GNOME Foundation and KDE e.V. Boards have decided to co-locate their flagship conferences once again in 2011, and are taking bids to host the combined event. The Desktop Summit 2011 will be the largest free desktop event ever.

In July of 2009, the GNOME and KDE communities came together for the Gran Canaria Desktop Summit, the first co-located KDE/GNOME event. It was a major success, and was a fantastic opportunity for the leaders of the free software desktop efforts to share talks, communicate on common issues, and attend combined social events. The attendees from both projects expressed great interest in repeating the event and merging the programmes to synchronize schedules and make the event an even greater opportunity for the KDE and GNOME teams to learn from each other and work together.

“The Gran Canaria Desktop Summit was a great first event,” said Vincent Untz, GNOME Foundation Board Member. “We enjoyed working with our KDE friends at GCDS in 2009, and want to increase our cooperation in 2011. We plan to go beyond simple co-location this time, and actually plan a combined schedule in 2011 so that KDE and GNOME contributors have every opportunity to work with and learn from each other.”

The combined summit is also an opportunity for commercial sponsors of the GNOME and KDE projects to meet with the contributors from KDE and GNOME and to help foster faster collaboration and development of the free software desktop. Sponsors of the first Desktop Summit have expressed great interest in seeing both communities working together again.

The GNOME and KDE projects will hold independent events in 2010. GUADEC, the GNOME Project’s annual conference, will be held in The Hague, Netherlands on July 24 through July 30 of this year. KDE’s Akademy will be located in Tampere, Finland from July 3 to 10 this year. Both groups will likely hold smaller sprints through 2010 and early 2011 to prepare for the combined 2011 Desktop Summit.

“The KDE e.V. board felt that GCDS was a fantastic event, and we learned what works well and what can be improved when co-hosting an event with our GNOME friends,” said Cornelius Schumacher of the KDE e.V. “KDE and GNOME share a lot of goals for the free desktop, as well as technology, so we’re excited to make use of this experience and have an opportunity to co-locate again in 2011.”

More than 850 contributors to the GNOME and KDE projects gathered in Gran Canaria last July. The event brought together attendees from 50 countries, and helped raise local awareness of free software and had a measurable impact on the local community. The impact of the event continues to be felt even after the event, with nearly 2 million hits to the summit Web site following the event.

“We were thrilled to have GCDS right here, and felt that it was an enormous boost for our local commitment to free software,” said José Miguel Santos Espino, Director of IT at the University of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria. “It’s hard to overstate how important it was to have the opportunity to meet with contributors from GNOME and KDE and learn more about what’s possible on the desktop with free software.”

The projects are seeking a host in Europe at a location that can handle more than 1,000 participants. For detailed requirements, prospective hosts can see the requirements for Akademy (http://ev.kde.org/akademy/requirements.php) and GUADEC (http://live.gnome.org/GuadecPlanningHowTo/CheckList). Applications are welcomed before May 15th and should be sent to the KDE e.V. (kde-ev-board@kde.org) and the GNOME Foundation (board@gnome.org) boards.

About GNOME and the GNOME Foundation

GNOME is a free-software project whose goal is to develop a complete, accessible and easy to use desktop for Linux and Unix-based operating systems. GNOME also includes a complete development environment to create new applications. It is released twice a year on a regular schedule.

The GNOME desktop is used by millions of people around the world. GNOME is a standard part of all leading GNU/Linux and Unix distributions, and is popular with both large existing corporate deployments and millions of small business and home users worldwide.

Composed of hundreds of volunteer developers and industry-leading companies, the GNOME Foundation is an organization committed to supporting the advancement of GNOME. The Foundation is a member directed, non-profit organization that provides financial, organizational and legal support to the GNOME project and helps determine its vision and roadmap.

More information about GNOME and the GNOME Foundation can be found at www.gnome.org andfoundation.gnome.org.

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