SUSECON Digital 2021: a Behind-the-Scenes Look at a Space Oddity

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It’s been almost a year since we unveiled SUSECON Digital 2020 – our first virtual SUSECON event. No lies, that event was pulled off in a frenzied whirlwind of pandemic onslaughts, virtual session recordings, and bandwidth battles. Frankly, I was amazed that we met our production schedule in the wake of the Covid-cancellation of our live event in Dublin. And I was even more amazed at our SUSECON audience reaction to the virtual event. You loved it! As one of the first virtual conferences of the Covid era, your feedback told us that we had delivered exactly what was needed at the time. What an exceptional opportunity for us to include thousands of friends from all over the world who normally can’t join us at the big event!

Fast-forward a year, and we’re all looking at each other asking the same question: do we really need another on-line conference?? Virtual event fatigue is REAL! We can barely bring ourselves to stare at a screen to do our work. What could possibly entice us to spend precious hours (or even minutes) listening to more talking heads? SUSECON Digital 2021 will!

The theme of SUSECON Digital 2021 is “Innovate Everywhere”. SUSECON already delivers outstanding technical content to our attendees. Year after year, we hear how much you appreciate the quality of content and the value of the time we spend together. That won’t change. But we would have to be pretty innovative after a year of pandemic screen time to get you to actually want to come back and sit in front of that screen. So the SUSECON team has spent a year thinking about how we can extend that value in the virtual environment to make it more dynamic and inviting. As if you were being transported to another world…..

Enter the SUSECON Universe – warp to another dimension!

SUSECON Digital 2021 will take place in space (oh yeah, we’re taking our theme of “innovate everywhere” up several notches!). Not just cyberspace, but an actual universe where three worlds, Linux World, Kube World and Edge World spin in their orbits. The inhabitants of these worlds impart their wisdom and experience for the benefit of all creatures everywhere. If this sounds like a little much – it is! Our creative team has had a lot of fun developing the space theme into every aspect of the conference. You’ll see it in the digital event portal that helps organize the session content, in our keynote staging and speakers, and even in the games attendees play! We hope you’ll get into the spirit of the conference and have some fun with it too.

Did you say Games?

Of course! Mind you, we’re not talking about hours of on-line gameplay, but we think it’s important for everyone to take a break now and then to relax, let your mind recharge and gear up for the next technical download. So we have incorporated some – uh – distractions into the event portal itself. We hope you will join us as we play some games, take fun space pictures (you gotta post these!), do some wellness activities like yoga and meditation, and maybe event see what kind of food they serve in Kube World… When you’re ready for a break, we’ll have you covered. You can opt for just having some fun, or maybe spend some time in conversations with like-minded friends.

Wait a minute – I’ve got Friends??

Of course you do – especially in the SUSEverse! Covid just made you forget for a while… In fact, we have spent a considerable amount of time figuring out how you and your friends can interact live during the conference. Sure, there’s social media and the regular chat rooms for discussing technical topics with engineers and subject matter experts during demos and breakout sessions. But what about those amazing hallway conversations where you find out that the person sitting next to you during the keynote may just be the smartest person you will ever meet? We’ve partnered with Braindate at SUSECON Digital to augment your learning experience beyond demos, keynotes and session presentations, to also including learning from conversations.

When you log in to the event, be sure to complete your event profile and list the topics that are of interest to you personally. That will allow you to find people with similar interests to talk to! You’ll also be able to find a host of small group discussions with subject matter experts and “birds-of-a-feather” that will make sure you get the most out of the time you spend with us.

All in all, we are really excited for SUSECON Digital. We’ve taken the theme of “Innovate Everywhere” very literally. We’re innovating in content, in event delivery and in the entire conference experience. You’ll learn how open source solutions from SUSE enable your own innovation engine. From Linux to Kubernetes to the Edge and beyond, we know there will be excellent content for you there and we’re confident that you’ll appreciate being in an environment that is not only educational, but fun!

See you at SUSECON Digital!

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Kent Wimmer
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