Perl Conference 2.0
Anyone remember "Perl Conference 2.0"?
I was there. I had a good time, in spite of a completely screwed up travel-from-Boston nightmare that had me arrive at my hotel at 4am.
The conference was generally informative, and I resonated with Larry Wall; his keynote was a riot. Perl had layers (and onions) well before Shrek. We still don't have Topaz/Perl 6, but what do you want for nuthin'?
One evening I chatted with Tom C, a nice, quiet guy who seemed to be discomfited with conference things in general, and liked to play the piano.
When Tim O'Reilly came on stage, I was disappointed. I didn't hear any real "vision" that was coherent, and I walked away thinking, "OK, he just wants to sell more books". Nearly a decade later, I don't remember the topic of his talk, just that feeling. Perhaps someone will post a transcript of it - maybe it was Web 2.0 alpha.
Perhaps this is what was going on: Larry Wall created something for himself. He was the father/author who was optimistic but humble for this offspring. And then he let the "child" free, so that it could play with others, not just with and for him.
OTOH, Tim O created a business of channeling the creativity of others. I'm glad I have the books I do from O'Reilly - most remain regular references for me (particularly Tom's Cookbook). But Tim's interest was in me buying the limited use of his children. That's capitalism, but it didn't leave me with the same Warm Fuzzy Feeling(sm) that I got and still get from things like Perl.