An Open Weekend #2

In previous years the LUGRadio caravan has run for two days – this year the guys decided one day was all they could handle, so it fell to other people to keep the ball rolling on Sunday.. The Ubuntu UK and Linux Outlaws podcasts stepped into the breach, and thus OggCamp was born.

Today was less organised than Saturday and, other than a timetabled live podcast to be jointly run by both crews at the end of the day, the roster was completely blank. In traditional ‘bar camp’ style, people were invited to put their names down to give talks, presentations or lead discussions on subjects that they choose. Amazingly, the timetable filled up really fast and I think that, on balance, today’s talks and presentations were even better than yesterday’s!

Of particular interest to me were the talks by Andy Stanford Clark on his, now famous, twittering house, and the talk from Imran on translating the Playstation 2 game, Front Mission 5, from Japanese into English. We also got another presentation by Bruno Bord, this time sporting a classic 1970s Wolves shirt!

Andy also told us about his work mashing up publicly available data to produce a live timetable for the various Isle of White ferries, so that he would always know when he had a few more minutes to spare to get there before it set off. Of course, being very public-spirited, Andy made this available online in the form of an RSS feed and, in due course, it suddenly started appearing on the official site for the ferries. It took an April Fool’s trick, where he replaced the feed with a message saying that “X ferry was now arriving at Milton Keynes” before the ferry company started talking to him about using the data!

I was amazed at the scope of Imran’s project – which effectively is a complete rework of a very deep and complex manga game. He’s doing what project managers in game companies are paid thousands to do, and he and the other developers are doing it just because they’re passionate about the genre. There are regular updates and releases, and they hope to be completed soon. You can check out the project here. They’re soon starting work on translating Ace Combat 3 (one of my favourite games of all time) because the existing English version had whole sections cut out of it for the European market, thus wiping out the game’s main storyline.

Of course day two closed appropriately, with another live podcast recording and another prize draw, and I really hope they find the energy to do the whole thing again next year. It makes such a change from the stuffy corporate conferences that I have to suffer throughout the year, and I’d even put my hand up to help out when 2010 comes around. Congratulations to all on putting together such a fantastic event!

From OggCamp October 2009


  1. says

    Glad you enjoyed my talk! :-) Just a note that the Front Mission Translation Project ( is not really "my" project. It is a team effort spearheaded by Angelo D. Pineda, who is a respected individual in the Front Mission fan community. Thanks, Imran (Imran-UK)