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Major tech conference confirmed for Christchurch

One of the most respected technical conferences to be held in Australasia is coming to Christchurch.

Between 500-800 delegates from around Australasia and the world will meet in the city in 2019 for linux.conf.au. It will be the 20th anniversary of the annual conference, which will run from 21-25 January 2019 at the University of Canterbury.

The conference boasts around 100 international speakers and presentations during the five-day programme, with content covering topics such as the Linux kernel, open source hardware and software, open government data and the various communities that have evolved around them.

Linux is an operating system, just as Microsoft Windows and Apple’s MacOS, iOS and Android are. It is found at the core of the smallest Android devices to the world’s biggest supercomputer and runs Google, Facebook, Amazon, Twitter, the International Space Station, air traffic control systems, the London and Chicago Stock Exchange, Japan’s Bullet trains, modern cars and much more.

Linux embodies the ‘open source’ paradigm of software development, which says that the code which drives computers and mobile devices should be ‘open’. In other words, the code should be viewable, modifiable and shareable by anyone to help facilitate innovation, transparency, sharing and re-use.

Conference Chair Steven Sykes, of the University of Canterbury’s Computer Science and Software Engineering department, is pleased the high calibre event is coming.

“We’re really looking forward to hosting such a strong contingent of people who are involved in the open source world.

“The conference theme is the “Linux of Things”, or, the Internet of Things alternatively expressed. Depending on whose projections you want to subscribe to, by 2020 there will be over 20 billion IoT devices in the world and this doesn’t include phones, tablets and laptops. Even though we’ll have a variety of topics covered, IoT is what we’ll be focusing on.”

ChristchurchNZ’s Convention Bureau and Industry Partnership Manager Caroline Blanchfield says it’s great news for Christchurch, Canterbury and the South Island every time a conference is confirmed in the city.

“These high value visitors to our city help to grow our knowledge economy and also use it as an opportunity to spend some leisure time in our city and region, often travelling widely throughout the South Island.”


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